By: Jessica Hubble | LCA’s Digital Marketing Specialist
Who knew Las Colinas would be the perfect place to dip your toes in the water of the world of mezcal? Las Colinas is home to both Mesa Mezcal (located in the Westin Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas Hotel) at 400 West Las Colinas Blvd and Texican Court which has two spots to sip mezcal; their Tequila Bar and Two Mules Cantina which is located at 501 West Las Colinas Blvd. All spots offer mezcal flights, mezcal based cocktails, and have eager mixologists ready to teach you all about Mezcal.
I started my adventure at Mesa Mezcal where Ali Oquendo, their bartender, taught me the history of and proper way to enjoy the “Moonshine of Mexico”. Mezcal is meant for sipping, not shooting like its counterpart, tequila. Mezcal is sipped with worm salt which is a blend of sea salt, a variety of roasted chilis, and citrus fruit. Lime, lemon, or orange are all appropriate accompaniments for mezcal, but orange is the traditional companion to the Mexican liquor. To get the full flavor profile of mezcal breath in through your nose, take a sip, then release the breath through your mouth. Dip your citrus of choice in the worm salt, and then take a bite of the citrus.
For my mezcal flight, I chose “The Agave Flight”. This flight features Ilegal Mezcal Vago Elote, La Venenosa Red Raicilla, and Hacienda de Chihuahua Sotol Platiunum. Raicilla and Sotol are both craft mezcals, which means that they are made in small, specialty batches. Raicilla is distilled in the Mexican state of Jalisco and for years was sold without government sanction or approval. It has only recently been picked up by distillers and made legally. Sotol is made from the dessert spoon plant. The desert spoon plant is native to the arid environment in northern and southwest Mexico. This spikey plant is a member of the asparagus family of plants which are called asparagaceae. The dessert spoon takes 15 years to mature and only yields one bottle of sotol per plant, it’s very exclusive. Ilegal Mezcal Vago Elote is made with roasted corn along with the agave plant.
My favorite was the Hacienda de Chihuahua Sotol platinum because it had a very smooth finish, delicate smoky flavor with notes of lemon and pepper. This spirit is unique because it is triple distilled in a double column copper still which is what gives the liquor a smooth finish. Champagne yeast is used to naturally ferment this sotol. It’s also interesting to note Hacienda de Chihuahua Sotol started a conservation program to prevent over harvesting of the desert spoon plant.
If you prefer a cocktail over a sipper, Mesa Mezcal offers many mezcal cocktails. I recommend starting with the Bruijita. Bruijita means “little witch” in Spanish. This “witchy” cocktail has Sombra mezcal, pineapple syrup, lemon juice, and habanero orange bitters. The Brujita is not overpoweringly sweet and has a balanced smoky flavor that pairs perfectly with a sunny day on the patio.
The next stop in my mezcal journey was Texican Court’s tequila bar, where I was able to create my own flight. I ordered Del Maguey Crema, Alipus San Andres, Montelobos Espadin, Ilegal Mezcal Vago Espadin. They arrived in small ceramic glazed cups with sliced oranges and sea salt.
Del Maguey Crema was my favorite by far! It is sweetened with agave syrup and has notes of almond, pineapple, and a unique smoky, orange finish. This mezcal is perfect to sip by itself or to use in cocktails.
Around the corner from the Tequila Bar is Texican Court’s restaurant Two Mules Cantina. They have a refreshing twist on Sangria that is made with Desert Door sotol, red wine, and cranberry juice. This drink has the perfect smokiness of sotol mixed with the sweetness of sangria for a refreshing fall sipper. You will want to pair this with their queso flameado or freshly made “michi” ceviche.
Whether you are well versed in mezcal or you’re wanting to try it out Texican Court’s tequila bar and Two Mules Cantina or Westin Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas Hotel’s Mesa Mezcal are the perfect places to dive right in.