One of the great surprises at the 74th Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America Convention was Sierra Norte, a new brand of whiskey from Oaxaca. Oaxaca, of course, is known for mezcal, but one particular producer and importer of the agave spirit has decided to make use of the Mexican state’s abundant corn crop and produce a line of whiskeys—a rarity in those parts. Caballeros, Inc. is best known for Scorpion mezcal (featured in my first book, The Year of Drinking Adventurously) and now it’s marketing a line of whiskeys made from yellow, white and black corn. I caught up with Caballeros, Inc.’s Barbara Sweetman who detailed the creation of master distiller Douglas French.
I just got back from a few days in Oaxaca touring mezcal distilleries and learning more than I ever thought there was to know about agave. Special thanks to Pro Mexico and Mezcales de Oaxaca for setting the whole thing up. And for more on mezcal, check out Week 18 in The Year of Drinking Adventurously.