NLF: El Recuerdo De Oaxaca

El Recuerdo De Oaxaca
76 Proof – Mezcal
Approx. $21.99 750ml

Jeff’s Review:
The other night I was looking at the amount of reviews on the site, and noticed the number of reviews for certain types of liquor were not very even. I know personal tastes do affect this greatly, even though we try not to let it. As of right now, some categories only have a couple reviews, like Gin, Mezcal, and Grain alcohol, while other like Rum and Whiskey are over thirty each. I decided this year I would do my best to even this out as much as I could, and luckily for Christmas, I received a bottle of Mezcal. Tony and I both reviewed Monte Alban way back and here are a few quotes from the review: Me: “Maybe we should have left this on the shelf.” and Tony: “…I mean really dirty, like a Tijuana donkey show with three midgets, a donkey, four ping pong balls, a coke bottle, a spatula, two band-aids, and a blender.” So let’s say I was happy to get our second mezcal review on the site, but I really wasn’t in the mood for any type of donkey show.

While at work I mentioned the bottle I was reviewing and no one seemed to really know the difference between tequila and mezcal. So before I actually start my review, I thought I would try to clear it up a bit. Tequila is made from juices of blue agave plant grown in specific geographical areas of Mexico. Mezcal is made specifically in the state of Oaxaca. It can be made from any variety of the agave plant. Mezcal is also smokey and less refined than tequila.

While I was looking up the easiest way to explain the differences between the two, I found a fact about Mezcal that I didn’t know, and for some reason, planted a funny image in my head. “Mezcal is a strong alcoholic drink, and in some tribes, women drink it to bear the pain of childbirth.” Now I don’t condone drinking during childbirth, but what better way is there to celebrate having a baby other than slamming back a bottle of mezcal?

Now onto tonight’s review of El Recuerdo De Oaxaca. The bottle looks really similar to the last bottle of mezcal, but thankfully, it tastes a lot better. However, the first shot didn’t sit well with me. I got a really smokey gasoline taste. But the second shot was surprisingly good. The gasoline flavor was gone and it was like I was drinking a full flavored tequila with a charred wood aftertaste.  Every shot that went down I expected and would wait for the burn, but it’s surprisingly smooth. I could have just stuck with doing shots of this all night without any problems, but I found a recipe that used mezcal as a floater in the drink and I had to try it.

It’s called a Smokey Margarita.

2 oz. Tequila
1 oz. Triple Sec
1 oz. Lime juice
3/4 tsp Simple Syrup
1 1/2 oz. Mezcal

Basically you make a margarita and float the 1 1/2 ounces of mezcal on the top, don’t stir it in. As you would expect from the name, the mezcal really adds a great smokey flavor and gives the drink a lot of depth. I really started liking El Recuerdo. I don’t think I could drink it all the time, but it’s a full flavored change from drinking your average tequila. I didn’t get to eat the worm from the last bottle, Tony got that honor, but this time. the worm is all mine.

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