Ron Cooper, Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal's founder, and Chef José Andrés and his team at
ThinkFoodGroup, are happy to announce
Del Maguey Ibérico, a unique mezcal made with Ibérico de Bellota ham, the legendary ham made of free-range, acorn-fed, black-footed Ibérico pigs from Spain.
This expression of Del Maguey has a spicy floral nose of carnation, tropical aromatics of gardenia and jasmine, ripe pear, dark fig, notes of wet green hay and forest floor. It enters the mouth like a caramel, and is round, soft and gentle, full-bodied, with a big middle palate. The long finish tastes of roasted root vegetables and umami, leaving the mouth with terracotta, a slate-like minerality and a touch of salinity.
The collaboration process between Cooper and Andres began over a year ago when Andres' Research and Development team, led by Chef Ruben García, came to visit the Del Maguey distillery in Santa Catarina Minas, in the state of Oaxaca. It is here where they witnessed the making of the
Pechuga mezcal, a procedure that includes distilling the spirit three times and incorporating wild mountain fruits, almonds, white rice and a whole chicken breast (pechuga) resulting in a crystal clear liquid of amazing taste and smoothness.
The limited release of 36 bottles will make its debut at the Tequila and Mezcal Festival on March 10 at José Andrés' renowned Mexican restaurant Oyamel in Washington DC. José André's team will become the first establishment in the U.S. to acquire the initial six cases of the spirit. These initial six cases are, in fact, what was produced on the successful first-test run (out of an initial production of 66 bottles, the remaining being held by, and for, Del Maguey's Spirit Library.) Beginning in April, Del Maguey Ibérico will be available for purchase at top retailers and at the SRP $200.
"I have always been fond of Mexican culture and cuisine and have valued the craftsmanship of a fine mezcal, a spirit that has been become quite popular among beverage and food enthusiasts alike. My team and I wanted to somehow connect this enthusiasm not only with Spain and its history with Mexico, but also with the dining experiences of people while being able to bring a high quality product that is very unique and also very authentic. I knew my friend Ron Cooper and his team were going to be able to implement this vision we had," says José Andrés.
The idea of introducing an Ibérico ham in-lieu of the Pechuga was suggested to Ron and his team and a couple of months later Ruben shipped a leg of Ibérico ham to Del Maguey to begin the testing of this new blend of mezcal. The result was a wonderful marriage of flavors and aromas and an innovative expression of pure mezcal.
"Our Iberico exemplifies Del Maguey's mission to continue to innovate, and create new experiences through our expressions. We've always been dedicated to mezcal culture and we innovate within that ethos. We are expanding the mezcal experience," says Ron Cooper.
Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal has been producing exceptional liquid since 1995 and has been dedicated to preserving the traditional mezcal culture, which is steeped in history.