Erick Rodriguez is widely known as one of Mexico's most knowledgable and adventerous bottlers of Mezcal. His tiny shop, Almamezcalera, has become famous among the agave cognicenti and his selections are legendary. We're very lucky to have access to this tiny unusual batch of uncertified mezcal (bottled as aguardiente de agave). Maestro Patricio Hernandez cooks the piñas in a stone oven, then mills the cooked agave using a traditional tahona; to ferment, however, around 30% fresh pulque is added to the crushed agave in a pine vat (a 'tina'), almost like a sour mash or kombucha. After eight days, the resulting fermented 'tepache' is distilled twice in a copper pot, using a condenser ('refrescadera') to further rectify the spirit. The flavors are unbelievably complex and offer a stupendous balance.
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