Refreshing Melon Chili Drink

Sweet, spicy, sour flavors mingle in this delicious Refreshing Melon Chili Drink.

Melon and Chili Juice

“Don’t be afraid to play with your food” She said,

“Be passionate with your food” She said,

“Taste it at every stage of preparation” She said,

I think I have a handle on the first two, but when it comes to that last one – well, I am a work in progress.

The “She” I am referring to happens to be Anne Quatrano, an extremely passionate local chef, cookbook author and proponent of sustainability; whose food philosophy revolves around “using basics to produce the spectacular“!

From what I have heard, she and her husband, Clifford Harrison, put this food philosophy into action at 6 of Atlanta’s happening restaurants- Bacchanalia, Floataway Café, Star Provisions, Provisions To Go, Quinones at Bacchanalia, and Abattoir. And from what I have seen –and tasted– she lives out her food philosophy in what she prepares.

Our paths crossed briefly at The James Beard Foundation‘s Taste America® Culinary event this past Saturday hosted by Sur La Table. When I said our paths crossed, what I really meant was that I sat in the audience and did the “tasting” while she did the cooking and held an informative demonstration. Yes, at times, I even surprise myself at how quiet I can be, and, how well I can listen -when my mouth is full of food!

sur la table

Chef Anne Quatrano and her assistants prepared 2 dishes during the hour long event to fill our stomachs with: a Crostini of Fig, Caramelized Onions and Lonzino and a Melon and Chile Soup with Poached Shrimp, all while filling our heads with a smorgasbord of info on curing and smoking meats and the challenges of composting and the pairing and balancing of different flavors.

Her flavor combinations in the Melon and Chili Soup spun my head around – all 360 degrees around! She used some cantaloupe, watermelon and some honeydew melon – and paired it up with some apple cider vinegar, salt and some fresh cayenne and Padron chilies and made this incredible base – I was so intrigued, I came home had to give it a go.

melons chilis

I didn’t use any honey dew, but I peeled and chopped some watermelon and some cantaloupe into my blender to make this Melon Chili Drink.

melon chili juice in fridge

After blending it into a nice puree, I threw in some jalapeno chilies as I didn’t have any cayenne and Padron and let it sit in the fridge overnight.

The next morning, I strained out the melon pulp and threw in some apple cider vinegar and salt and some more chilies.

And that’s when I had a revelation!

melon chili juice separation

Seeing I was inspired by Anne Quatrano to work on trying to “Taste it at every stage of preparation”, I decided to pour me some of this melon chili drink and taste it – before I prepared the shrimp that was thawing in the sink.

And THAT’s when I realized the REAL reason I don’t do tastings as I go along – because I have the tendency to change the course, to not let a dish reach it’s full potential – because a taste can lead to way, way more than JUST a taste – and before you know it, there’s an empty glass jar where there once was one overflowing with a delectable melon and chili concoction!

Melon chili yum (1 of 1)
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Melon and Chili Juice

Refreshing Melon Chili Drink

5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 4
Author: Shashi
Sweet, spicy, sour flavors mingle in this delicious Refreshing Melon Chili Drink.


  • 1 medium cantaloupe melon
  • 1 small seedless watermelon
  • 2 jalapeno chili peppers or less depending on taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  • Chop melons and add to a food processor or blender
  • Blend well and throw in some sliced pieces of jalapeno and let sit overnight or a couple of hours
  • Strain the pulp from the liquid using a sieve or a cheesecloth
  • Add in apple cider vinegar and salt and more chili slices -if so desired


Serving: 1g | Calories: 55kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 1g | Sodium: 279mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 11g
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?Tag @SavorySpin or tag #savoryspin so we can share your ceation.

**I was not compensated in any way for my review or attendance at this event, which I found out about through my Atlanta Food Blogger Society membership**

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  1. I need to work on tasting my food at every stage of the cooking/preparation process as well. I do love the colour of your soup and I think a little bit of heat from the jalepenos would be wonderful xx

  2. I know summer is coming to an end in the US but in Mumbai, the temperatures are seriously warming up….so this recipe couldn’t have come at a more perfect time! It sounds so refreshing, lovely colour too! This culinary event sounds awesome- I would love to see a professional chef in action, especially one who really works with what/he she has available i.e. local, sustainable + basic ingredients!

    1. Khushboo – this was such an awesome combo of flavors – when I first tasted chef Anne’s concoction, I was blown away – the different layers from the spicy to the sweet to the salty to the sour…wow!

    1. What??? You are incredibly creative, Maureen – but I guess it’s all a matter of perspective – I could never dream up a patti like the one you whipped up!

  3. I can picture this melon and chill soup and love it. I so see how that would work out grand on your taste palate. I personally love playing with my food and I am so glad you had this experience. I would have love to have attended. Have a super week. Take care, BAM

    1. So…..maybe…just maybe if you had stopped here in Atlanta instead of whizzing through at “eleventy million” mph – you could have accompanied me – I had an extra ticket…just saying…but, you could make it up to me by sending me some GF mini brownies…just saying…
      Thanks for pinning and the Twitter luv on the beets!

  4. I love this! And omg i’m so jealous you got to do the James Beard Foundations tasting. That must have been an awesome experience! And lol i have the same problem with tasting… things rarely get finished.. cookie dough remains uncooked and eaten on spoons, etc 🙂

    1. This was an awesome experience Charlotte, – they had 2 hour long tastings/demos and another in the evening that was longer – I only had time to spare to attend one…but some Atlanta Food Blogger Society members attended more.

      P.S. I learnedmy lesson – am not tasting any more – hopefully I won’t bake a cake with salt instead of sugar again!

  5. Love that and I think the combination of the refreshing melon with the spicy pepper is beautiful. A friend of mine makes an appetizer with watermelon and jalapeno, it’s delicious. Great post and a very innovative chef.

    1. Ooh – an appetizer with watermelon and jalapeno sounds delish! Suzanne, I had never tried melons with chilies before – my tastebuds were rocking! 🙂

  6. Loving this post Shashi! The Sur la Table store right down the street from where I live always hosts a series of free, in-store consumer events including book signings, tastings and cooking demonstrations. It’s such a cool spot. I wish I had more time and could attend some of those events… ;(

    1. I am jealous – you have a Sur La Table just down the street? The one I went to was a 45 minute drive away…on second thought, if I had one close by, I will be spending way to much time and money there…that’s it, am not jealous anymore 🙂

    1. Kim – we are having TECHmunch next Friday here in Atlanta and Southwest airlines is having a HUGE sale and I have a guest room…just saying… 🙂 Hope you had a wonderful birthday yesterday!

  7. What an awesome event and so glad it inspired you too 🙂 This soup looks so refreshing and I love the flavor combinations 🙂 So so pretty too – pinning!

    1. Cassandra – this was so good – the sweet melons,the salt, the apple cider vinegar and the chilies – I was mesmerized – the chef was BRILLIANT!

  8. That definitely sounds different, but in a good way! I’m with you on the “let’s just have a taste…oh crap, where did the entire pot/bowl/pitcher go?” moments. 😡

  9. That culinary event looks like it was so much fun! I am doing something like that next month. Love the soup…I love new and different flavor combos.

  10. Oh you are so funny!!! I can’t tell you how many times, I’ve totally changed direction or just “stopped” after tasting something “in progress”. Love this “juice” and that kick of jalapeno slices were the perfect finish. Much better than poached shrimp in my opinion. 😉

5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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