Mezcal Old Fashioned


Recipe: Mezcal Old Fashioned (serves one)

  • 1 oz. silver mezcal (we used Xicaru)
  • 1 oz. reposado tequila (we used Clase Azul)
  • 1 tsp agave syrup
  • 1 dash (1/8 tsp) orange bitters
  • 1 dash (1/8 tsp) spiced chocolate bitters
  • Slice of lemon peel

Fill cocktail shaker with ice, add liquid ingredients, and stir until chilled. Strain into ice-filled Old Fashioned glass. Garnish with lemon peel.

This drink takes the Old Fashioned in an entirely agave-based direction, with tequila and mezcal instead of whiskey and agave syrup instead of sugar. We discovered it right down the street at Davenport’s Restaurant in Encino. Our re-creation is influenced by recipes we found online for Philip Ward’s Oaxaca Old Fashioned, which calls for a 1:3 ratio of mezcal to tequila and a flamed orange peel as garnish. We didn’t attempt the flaming bit, but we amped up the smokiness by using a higher mezcal-tequila ratio.

An interesting thing about this recipe is that it uses both an aged spirit and an unaged one. The reposado (literally, “rested”) tequila gives the cocktail richness and body. For the mezcal, we use a silver or joven (young) variety to get more pronounced smoke and agave flavors.

Wondering exactly what the difference is between mezcal and tequila? See our mezcal margarita post.

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