Making Mescal

IMG_1611On the road to the Tlacolula market you drive past some of the best Agave farms in the region.   One of the producers has their entire production process open for who ever wants to stop in and take a peak.  You are also welcome to try some of there product.  Next time I would be very interested in touring Del Maguey single village mescal. Agave plants take 8-10 years (or longer) to mature, the first part of the process requires you take off all the leaves and what you are left with is the piña – which is also the Spanish word for pineapple, you can see why they call it that.IMG_1610IMG_1614Then the piña gets chopped up and roasted in a big pit in the ground.IMG_1617IMG_1620The roasted plants are then put in a large grinder IMG_1615And with some horse powerIMG_1618 Ground into a fine mush which is then double distilledIMG_1619IMG_1623 IMG_1624 IMG_1626From right to left you have Joven (young white) the one that Mezcal drinkers prefer these days as they see the others as copying Tequila which is perceived as a more industrial “product” not artisanal like Mezcal. Then you have two Resposado’s one con el gusano (with a worm) and the other just plain.  Resposado means the Mezcal has been “rested” or aged in Oak barrels for around 11 months give or take and finally the Anejo can be aged for many years – depends on the distiller.IMG_1627In addition to having many, many flavors at this particular distillery – everything from coffee to strawberry (really strawberry Mezcal?  Maybe the Pina Colada one was even worse, but hey if there is a market who am I to say anything) they also had several rather, um, creative vessels to hold the Mezcal in, everything from ejaculating erect penis bottles, breast and naked women bottles, but my favorite was the gasoline jugs.IMG_1630 So there you have it, Mezcal in a nutshell.  Cheers!IMG_1633

About urbanfoodguy

I'm a self taught cook with a dedication to buying and eating food that is as humanely and sustainably raised as possible. Which is why in addition to recipes you will see a lot of environmental/political reporting here. I started cooking when I was about 6, it's something I always loved to do. Watching Graham Kerr - aka "The Galloping Gourmet" - was what got me started and I have never really looked back. Over the years I've been a private chef, a caterer, and a food stylist for magazines such as Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, Real Simple, Oprah, Martha Stewart's Everyday Food and many more. I've also worked in the prep kitchen for the Food Network on the Bobby Flay and Paula Deen shows. Now I work at home in my kitchen sharing with you here recipes that I create or that other people have created that inspire me and I think you will like. I love my neighborhood (the Lower East Side of Manhattan) and I love to travel. Because NYC is such a big place I tend to focus mostly on my 'hood and the ones that are close by: The East Village, Bowery, Chinatown and Williamsburg. My love of travel has no limits really, I'm always ready to get on a plane. I was lucky enough to have a business for many years that allowed me to spend a lot of time in South East Asia. These days I've been spending time in Mexico, Germany, Canada and the West Coast of the U.S., but check back you never know where I might end up. I do consulting, cooking classes, and freelance lifestyle writing so if you are interested please send me a note:
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