Let's Talk Tequila + Mezcal. Win Win Win!

Let's Talk Tequila & Mezcal

We recently had the pleassure of speaking to our great friends at DrinksPlinks about premium tequila, mezcal and ice-cubes! With the resurgence of these fine agave distilates, we often get asked about the best way to drink them.

While the best way is the one you enjoy the most, when it comes to adding ice-cubes to either the neat spirit or a cocktail derivitive there is only one ice-cube mold to use and that's from DrinksPlinks. We sell the best DrinksPlinks ice-cube molds here.

We also teamed up with them to put together an incredible give away - details below.

Our short interview is featured below.

Win Win Win!

Subscribe to our mailing list below in the month of October and go in the draw to win our Magnificant Mezcal Prize Pack from TopShelfTequila.com.au and DrinksPlinks valued at $200. 

The pack includes 

  • A bottle of San Cosme Espadin Mezcal (700ml)
  • 2 x Riedel Bar Rocks glasses 
  • 1 x DrinksPlinks Hexagon ice tray
  • 1 x DrinksPlinks Pyramid ice tray

Entrants must be over 18 and live in Australia. We’ll draw the winner at random on 1 November and notify the winner by email.

Featured Interview

Australia’s tequila expert introduces us to a whole new world. 

Tequila likes to party. Think late-night shots in a noisy bar when you probably should have been home hours ago. Tequila’s up for whatever’s going down. We’re talking rounds of fiery shots, lots of salt, and wedges of lime. Sound familiar? [We also remember the headache the next day …  and it wasn’t pretty.]

Just like us, tequila has grown up. We sat down with Brad Woolf from www.topshelftequila.com.au to discover why Australians are falling in love with this sophisticated spirit and why it’s completely different from the shots we partied with years ago. 

Brad says those shots are actually poorly made, mass production Mixto not 100% agave Tequila. They’re a mixture of fermentable sugars from the agave plant (a fleshy succulent native to Mexico) and 49% “other” sugar (usually cane sugar) with additional flavouring, colouring, aromas and glycerin for added mouthfeel. Mixto was developed in Mexico in the 1930s to counter the shortage of agave after the demand for Tequila rose sharply when prohibition was lifted in the US.

There’s plenty of Mixto around, but if you choose tequila from the top shelf you’ll have a very different experience.

What is Tequila?

Like Champagne from the Champagne region in France, true tequila comes from Tequila in central Mexico. It’s made from 100% blue agave (Agave tequilana). Whilst technically there can still be up to 1% of additives for rectification, the stuff we’re talking about is additive-free. There are no added flavours, colouring or additional sugar. Tequila is made by fermenting the sugary juices from the agave plant and then distilling it. The first large-scale distillery and mass plantings of blue agave date back to the 1600s. So important is the history and culture behind tequila production, the town and surrounding fields of agave are listed as a World  Heritage Site.

How To Drink Top Shelf Tequila

Top quality tequila is best enjoyed neat, or on slow-melting ice. [We recommend a DrinksPlinks pyramid or hexagon.] It’s a drink to sip and savour, not slam down. 

Pair unaged or slightly aged Tequila with fish, chicken and white meats. Its lighter style has herbaceous characteristics and a slight sweetness and is easy sipping in summer. It can certainly be mixed in a cocktail like a classic Margarita, Paloma or Tequila Sour but Brad says ensure all the ingredients are top quality for a superior tequila cocktail.

Longer aged tequila takes on more of the oaky notes of the barrel. These Tequilas are heavier in style and work brilliantly in winter with red meat or sipped around a fire after dinner with chocolate, raisins and dried fruit. How good does that sound!

“Australians looking for a different spirit are discovering Tequila,” and Brad says “They love what they’re finding.”

“Growth in sales of tequila has been phenomenal. Australia now ranks third behind the US and Canada when it comes to consumption of 100% agave Tequila and given our small population base, that’s remarkable.”

Quality tequilas retail from as little as $70 a bottle so pricing isn’t as much of a barrier as education. Brad says always check the label to ensure it’s made from 100% agave and from a reputable distillery.

What is Mezcal?

There’s a lot of confusion around Mezcal and whether it’s a type of Tequila. In fact, the opposite is true. Brad explains that Mezcal is the mother of the agave spirit category and Tequila is a type of Mezcal [just as Scotch is a type of Whisky].

Mezcal can be made with a number of agave varieties (there are some 50 different varieties grown in Mexico), while Tequila is strictly made from Agave Tequilana. There are also strict certified regions where only tequila or mezcal can be produced.

Mezcal has definite smoky characteristics which come from the way the spirit is produced. Agave is harvested and trimmed back to the heart (or pina). The pinas are roasted in earthen pits for 3 to 4 days, before being mashed and left to ferment. The mash is then distilled and bottled or left to age in oak barrels. The traditional process goes back centuries.

Like wine, Mezcal (and tequila) is subject to terroir meaning it takes on the characteristics from the region and soil where the agave is grown. And depending on where it’s from, the taste of mezcal can vary enormously; ranging from smoky, earthy and funky to subtly sweet and chocolatey or herbaceous and vegetal. 

Brad says the beauty about mezcal is there is so much to discover.

“My advice for new mezcal drinkers is to approach the spirit with an open mind. Try mezcals from different regions and allow your palate to find the flavours it enjoys. It comes down to personal taste, but there’s a lot to explore.”

How To Drink Mezcal

Serve mezcal straight up or on the rocks. It’s the perfect way to experience the subtle earthy, smoky notes and other characteristics from the region where the mezcal was produced. Taste it, smell it, savour it. Don’t shoot it!

And don’t embrace the worm. Brad says the worm in the bottle is a marketing tool and if you see one, it’s probably not premium Mezcal.

Make A Mezcal Negoni

This smoky Negroni is an interesting riff on the classic. 

We like ours in a Rocks or Old Fashioned glass, served with a DrinksPlinks Hexagon or Pyramid ice shape to keep it super chilled, and garnished with an orange twist. 

Ingredients

45ml San Cosme Espadin Mescal
45ml Campari
45ml Sweet Vermouth
Peel of orange rind

To Make

Pour each spirit into an ice filled Rocks glass, stir until chilled and garnish with the orange.
Enjoy.

Win Win Win!

Subscribe to our mailing list below in the month of October and go in the draw to win our Magnificant Mezcal Prize Pack from TopShelfTequila.com.au and DrinksPlinks valued at $200. 

The pack includes 

  • A bottle of San Cosme Espadin Mezcal (700ml)
  • 2 x Riedel Bar Rocks glasses 
  • 1 x DrinksPlinks Hexagon ice tray
  • 1 x DrinksPlinks Pyramid ice tray

Entrants must be over 18 and live in Australia. We’ll draw the winner at random on 1 November and notify the winner by email.

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37 thoughts on “Let's Talk Tequila + Mezcal. Win Win Win!

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Kahlee E Greaves

I can’t wait to try this drop!

November 3, 2022 at 12:13pm
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Susan Graham

Thank you for the recipe ideas for such a great party cocktail

October 27, 2022 at 15:39pm
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Michelle Ward

Oh Wow, I’m seriously channeling my trip to Mexico in the 90’s … and it was Mezcal-magical!

October 26, 2022 at 17:57pm
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Robert Wenzler

Looking forward to tasting this!

October 26, 2022 at 17:57pm
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JOANNE MELITA

How exciting to get amongst friends and share this fab top shelf TopShelfTequila.! joanne Melita 17 Leigh street east bentleigh 3165 .,

Thanks for the opportunity !

October 26, 2022 at 17:57pm

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