I recently had the pleasure of tasting Ilegal Mezcal Reposado and was blown away.
Have you ever taken the time to taste Mezcal? It’s not just a smokey tequila used in mixed drinks. As a matter of fact, tequila is a mezcal, not the other way around. Don’t feel bad; I didn’t know this either. Just as Scotch and bourbon are whiskey, tequila is a mezcal. The reason is that mezcal is any agave spirit; however, tequila is made from only blue agave.
I have to admit, I am not usually into smokey flavors. My husband always goes for the mezcal cocktail at a restaurant, and I steer clear. Ilegal Mezcal has changed my mind. Unfortunately, I may be disappointed when a restaurant doesn’t have this premium option. Some say Ilegal is the mezcal to serve people who say they don’t like mezcal. It’s that good and unique.
I think what makes it so different is the fact that Ilegal is aged in American Oak barrels for four months. The result is familiar “wood” notes that I am used to enjoying in bourbon. The smoke is there for sure, as expected and desired in a mezcal, but I was impressed with the many layers in this spirit. Honestly, I don’t know a lot about mezcal, and maybe that’s a good thing since it makes me an unbiased taster.
Here are all the notes I found:
The nose: citrus and agave forward, also peppery
The palate: sweet and smokey (even the smoke has a sweetness to it), caramel, orange
The finish: that sweet smoke lasts for a while, in a good way
I’d call this a premium, refined mezcal. I was seriously impressed. Sometimes smoke flavors taste fake or forced to me. This mezcal is subtle and layered.
Check out these beautiful mezcal cocktail recipes from Ilegal. And click HERE for complete cocktail kits!
2 oz Ilegal Mezcal Joven
1 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Agave Nectar
Directions: Add to shaker with ice. Shake. Dump ingredients into a pre-salted rimmed rocks glass.
1.5 oz Ilegal Mezcal Joven
1.5 oz Cucumber Juice
.75 oz Simple Syrup
.5 oz Ancho Reyes
.5 oz Fresh Lime
Build all ingredients in cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously with ice. Strain over fresh ice and garnish with a cucumber sliver.