The centuries-old discussion between mezcal vs. tequila is still continuing to this day. Which one really is the best? You may be more familiar with tequila, but what’s familiar isn’t always better. Sometimes the best things are kept secret, and when it comes to mezcal, that truly is the case.
mezcal vs tequila
Combine a unique mixture of agave species, smokey rich flavor, and traditional handcrafted techniques and you’ve got the magic of mezcal.
Mezcal is simply the name for a spirit distilled from an agave plant. By definition, all tequila is mezcal, but not all mezcal is tequila. I may have lost you there, but it really is simple. What distinctively sets mezcal apart from tequila is the processes and techniques used in creating the spirit.
More agave means more variety in flavor
While tequila is only made using the Weber blue agave, mezcal can be made from about 30 different types of agave. Each combination of agave species is unique to the brand that distills it and this is what makes each type of mezcal so special.
These sacred recipes are kept secret for a reason. Through generations of trial and error, the perfect combinations of agave have been crafted into what we really love about mezcal; the variety of flavors!
On top of a thoughtful combination of agave, you’ll find an even more intricate process behind distilling the spirit.
Mezcal is thoughtfully handcrafted, from start to finish
Mass-produced alcohol, like tequila, mainly relies on an industrial process to create large batches. This is not the case when it comes to mezcal. Mezcal is often handmade from beginning to end, using traditional processes that have been passed down for many generations.
Mezcal takes more time to harvest, prep, and cook. From the soil to the weather, the environment where the agaves are grown significantly changes how the agaves will taste. Jimadores, the farmers who grow and harvest these agaves, have a very close relationship with their work and take great pride in the quality of their agaves.
This deep connection between people and the earth can be found in other aspects of creating mezcal as well, like how it’s cooked. That distinct smokey flavor that mezcal is known for comes from the underground pits that the agaves are cooked in. These pits are dug by hand and lined with hot rocks that burn for about 24 hours before the cooking process even begins.
Thoughtfulness and tradition really are found in every aspect of creating mezcal. You don’t have to take our word for it, you can even taste it for yourself.
A taste like no other spirit
While a savory, smokey flavor is what mezcal is best known for, there is also one more factor that greatly contributes to the quality of the taste. Mezcal is made with 100% agave, whereas tequila only needs a minimum of 51% agave and is usually mixed with other sugars or alcohol. The purity of agave in mezcal is what makes the quality so much higher than its cousin, tequila.
This beautifully handcrafted spirit is also versatile. Although it’s mostly poured neat to sip on slowly, it’s also great for adding to classic cocktails. If you’re looking to give your next margarita or paloma a different kick, try replacing tequila with some mezcal instead.
From farming to cooking and distilling, mezcal’s artisanal processes truly make it a spirit unlike any other that you have tried before. Give it a try for yourself. When doing a taste test between mezcal and tequila, you’ll notice the differences in quality and taste right away.