Tequila Sunrise Drink Recipe

Tequila Sunrise Drink Recipe

The Tequila Sunrise Drink was born in Arizona sometime in the late 1930s, early 1940s. The original way the drink was made – by bartender and creator Gene Sulit of the Wright Bar in the Arizona Biltmore hotel, is a little different than the one we’re used to today.

Originally named for the way the prepared drink resembled a sunrise, it was made with creme de cassis and soda water rather than orange juice and grenadine.

tequila sunrise


Original Tequila Sunrise
Drink Recipe

Traditionally, the tequila sunrise recipe was made with

  • tequila
  • crème de cassis
  • a squeeze of lime juice
  • soda water


In most bars today, you’ll find a different version of the tequila sunrise drink containing orange juice. This is the more widely accepted recipe (although the measures could vary).


  • 1 ounce Tequila
  • 4 ounces Orange Juice
  • grenadine


Fill a highball or cocktail glass with ice. Pour the tequila into the glass of ice and then add the OJ. Then squirt a generous amount of grenadine into the tequila drink. Serve with a lemon slice or a pineapple wedge if you want to get fancy.

There are many variations of the tequila sunrise. Some bars or clubs may add a splash of 7-up and / or lime bar mix (margarita mix).


If you enjoyed this little history of the tequila sunrise cocktail, do check out the rest of our drink recipes.