NETA Espadín 51.5% – Sozimo Jarquín Aquino

NETA flask from Agave Mixtape #5

After sampling a few past Agave Mixtape boxes I finally subscribed and this was my first box. A variety of espadín from various producers. This box highlighted the diversity of the agave showcasing it’s not just an entry-level species.

This specific bottle is a single distillation from a refrescadera style still (Diagram from Mal Bien). The cylinder surrounding the top of the still is filled with water allowing vapor to cool and fall back into the boiler effectively distilling twice in one pass. Notably, the Jarquín-Aquino family rejected newer methods of distilling in favor of more traditional hand mashing and distilling. As the family only distills once a year, it’s quite a treat to be able to sample a small portion of this year’s harvest.

Nosing this mezcal I get a lot of creamy cultured butter and lemongrass. It has a real savory smell with some deep earthy flavors. I get a bit of wet hay even. Some sesame oil and a tinge of oyster sauce rounding out the salinity and savory notes.

On the palate there is this big burst of citrus oils. Lots of roasted peppers and sweet onions. Maybe a hint of artichoke in there. Slight wood ash. Savory buttery flavors and textures. Garlic and mushroom with that earthy notes I got on the nose.

Vegetal and earthy warming finish. Slight butterscotch sweetness with some dry herb flavor remaining on the tongue. Bit of bitter citrus pith brings some balance to a very enjoyable finish.

Overall this is not the average espadín by any stretch. It’s a really wonderful lactic and vegetal combo. Very fun and unique spirit.