Growing up, Michael Dudek was obsessed with the Alamo.

“I grew up in Baltimore, Maryland, and as a kid, it was one of my favorite stories,” Dudek says. “I don’t know why. I think maybe because of the John Wayne version of it. I watched it with my dad, and it really impacted me.”

Now, Dudek lives and works in the Alamo City as the food and beverage director at Hotel Contessa, located along the River Walk.

“Never in a million years did I think that I would end up moving to San Antonio,” Dudek says. “My first job in San Antonio was with the San Antonio Marriott Rivercenter on the River Walk. And when I came for my interview in 2008, my room overlooked the Alamo, which just totally blew me away.”

Dudek created the potent drink that includes mezcal and gunpowder tea—perhaps a subtle reference to the fight that occurred a quarter mile away. The green tea gets its name from its leaves that are tightly rolled into small pellets resembling gunpowder.

“To me, San Antonio is the Alamo,” Dudek says. “It’s the birthplace of liberty for Texas.”

Battle of the Alamo Cocktail

This alcoholic homage to Texas history and San Antonio’s great landmark features a cheeky ingredient—gunpowder tea.
Prep Time 3 mins
Servings 1


  • 1 ¼ ounces rye whiskey
  • ¾ ounce mezcal
  • ¼ ounce simple syrup
  • 3 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1 ounce cold gunpowder tea (can also use black tea if gunpowder tea isn’t available)


  • If you’re not using pre-brewed tea, brew tea and place it in the fridge to chill.
  • Add everything but the tea to a pint glass filled with large ice cubes, and stir.
  • Top with the cold tea.