About Ilegal Mezcal Joven
An unaged handcrafted artisanal mezcal, Ilegal Mezcal Joven is a uniquely flavorful mezcal. It begins with roasting the piñas in underground ovens in small batches, chopping them into smaller pieces and finally crushing them to a mash by a tahona, a stone mill drawn by a horse. The mash is then fermented by airborne yeasts – no yeast is added – before it is distilled in 250-liter copper pot stills. Ilegal Mezcal Joven greets with eucalyptus and mineral aromas on the nose while the palate brings an intriguing and complex balance of green apple, fresh citrus, and red chiltepe. Expect a long, slightly smoky, and sweet finish. Bottled at 80 proof, Ilegal Mezcal Joven is a non-chill filtered expression that is adored by both mezcal aficionados and newcomers to the world of mezcal.
Desperate for a good agave-based spirit to stock at his bar (Café No Se) in Antigua, John Rexer began smuggling artisanal mezcal from Mexico to Guatemala using banditos, river rafts, bribes, disguises, and late night drop points. As word spread about Rexer's illegal mezcal, travelers and tourists, journalists and photographers and lawyers and businessmen began patronizing Rexer's bar and smuggling the mezcal from Guatemala back to the United States. Simply put, Ilegal Mezcal began as an illegal pursuit to stock Café No Se with some of the finest spirits being distilled in Mexico.
Today, the journey of Ilegal Mezcal, one of the leading artisanal mezcals in the world, begins in the agave fields of Matatlan, Mexico. There, it’s produced at Mal de Amor by Maestros Mezcaleros Armando and Alvaro Hernandez and at Los Javis by Maestro Mezcalero Javier Mateo.
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Mezcal is a distilled spirit made from roasted agave plants between two days and two weeks, which gives it a distinct smokey flavor.
What scotch is for whisk(e)y, mezcal is for tequila.
It can be made from different types of agave in different parts of Mexico, but most of it (60%) comes from the state of Oaxaca. Mezcal offers a large diversity of flavor profiles and ranges between 40 and 55% ABV.
Check out our impressive selection of mezcals, and find your new favorite in the Top 10 mezcal & tequilas, or explore The best gifts for mezcal and tequila drinkers.