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Recommended liquor: So that you can start mixing your cocktails as soon as your box arrives, why not go get your bottle of mezcal reposado now? Each of this month's featured bartenders has a recommendation for you! Any of them will work well for all three recipes found in this box, depending on your preference, as well as take your mezcal exploration to the next level!
“Xicaru Reposado is a great spirit for those new to mezcal as well as the seasoned mezcal drinker,” says Nova Clark. Xicaru Reposado’s smoke is softened by its vanilla and caramel notes. The company gives back to their community to boot! Xicaru donates to a local children’s home in rural Oaxaca, helping about 65 children.
As Sam Jimenez notes, “Vago is committed to the sustainability of agave, with fair trade practices and very unique and original batches. They work closely with their master distillers to produce an agave spirit that is second to none.” This is a true connoisseur’s mezcal, and as such, they take great care to note the terroir and character of each bottle. Vago Elote, which has notes of smoky sweet corn and tropical fruits, is a mezcal that's made like gin, but instead of botanicals, it's roasted corn in a basket vapor pass in distillation for the second pass. Though it’s not aged like the other two recommendations, it is in its own way an enhanced version of the original.
Los Amantes Mezcal was one of the first brands encountered by Marshall Altier as a young, inquisitive bartender: “Los Amantes was the first officially certified palenque (distillery) for international distribution, and it is also the first mezcal (and still one of only a handful) to reach the US that had been rested in oak barrels and recognized as reposado.” The influence that comes from the liquid resting in French oak barrels from 6 to 8 months makes Los Amantes Reposado infinitely mixable, but lends itself specifically to classic cocktails—and a great addition to your home bar!
Recommended amount: To make all 12 drinks, you'll need 22 oz of mezcal reposado; a medium (750 ml) bottle will be your best bet.
Recommended barware: A few different jiggers that measure 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, 1, 1 1/2, and 2 oz, as well as a strainer, shaker, bar spoon, and mixing glass. These are not all strictly necessary, but will improve your mixology experience.
Recommended glassware: A highball glass and a rocks glass.
Recommended ice: To make all 12 cocktails in one go, you'll need about 6 pounds of ice (6 ice trays’ worth).
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