We’re here to bring you up to speed on the basics of Mexican Spirits. Let’s start off with the real differences between Tequila and Mezcal.
First Thing To Learn: Tequila is Mezcal but Mezcal is not Tequila.
Think Russian Nesting Dolls. Mezcal and Tequila are both agave-based liquors. However, Tequila can only be made from one type of agave. Tequila is made from Blue Agave or Weber Agave. Unlike Tequila, Mezcal (traditional spelling: mescal) is a spirit that can be produced from upwards of 28 varieties of the agave plant from many areas of Mexico – from the city of Oaxaca to some areas of the states of Guerrero, Durango, San Luis Potosi & Zacatecas. The flavor profile is very different than Tequila because it is typically smokier. If you are a Scotch drinker, Mezcal is to Tequila what Scotch is to Whiskey.
Types of Mezcal & Tequila:
- Blanco: Has not been aged and is thus clear and generally without the flavors aging would impart. Since it doesn’t need to age, this can be bottled immediately.
- Reposado: Aged in wooden barrels for 2-11 months.
- Añejo: Aged in wooden barrels for 12+ months.
What are the Mezcals you should be trying?
Dry & balanced. It’s light aging left this Repasado with a medium intensity and just a hint of smokiness.
Because the agave was steamed rather than smoked, Zignum Silver doesn’t have a smoky flavor to it at all. It’s lightly citrusy and very clean.
Smoky & perfect for mixing. It’s a bartender favorite for smoky fruity cocktails.
Mezcal Cocktails & Drinks
So, judgement time has come, what should you order at a restaurant to look smart?
- The Sierra Madre Sunrise Cocktail