About Blanco Mezcal

Serve in a Copita
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
220146
Don Amado
Arroqueno Mezcal
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.
94 points $89.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
217641
Xicala
Mezcal
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
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
215755
Iba
55 Mezcal
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.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207305
El Rey Zapoteco
Mezcal Joven
Clear color. Exotic aromas of grilled pineapples, pepper and olives, goat’s milk cheese, and singed herbs with a supple, fruity medium-to-full body and a hot, nuanced, medium-long, dried tropical fruit, peppery spice, and white cigar ash finish. A vibrant and succulent mezcal with tons of fresh agave personality.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220147
Don Amado
Largo Mezcal
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
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
211588
Mezcales de Leyenda
Oaxaca Mezcal
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.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
211584
Viejo Indecente
Mezcal Espadin
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.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
215799
Mina Real
Blanco Mezcal
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
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
215800
Don Amado
Rústico Mezcal
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
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
211148
Gracias a Dios
Mezcal Espadin Joven
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.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab