So you are one of the lucky ones and mezcal found you. It probably happened as you danced on a beach under the Mexican starry skies or because you’re a foodie and a cocktail enthusiast like us. Maybe your friends told you about it, because once mezcal finds you, you just want to spread the word of the spirit.
Now you want to tell all your friends about it because mezcal is simply delicious, fun, and very sociable. If consumed responsibly, it seems you are even spared the consequences of the hangover the next morning thanks to its unique plant properties.
If you’re outside of Mexico, chances are not many people know mezcal (yet!) and you often get the question: ‘What is mezcal?’
At some point we all probably heard, or even said: ‘It’s like a smoky tequila’.But describing mezcal as a ‘smoky tequila’ is the same as attempting to describe Pinot Noir as an earthy Merlot – sommeliers and connoisseurs everywhere are really genuinely mortified.
In fact, Mezcal is a distilled agave spirit made in specific regions of Mexico, the most famous being the beautiful state of Oaxaca. ‘But isn’t tequila also made from agave?’, they ask.
Yes, just like Pinot Noir and Merlot are made from grapes along with all other wines.
Technically, tequila belongs to the mezcal family of spirits. However, the production methods of mezcals and tequila are very different today.
The biggest lie in a bottle, if you ask me, is the fact that to be legally labeled as ‘tequila’, the spirit only needs to be a minimum of 51% of agave, meaning the other 49% can be additives, sugars, aguardiente etc. – yikes!
We all have a bad tequila night story and it’s likely because of the additives that go with most of the cheaper mass produced tequilas we find out of Mexico.
On the other hand, the production of artisanal mezcal is highly regulated to maintain quality and taste. It’s 100% agave, no additives! We’ll talk more about what gives mezcal it’s complex flavours and it’s true artisanal production methods in our next diary entries…
We are very proud of the fact that we have converted nearly all of our friends to mezcal, as you will probably do soon!
Little pro tip: 100% conversion rate guaranteed when making the introduction with a Tommy’s mezcal margarita garnished with sal de gusano rim.
– 60ml (2oz) of Mezcal Xamán
– 30ml (1oz) of freshly squeezed lime juice
– 15ml (½oz) of agave syrup
FINISH: sal de gusano rim and lime wheel
The journey doesn’t end here…