If you think that you have never had a mescal (or mezcal ) before, you might be surprised to learn that you probably have. Technically speaking, tequila is a specific subset of mescal, much like how bourbon is a specific subset of whiskey in general. The term mescal can refer to any spirit distilled from a mash of agave hearts; subsequently, only blue agave can be used in tequilas, but any of 30 different species of agave can be used to make mescal.
It is this point that drives home the name of Bozal’s Ensemble, a tantalizing spirit distilled from three different types of agave: the cultivated agave Espadin and the wild-harvested agaves Barril and Mexicano. These last two agaves are native to the rugged Pacific-facing landscapes of Guerrero (the home state of Acapulco) and Oaxaca (the home state of, you guessed it, Oaxaca and Salina Cruz). The fusion of these three different types of agave gives it a deep character that is, almost paradoxically, both approachable and complex simultaneously. Think of it like a fine Bordeaux that melds the traits of different grape varietals together to create a rich experience that is as layered as it is enjoyable. This is the sensation of a finely crafted, multi-agave mescal.
On the nose, the Ensemble delivers robust smoke (from roasting the agave hearts before turning them into the mash) with a bit of cinnamon and petrichor, all of which are confirmed on the palate. There is the distinctly earthy-citrus sweetness of the agave playing throughout the palate that closes out with a warm, lingering finish that exhales like a desert evening wind. If you are a whiskey drinker, or particularly a fan of Scotch, then the Ensemble should be high on your list to try out next. If you are looking for a more complex, earthy tequila experience, take the leap to mescals and start here.