Mezcal and Tequila Tips for Bars and Restaurants

To a tequila novice, the strong, agave-derived liquor (sometimes maligned by the nickname “to kill ya”) may stir up connotations of summer evenings made cooler by salt-rimmed margaritas served on ice (or even images of their frozen, slushy counterpart, churned into a glass with a slice of lime). Certainly, yes, this is one good use for the distinct, flavorful liquor – at least for the less aged variety that carries a sting of flavor many can only tolerate with salt and lime. For that matter, tequila’s smokey relative, mezcal, is starting to make the rounds in cocktails these days, too, with varying degrees of success. However, the truth is that a truly good tequila or mezcal is a soothing liquor that warms the body and is perfect – when unadorned by mixers or garnishes – for sipping slowly on a cold winter’s night, in much the same way one might nurse a fine Scotch.

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