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Mezcal made from Agave - Hong Kong

Mezcal, is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from Maguey (Agave plant in its scientific name), native to Mexico. The word mezcal comes from Nahuatl word "mexcalli" which means " oven-cooked agave stalks".

 

The maguey grows in many parts of Mexico, although due to the peculiar climate of the semi dry/semi warm valleys in Oaxaca-Mexico, and also combined with the type of soil of this land; Oaxaca has become the ideal place for growing agave and the main state producer of mezcal in the country.

 

 

Traditionally, mezcal is handcrafted by small-scale producers. A village in Mexico can contain dozens of production houses, called “fabricas” or “palenques”, each using methods that have been passed down from generation to generation, some using the same techniques practiced 200 years ago. Nevertheless, not all these producers are certified by  COMERCAM  that is the main institution commissioned to certify the quality process so the Mezcal can be commercialized.

 

There are many techniques to produce Mezcal, but commonly it begins with the harvesting of an 8 years old maguey, then the underground cooking of the "piñas" (chopped maguey in the form of a pineapple) inside pits surrounded by volcanic rocks for around 5 days (this gives the handcrafted Mezcal its distinctive smoky flavour), then the "piñas" are crushed by a stone wheel turned by a horse and the leftover is naturally fermented in large vats or barrels with water added. After a week in fermentation, the alcohol is distilled in copper pots; at that moment we finally have Mezcal.

 

Some kinds of Mezcal have a bottled worm (Gusano de Maguey), this is a larva that naturally parasites the agave plant and also participate in the reproduction of this plant. The worm is used to change and soften the flavour of white Mezcal.

 

Enjoy this marvellous and ancient Mexican Beverage in Hong Kong (HK)!