About Blanco Mezcal

About Blanco Mezcal
Blanco mezcal is a spirit from Mexico that can be made from as many as 18 different types of the agave plant, some cultivated and some wild. Most are produced in the Mexican state of Oaxaca. A blanco mezcal is distilled in a copper still (sometimes double distilled) and is not aged in oak, thus preserving a clear appearance.

Mezcal is often confused with tequila, as both are made from agave. But while tequila must be made from one specific blue agave, mezcal can be produced from eighteen different types of agave (maguey). There are two types of mezcal, those made exclusively from maguey and those made from at least 80% maguey mixed with other ingredients. Mezcal has similar aging terms as tequila, such as reposado and añejo, but generally mezcal is more of an artisanal product, so examples of mezcal vary more than tequila.

Most are double-distilled, while some are triple-distilled and then aged for several years in oak barrels. Flavors range from smoked herbs and pepper to tobacco and charred fruits. Serve these on their own, in an adventuresome cocktail, or with a cigar.

Top Picks for Blanco Mezcal

Don Amado Arroqueno Mezcal
94 points
$89.99
Clear color. Herbal, spicy aromas and flavors of caramelized smoked bacon, bbq rub, smoked sea salt con gusano, and fancy pipe tobacco with a lightly tannic, lively, bittersweet medium-to-full body and a warming, very long charred ham and pineapple, pickled tropical fruits, and white cigar ash finish. A wonderfully complex and smoky mezcal with great savory spiciness.
Awards: 2017 Best Mezcal, 2017 Best Blanco Mezcal
94 points $89.99
Xicala Mezcal
94 points
$39.99
Clear color. Tropical, complex aromas and flavors of grilled pineapple,peppers, and sweet potatoes, spiced chestnut honey, smoked peppercorns and herbs, and sweaty hard cheese rind with a supple, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, engaging, medium-long campfire embers, lit tobacco, volcanic rocks, and smoked venison jerky finish. A vibrant, flavorful mezcal.
94 points $39.99
Iba 55 Mezcal
94 points
$100
Clear color. Smoky, fruity floral aromas and flavors of tobacco ash, nopales, char-roasted pepper, and copper with a supple, lively, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, intricate, smoked nuts, honey roasted exotic tropical fruits, vanilla bean, and tar finish. A fantastically rich, fruity, and nuanced blanco mezcal.
Se Busca Mezcal Joven
93 points
Clear color. Smoky, savory, complex aromas and flavors of char-roasted peppers stone fruit, and pineapples, smoked peppercorns, and roasted garlic nopales and gherkins with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a peppery, complex, very long smoked nuts, creme Anglaise with grilled plantain and tropical fruits, white cigar ash, and white pepper and herbs finish. A smooth sipping mezcal with supple balance and a long finish; this will be very versatile as a sipper or cocktail component and will be a good introduction to the category.
Don Amado Largo Mezcal
93 points
$89.99
Clear color. Aromas and flavors of green plantain, barbecue pork, and eucalyptus with a round, fruity light-to-medium body and a peppery, interesting, medium-long pear drop, wintergreen, hot smoked tomato, and black pepper and allspice finish. A complex mezcal with oscillating fruitiness and jerk-like spiciness.
93 points $89.99
Mezcales de Leyenda Oaxaca Mezcal
93 points
$60
Clear color. Delicate, tropical, savory baked exotic aromas of singed praline, pressed linen, roasted tropical fruits, and raw peat moss with a silky, lively, off-dry medium body and an effortless, complex, long toasted raisin bran finish. A wonderfully smooth and elegant mezcal for all applications.
Viejo Indecente Mezcal Espadin
93 points
$60
Clear color. Rich, funky aromas of hot pickle, rubber cement, grilled pineapple and aloe, and lemon verbena with a creamy, racy, fruity medium body and a tingling, layered, long charcoal, smoked cinnamon, cream, and smoked flowers and paprika finish. A great balance of earthy smoke and spice in a very rustic and traditional style.
Mina Real Blanco Mezcal
92 points
$34.99
Clear color. Vegetal, yeasty aromas and flavors of marinated grilled beets, caramelized leeks and pearl onions, smoked olives, and clay with a satiny, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, complex, sweet potato with balsamic, roasted coconut meat, corn pudding, and cacao nibs finish. A delightfully flavorful and balanced blanco with great interplay of fruit and vegetable flavors.
92 points $34.99
Don Amado Rústico Mezcal
92 points
$44.99
Clear color. Sourish, toasty aromas of cigarette butts and ash, charred chestnuts and aloe, and beef bouillon cubes with a supple, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, honey roasted peppers and creamy nougat finish. A smoky, earthy mezcal with a creamy center.
92 points $44.99
Gracias a Dios Mezcal Espadin Joven
92 points
$38
Clear color. Bold, smoky aromas of white cigar ash and char-grilled tropical fruits and peppers with a satiny, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, nuanced, medium-length cream, fuel, and smoky minerals finish. A nicely smoky, elegant and fruity mezcal.