4 bottles to discover the complexity of the spirit

While many people grab a tequila to enjoy in that margarita or paloma, a distinctive mezcal can add nuance to the glass. While the traditional spirit can be steeped in mystery, the art and craft of distillation can transform that first sip into many more. These four bottles showcase the diversity of mezcal.

Choosing a mezcal can be as complex as choosing any other spirit. Methods, regions and other nuances make one bottle stand out from another. While the ultimate choice comes down to personal preference, appreciating the differences can foster stronger conversation around the table.

Although the initial boom in popularity may have waned, the Mexican spirit continues to resonate with many people. Whether it’s the smoky quality, the subtle notes, or something else entirely, there are plenty of reasons to have a bottle or two on the shelf.

Which four distinctive mezcal bottles deserve a second pour?

Mezcal El Silencio

As one of the brands that has been part of the mezcal boom, this offering is meant to celebrate the Mexican avant-garde. By focusing on the craftsmanship that goes into creating the spirit, the story is woven into the bottle. It may not be the first taste on the lips, but this art of mezcal brings people back.

With El Silencio Espadin, the taste notes have a slight earthy side. Even described as hearty, the spice notes linger in the background. While the spirit has a pronounced finish, it is intriguing and inviting. Mixed in a cocktail, it can be very pleasant.

Lobos 1707 Mezcal Artisanal

While this brand’s celebrity raffle draws plenty of people to open a bottle, the connection to the past is reason to dig a little deeper. From roasting to the Egyptian stone mill, these special methods enhance the flavor. Although the hot spices can be a little subtle, the overall drinking experience is robust and memorable. From the nose-tingling peppery notes to the bold finish, this bottle is one to keep on hand.

Mezcal UNION

While many people enjoy the smoky notes that are often present in a mezcal, Mezcal UNIÓN has a cleaner, crisper finish. For drinkers who prefer this liqueur in cocktails, this is a refreshing choice. Consider transforming this classic cocktail with this accessible offering.

Contrauz

While a mezcal may have certain general characteristics, Contraluz uses a different technique to increase the sweetness of each sip. Through a signature activated carbon filtration process, the liquor is colorless but still has the signature smoke.

With the Contraluz, the radiance of green agave, citrus and other fruits contrasts with the sweetness of vanilla and cocoa. It can be enjoyed both neat and mixed with a cocktail.

Sharon D. Cole