Okay, so here’s my first post out of bar show and the bar awards. I’ll start by saying thanks to Dave Spanton and Simon McGoram from Spanton Media, the guys who produce the show, the awards, 4bars.com.au and Bartender magazine.
They sorted me out with press accreditation for the whole deal and seated me at the best table in the building. Phil Bayly from Cafe Pacifico and his crew were awesome.
To my left on the table was Steve from Ilegal Mezcal. He produces an artisnal mezcal that is quite something. The taste is smoky and earthy, but exceptionally refined. Kind of like a Talisker scotch without the attitude.
There’s a lot of crap online rubbishing mezcal in favour of tequila, largely due to a big amount of mezcal being produced for the wanker tourist market that comes down from SoCal to see a donkey show and cut loose. There are differences, tequila can only be made from the blue agave, and must be from Jalisco province. Most Mezcal comes from Oaxaca province, and mezcal can be made with other agave varieties. Where tequila producers roast the pina in an oven, mezcal is baked in a ground oven, like a hangi or umu in the pacific.
The result is magical. I will be tracking Ilegal Mezcal. check out the webiste, it speaks to a small scale production, a passion for the spirit and its handcrafted nature.
I can’t wait to be able to add a bottle to my liquor cabinet.