Off Topic Chatter (Drinks, Travel, Photos, Anything Goes)

MReda

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I've been getting into mezcal quite a bit after never quite getting hooked on whisky/scotch - what a rabbit hole! I think it's worth looking into, though the price points are certainly a bit higher for a variety of reasons. The spectrum of flavors is quite broad compared to what I've seen in other spirits.
Provide some recommendations and I'll look into it!
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godfodder0901

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Provide some recommendations and I'll look into it!
This is one of my favorites...
Mezcal Joven | Online Store | Ilegal Mezcal

And this is the cocktail they served at the first NYC event...

Love Your Neighbor
1.5oz Ilegal Mezcal Joven
.5oz Fresh Grapefruit Juice
.5oz Fresh Lime
4oz Tonic
Build over fresh ice in a highball glass and stir. Salt half the rim and garnish with a grapefruit slice.
Signature Ilegal Mezcal Cocktail by Team Ilegal
 
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kanundrum

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This is one of my favorites...
Mezcal Joven | Online Store | Ilegal Mezcal

And this is the cocktail they served at the first NYC event...

Love Your Neighbor
1.5oz Ilegal Mezcal Joven
.5oz Fresh Grapefruit Juice
.5oz Fresh Lime
4oz Tonic
Build over fresh ice in a highball glass and stir. Salt half the rim and garnish with a grapefruit slice.
Signature Ilegal Mezcal Cocktail by Team Ilegal
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MReda

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This is one of my favorites...
Mezcal Joven | Online Store | Ilegal Mezcal

And this is the cocktail they served at the first NYC event...

Love Your Neighbor
1.5oz Ilegal Mezcal Joven
.5oz Fresh Grapefruit Juice
.5oz Fresh Lime
4oz Tonic
Build over fresh ice in a highball glass and stir. Salt half the rim and garnish with a grapefruit slice.
Signature Ilegal Mezcal Cocktail by Team Ilegal
Thanks, I'll keep an eye out for it.
 

DuckTruck

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Provide some recommendations and I'll look into it!
Mike,

After writing the info below and coming back to this thread this evening, l realize you were asking about Mezcal. Regardless, I hope someone finds my meanderings about Scotch helpful.
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One thought before you go out and buy anything, and that would be to see if a favorite bar might have flights of samplers you might be able to try. A familiar bartender may allow something similar to help you sort through many, many offerings out there. Even if you drop a hundred for the experience, you avoid buying something you end up hating.

I've learned that the blended varieties like Johnnie Walker Red or Black Labels and Chivas Regal tends to be where most people start. They are generally smooth, but you'll certainly want to try out Single Malts from the various regions of production. The two largest of the five regions are the Highlands and the Lowlands.

The Lowlands, in my opinion, are the lightest and smoothest of the bunch. That is not meant to mean light in any negative way, they are just silky smooth, in my opinion. Kanundrum mentioned the Auchentoshan distillery, specifically their Three Wood. You will be a happy man with that, or the 12 Year Old. Also Glenkinchie's 12 Year Old is great. I know folks who say that Lowland Whisky is great before a meal because it is so smooth. Personally, I think you'd be wise to avoid that practice around breakfast, but who am I to judge?

The Highland makes up at least two-thirds of the country, including the islands to the North and the West. As you might guess, Highland Whisky is pretty diverse. Some are smooth, some, like many of the coastals are a little salty. I like anything from Dalwhinnie and Glenmorangie. Oban is nice, but it's been a while.

Speyside is tucked into the Northeastern coastal part of the country and has a different way of doing things. You're more likely to catch hints of spice and fruit. They also age a bunch of their product in Wine or Sherry barrels for a different finish. The big names from Speyside are some of the best known Scotches out there. Glenfiddich, The Glenlivet, Macallan, Aberlour and Balvenie are all great Single Malts. I'm a fan of jumping past the youngest offering from pretty much any distillery, regardless of the region. The extra age is generally always better, and not that much more in cost.

Islay and Campbeltown are neighbors in the far Southwest of the country, with Islay being an island that thrives on the Scotch business. in fact, pretty much all they do on Islay is make the smoky tasting signature that you either love or hate. As I joked earlier, the many Ardbeg varieties taste and smell like a campfire while the Lagavulins, Laphroaigs, and Bunnahabhains are more like roaring wildfires. Watch out, because they all have a pronounced bite.

