Producing every perfect drop of mezcal takes many a hot desert day – close to 2,600 of them in fact – until the agave plants are ready for harvesting. When you consider that six million litres of the Mexican spirit is produced every year, that’s a lot of potential siesta time.
Mezcal is a move away from the tequila-slammer culture to hit UK bars in recent years: this fiery drink is one to be sipped and savoured. This is a beverage that manages to offer something new to the most adventurous drinkers, and at 44-54 percent ABV, it’s not for the feint of heart.
Eduardo Gomez Resendiz is head of international spirit importation company Amathus Drinks, and a self-proclaimed mezcal connoisseur. “It is a very delicate process,” he says. “The way in which every farmer crafts his mezcal is unique – and he will never tell you the secrets behind his personal recipe.”
“It is only recently that agave farmers have realised the potential for trading. While most will remain true to their traditions, some larger companies have experimented with ageing and flavouring the spirits. Because people are used to their aged tequila or aged rums, they expect a variety of aged mezcal. That’s fine, it adds to the trade possibilities. But you will never see a local drink anything but the traditional blend. No way!”