Think of mezcal as tequila’s sultry cousin – it’s a little smokier, earthy, mysterious and full of character. Still a little unsure about mezcal? Here are a few tips on how to get started!
Think of mezcal as tequila’s sultry cousin – it’s a little smokier, earthy, mysterious and full of character. It is best enjoyed when sipped slowly and savoured, and is Mexico’s answer to a single malt whisky. So what’s the difference between tequila and mezcal? Tequila is made from only one type of blue agave plant, however mezcal can be made from more than 30 types of agave plant. Its complex flavours are derived from the way the spirit is processed, it’s wood roasted, crushed and distilled in batches, taking up to 30 days to produce – a hand crafted process that has been carried down through producers for hundreds of years.
Still a little unsure about mezcal? Here are a few tips on how to get started:
★ If you’re new to drinking mezcal, try and go for 45 proof or less. This will be a smoother introduction to the spirit, giving you time to savour the flavours and aromas. ★ Stick to mezcal that is 100% agave and stay away from ‘mixto’ – this is mezcal which also contains alcohol distilled from cane sugar… hangover alert! ★ Good quality mezcals are not just ‘smoky’, and have many dimensions and interesting flavours including dry chili, chipotle, roasted bell pepper and coffee beans. ★ Avoid the ‘worm’ or larvae that you often see at the bottom of bottles, this is usually a gimmick for cheap spirits that are used to attract gringos (foreigners!).
Top Tips at Super and Lucha Loco:
★ Starting to get hooked on the idea of mezcal? We recommend beginning with our Don Amado Rustico on the rocks, which has hints of salted caramel, green pepper, fruit and light smokiness. Check out our advice on how to drink tequila like a Mexican in last month’s issue! ★ If you’re not keen on sipping mezcal on its own, then try it in a cocktail! Mezcal is a versatile spirit that mixes well with other flavours. We recommend starting with our El Pepino (refreshing cucumber with spicy/sweet jalapeno agave), the El Megroni (think a Negroni with a smoky twist) or our Oaxacan Old Fashioned (smoky, smooth, sour and spicy) for something a little more bold. Available at Super Loco and Lucha Loco, prices vary. See you soon amigo! ¡Salud!