I first became acquainted with Mezcal doing a Level 2 Spirits Award at the WSET – Wine & Spirit Education Trust.
There is long and proud tradition of spirit production in Mexico that parallels that of whiskey manufacture in Ireland or Scotland. There are rules & regulations to get any spirit geek excited – and it certainly helps I was hooked immediately by the rich & complex flavours contained within the Mezcals I tasted.
Terroir is key to Mezcal.
Geographically protected to certain regions within Mexico & made with varietals of the long lived agave plant, Mezcal is the artisanal based small scale product to the mass produced sister spirit Tequila.
The 2 Mezcal Amores sent showcased the results of 2 different varietals of agave with the same production methods.
Joven in both these expressions means unaged.
With a spirit as pure and unadulterated as Mexcal – no ageing is required.
Espadín Amores – as suggested in the name – is made from the Espadín agave which must be used to make Tequila – but Mezcal can use any variety of agave.
There is no harsh abrasiveness to this spirit.
It gently warms & caresses both the nose & palate with a richness of flavours.
A gentle soft sweetness combined with hints of leather or even tobacco from the roasting used to prepare the agave swirl around in the mouth in a comforting snug.
Lip smackingly enjoyable.
Cupreata Amores was even better!
Made from the Cupreata agave which matures for 8 to 13 years before being harvested. This mezcal possessed a deeper – even darker – cornucopia of complexity to hook me in even further to the charms of this Mexican spirit.
There was a contrast to the almost muscovado dark sweetness at the start to a warming stewed note at the end.
Wild yeasts are used in fermenting – much like the popular Brett yeasts of craft beer fame – but without the sour tart results – funky perhaps – but not overpowering – just well balanced & enticing.
I had to have more!
No wonder there is a fan club as fanatical as whiskey has for this fabulous spirit.