El Proceso(the process)
La Tradición(the tradition)
The method for crafting a traditional mezcal traces its origins back to the Aztecs more than 200 years ago. It takes its name from the Aztec Nahuati word for "oven cooked pineapple," as the heart of the agave plant, called the "pina," looks similar to the body of a pineapple once its stalks are removed.
Although it is made from agave, mezcal is not tequila. Tequila comes strictly from a single type of agave called tequilana (blue agave) while mezcal can be produced from 28 agave varieties including blue agave, making tequila a form of mezcal. For mezcal, the agave piñas are placed in a large pit and covered. The piñas are then roasted for about four days in an above ground igloo-like oven or an underground oven with charcoal and stone. This produces mezcal’s distinct smoky flavor. Generations of this traditional distillation method earns mezcal the well deserved title as tequila’s tastefully sophisticated older cousin.
El Gusano(the worm)
The infamous worm, or “gusano”, is actually the larva of a species of moth that lives on the agave plant. While finding insects in your beverage is normally not a good thing, the worm in mezcal serves as evidence of its high proof and good fortune. So, if you find yourself having too good of a time enjoying your Wild Shot mezcal, just blame it on the worm!
What is Mezcal?