A refined exotic Licor from Mexico
Often with rowdy, boisterous, fun-filled occasions, it has had a long history of being extremely popular in the United States. For centuries, however, tequila’s other agave-derived beverage, Mezcal, has had both popularity and use as a medicine in Mexico.
Now, the alluring mezcal drink is being introduced to Americans. This Exotic Licor is a more refined form of beverage than tequila as it is meant to be sipped and savored. Many varieties are ranging in flavors that are earthy to fruity, almost like fine wines.
Even though both tequila and Mezcal are made from the agave plant, they have significant differences that set both apart. While tequila can be thought of as a mezcal, Mezcal cannot be thought of as a tequila. Both drinks are distilled from the maguey or agave plant, but this sacred spirit is typically produced in Oaxaca.
Some mezcal varieties are made outside of the state of Oaxaca. Still, tequila is only made in 5 States under Mexican law. Mexican law does not apply the same standards to mezcals as to tequila. However, Mezcal can be made from many different varieties of the agave plant, including the tobala.
Oaxaca’s most popular spirit has also long been used by native Oaxaca Habitants for medicinal purposes. It is believed that applying the Mezcal to the temples can relieve a person of migraine headaches. Applying the beverage to specific points on the body is also thought to be an excellent remedy for reducing a fever. There are many other ways that the drink is believed to have medicinal use in addition to being consumed to enhance a gathering or spark conversation.
Production begins with cutting the agave plant and then extracting the pinas. These are then roasted in a pit lined with rocks over charcoal covered with dirt and palms. This roasting process is what gives most all mezcal varieties that intensely smoky, barbecue-like flavor. Sometimes the chicken is used to add even more intense flavor.
Mezcal is as exciting as the Wine process. You can easily mix some Mezcal tastings with your visit to Oaxaca.
The region is full of Organic Mezcaleros, places where you can see the process of hundreds of years, ago still. It is your interest to visit these places. The best option will do this with a local Guide since the Mezcaleros are in remote locations. It is not easy to find them, you can lose a lot of time, and maybe your experience will not be the best.
We recommend 2 places that will enhance your visit to Oaxaca and the discovery of Mezcal.
The experience starts with getting to book a spot for the Mezcal Tasting. You have to do this in advance since they just accept 15 persons every hour and will depend on the number of groups they have the number of extra participants they will take. They are also open only in the evening.
Mezcaloteca offers a personal experience, you will be introduced to this spirit by one professional. One dedicated Maestro Mezcalero will explain the full process and will trigger your senses to taste and smell different types of Mezcal, inclusive by region.
The experience is to taste 3- 5 Mezcales from different partners, regions, and plants. The cost is around $ 15 to USD 20 and takes 1 hour the whole experience.
Open: 5 pm to 10 pm weekdays and 11 am to 10 pm Friday and Saturday
Address: Reforma 506, Oaxaca City Center
Phone: 0052 (951) 514 0082
You can combine this experience with any of the visits you will make once in Oaxaca City. The Mezcaleria is on the direction to Hierve el Agua and on the way back on the same highway of Mitla, Tule, and some other points of interest.
The Mezcal tasting here is slightly different since Mezcaleria Zignum is maybe the biggest Mezcaleria in Mexico. Therefore the visit they offer has a broad range of content. In the beginning, you will see a Video of the History of the Mezcaleria and Mezcal in the region, then continue to a vivid explanation in the Agave plantations to proceed to a full visit of the factory.
One recommendation is to ask them (if they don’t offer it) to take you to the Art Gallery they have. You will be able to see the most sublime handcraft and Textile from the region. You can help the foundation in buying some pieces that are for sale.
Ask your local tour Operator to book this experience in advance since it is not open every day and has specific schedules according to each day.
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