One Worm or Two?

Yesterday I tried mezcal for the first time. Sipping a little straight out of the bottle, uh, well, I mean, out of a shot glass (what guy would ever drink right out of a bottle?), it has a nice earthy flavor to it. I already like it better than tequila, even the pricer bottles like Patron.

According to the liquor wizards at wikipedia, mezcal differs from tequila in that mezcal has to be made with 80% agave, as opposed to about 50% for tequila, and tequila uses blue agave. There's also regional issues, a French sort of thing, and single village versions, and all that kind of stuff. Mezcal also comes with a complimentary worm in the bottle. Mine came with two. I'm just glad it isn't a scorpion, which wikipedia says is done occasionally. Talk about a sting in the tail.

So after the initial glug, uh, sip, of it straight up, I tried a recipe from my calendar: 2 to 1 mezcal to Grand Marnier, with instant coffee sprinkled on top. I used espresso powder. Not bad at all. The orange and coffee and smoky mezcal-ness were a good combination.

Second, after my liver had time to process those 3 ounces of alcohol, I made one from, the Del Maguey company site, which has lots of really interesting mezcal concoctions. This one called for chilled espresso (I needed a good excuse to go to Starbux anyway), mezcal, Kahlua, and Tia Maria. I may have gotten a bit more than 2 ounces of espresso because the it tended to overpower everything else. The sweet liqueurs helped tone down any potential bitterness, and I could still get a sense of the mezcal. Cut down on the espresso, maybe use a little more mezcal, and this would be a great after-dinner drink.