9 December 2018

From the bartender’s corner – Green Thumb

Opened a bottle of Don Amada Mezcal and tried this cocktail from their website. This has the Mezcal Rustico from them, green Chartreuse and simple syrup. (The original recipe by Polina Kharmas called for demerara syrup which is similar to simple syrup except it is made from something similar to brown sugar.

Liked the strong effect of chartreuse on the smoky mezcal.

17 November 2018

From the bartender’s corner – Mezcal #4: Montelobos

Unfortunately, I could not dig up much for this mezcal. Their website redirects to some mexican host ISP and then asks for userid and spanish. Which is of no help.
From the label, you can see that like the three other mezcals I have tried, this is also 100% espadin agave and is produced from the same state of Oxaca. (specifically, a town called Santiago Matatlan, by a company called Casa Montelobos). I also found out that they use copper (and not stainless steel) stills for distillation.

I am very curious to find out the origin of the picture of that wolf looking logo.

4 November 2018

From the bartender’s corner – Itzamana

That is an interesting name. Almost sounded like an Indian or Middle Eastern name. This cocktail is featured by Del Maguey. The original creators were Winston Greene and Adam Poley from Santa Fe, Mexico. This has mezcal, cynar (you can experiment with campari or aperol instead), orange liqueur and maraschino.

Tasted great. While the mezcal’s aroma was there, the palate was overwhelmingly brought in by the other ingredients.

27 October 2018

From the bartender’s corner – El Otro Verde

This is from the bar at Palenque Mezcaleria in Denver. I believe the originator of this recipe is one Nathan Schmit.
This is Mezcal with Grappa. I never thought the strong earthy tones of mezcal can be ever matched or overpowered by anything. I was wrong. Try grappa. One caution – both are very strong. So, make sure you keep sucking orange slices with slightly sprinkled salt if you can.

20 October 2018

From the bartender’s corner – Ginger’s Lost Island

Picked up the recipe from Food and Wine magazine. The creator of this is mixologist Bryan Dayton at the Oak at Fourteenth in Boulder, Colorado.

This is an explosion in your palate. Just check out the ingredients. Plus that earthy overtones of mezcal…

Cinnamon, Cardamom, Ginger Liqueur, Agave Nectar, Apple juice, fresh lime juice and of course, mezcal.

The proper garnish would be an apple fan but I am fresh out of apples at home!!

14 October 2018

From the bartender’s corner – Jewel of Oaxaca

One of the better cocktails involving mezcal. Mango pulp, fresh lime juice, jalapeno muddled, sugar syrup and mezcal.
Before you taste it, you might want to take in the aroma first. It is all mango. Moment it touches your tongue, the palate is all petrichor. But when you have finally gulped it, the sting of the jalapeno all over your mouth for a long time!

8 October 2018

From the bartender’s corner – Mezcal #3: Ilegal Mezcal Joven

Region: This Mezcal, like everyone I have tried so far, is also from Oaxaca state.

Agave: This is 100% espadin (specifically anguvstifolia hau).

Roasting: The “pinas” of the espadin agave are slashed and then roasted in underground pits. The pits are lined with river stones to keep the heat in and wood is lit for 5-7 days. The company claims that the wood is bought from certified sellers to avoid deforestation in the state.

Smashing: The slushy pinas are then smashed in the “tahona” by a horses pulling the millstone.

Fermentation: It is then left in vats made of pine wood for 7-10 days for the fermentation process to complete.

Distilling: Like the very first mezcal I had reviewed, the Ilegal Mezcal is also distilled in stainless steel first and then in copper vessels.

This is the Joven version – so it is not aged. It is bottled as a colorless alcohol and sold. They also have the reposado and anejo versions which are aged and therefore, brownish in color. The version available in America is 40% alcohol by volume.

There are stories about how this mezcal found its way out of Oaxaca mostly by smuggling into a particular bar in Guatemala. Of course, now it is done legally.

The petrichor smell is inescapable. The more you let it stay in your palate, the more you will exhale the earthy tones. Once the bite settles in, you can taste some sweetness in the taste.

Tried it chilled one day and one day on the rocks. Rocks is ruled out. It messes up the mezcal. But instead of neat at room temperature, the chilled one was more enjoyable to me.