Campbeltowns can also be a little smoky, but nearly like the Islays. They are pretty full and rich, maybe with a saltiness to them. Like Islay, it's size means fewer distillers with Springbank being the oldest and biggest. I need to try them out again. I know I've had a taste years ago, but since finding Islay Whisky, I tend to drink little else. I love the peaty punch all of their stuff throws. That's just me. Your tastebuds may still function.

I hope that helps. Remember, all of these will tend to be lacking the sweeter notes you might be familiar with when drinking Bourbon and, to a lesser degree, Rye. This is Whisky, not Whiskey. Because ice wasn't (still isn't) a thing there, try them all neat (room temp, right from the bottle) or over one big cube. I prefer to float a very small amount of water or Club Soda in it to open up the flavor a bit. Lest I sound like a lush, I can nurse one neat drink for quite awhile (that's why I avoid ice) as I prefer to sip and enjoy it as much as I can. Also, being of Scottish ancestry, I'm cheap.

Keep us posted as to what you try and like.

Slàinte Mhath!
 
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opnwide

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Will never buy a Land Rover again!!!
I’m more of a Four Seasons type of of camper, but for those future Rivian RAN network adventures around Yellowstone, Yellowstone under Canvas is a great “Glamping” adventure for the family and those who’s wives may pack high heels. Had a memorable time there...Gweneth Paltrow recommends as well...www.undercanvas.com

B00A0066-0E2D-4E5C-861A-97EACFD3E28C.jpeg
 
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kanundrum

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I’m more of a Four Seasons type of of camper, but for those future Rivian RAN network adventures around Yellowstone, Yellowstone under Canvas is a great “Glamping” adventure for the family and those who’s wives may pack high heels. Had a memorable time there...Gweneth Paltrow recommends as well...www.undercanvas.com

B00A0066-0E2D-4E5C-861A-97EACFD3E28C.jpeg

Visited lake powell and horse shoe bend, just a great little area!
 

DuckTruck

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I’m more of a Four Seasons type of of camper, but for those future Rivian RAN network adventures around Yellowstone, Yellowstone under Canvas is a great “Glamping” adventure for the family and those who’s wives may pack high heels. Had a memorable time there...Gweneth Paltrow recommends as well...www.undercanvas.com

B00A0066-0E2D-4E5C-861A-97EACFD3E28C.jpeg
Wow! That looks really nice, in spite of Gwyneth's recommendation. If you happened to snap a pic of her as she was trying to persuade a Grizzly Bear into going vegan, would you please upload it for our viewing pleasure? Bonus points if she was in high heels!
 

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So last year we were suppose to plan our across country trip with the pickup of our R1S SUV how ever Covid became and thing and it was clear once Rivian announced we were not going to have our vehicle so we decided to do our trip anyways. We did stop by the factory and made our pilgrimage outside and played some ball with the dog haha.

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We rented a 28Foot Class C from outdoorsy for 2 months and drove about 11,000 miles visiting a lot of Major National Parks. I think we did about 25 of them total. I now know way too much information about driving and maintaining a RV as well as National Parks with dogs. It was an amazing trip! For those interested in chatting here is my Album (All pictures were taken with a special cell phone called a Sony Xperia 1 Mark II).

https://flic.kr/s/aHsmUCHdcL

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I have done similar trip covering midwest and the west and pretty much same places as you did. Definitely the most memorable experience. Pics are awesome 😍
 

discsinthesky

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Provide some recommendations and I'll look into it!
For an entry into sipping mezcal, this is what most would recommend, and certainly what sent me down the hole. https://www.mezcalreviews.com/mezcal/del-maguey-chichicapa/

Another one that I've loved recently is: https://www.mezcalreviews.com/mezcal/del-maguey-san-pablo-ameyaltepec/

So a bit (from my limited knowledge) about what mezcal different from some other spirits is that there are dozens of species of agave that are used for making mezcal, many which aren't easily cultivated. "Single-agave" expressions are currently popular, but traditionally blends were more common. Tequila is a regional designation, and can only use one type of agave, mezcal refers to the entire spectrum of agave spirits.

I suspect this extra variable of agave species and all the terroir implications, plus varying fermentation, distillation, and aging processes, all play a roll in how much flavor variety I've experienced in the space. But perhaps I just never went deep enough with Whisky/Scotch, I'm certainly spending more money on bottles than I did exploring whisky. Probably my best point of comparison is experiencing a flight of nice mezcals at home compared to whisky flights I've had at many restaurants - it's a pretty stark difference to me.

Hope you enjoy the ride!
 
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