What is the difference between Raicilla, Tequila and Mezcal?
More aromatic than tequila and without the characteristic smokiness of mezcal, raicilla stands out for its floral and fruity nuances. But the flavor comes down mainly to the terroir.
Historically one could say that RAICILLA is the grandfather of Tequila and the rebellious cousin of Mezcal due to its close proximity.
But what is really the difference between these agave distillates?
It is mainly due to the following aspects:
- RAW MATERIAL : RAICILLA with its 5 precious species (Agave maximiliana, angustifolia, inequidens, valenciana and rodacantha), MEZCAL with these 9 species (Agave angustifolia, cupreata, potatorum, americana, duranguensis, inequidens, salmiana, karwinsky, rodacanta, etc.) among others, and finally TEQUILA with its only species of Blue agave (Tequilana Wever).
- PRODUCTION PROCESS: Although Raicilla is very similar to MEZCAL , there are small differences between the type of baking and the type of distillation used. As for TEQUILA , unfortunately due to its high demand, more than 95% is already concentrated in an industrialized process, that is to say, with autoclave ovens and many other systems that make its production more efficient.
- GEOGRAPHIC TERRITORY: The RAICILLA with its 16 municipalities in the state of Jalisco and one in Nayarit, the MEZCAL in Zacatecas, Durango, Guerrero, Michoacán, San Luis Potosí, Guanajuato, Tamaulipas and Oaxaca. And TEQUILA 30 municipalities in Michoacán, 8 municipalities in Nayarit, 11 municipalities in Tamaulipas and 7 municipalities in Guanajuato.
- AROMA AND FLAVOR: The distinction between the dry raicillas of the coast and the sweeter ones of the mountains is a perfect example. "It's a totally different flavor," he says. "There's no point of comparison between RAICILLA, el MEZCAL y el TEQUILA“.
RAICILLA grows under pine trees and therefore acquires a sort of piney, fresh flavors, and simply has an inherently botanical profile.
Raicilla: it is a kind of mezcal, obtained from the distillate obtained from different types of agave, it is a colorless liquid, although its color can vary when it is matured in wooden containers, or when it is poured without maturing it, 100% agave.
Mezcal: is the beverage for which the production process does not matter if the plant is maguey or agave, but the cooking is rustic (stone wells, masonry ovens); the grinding is with a mallet, tahona, in a trapiche or with a machine with tearing blades.
Tequila: is a spirit produced in a small region of Mexico. It is produced from the distillation of the fermented must obtained from the heart of a plant known as “agave azul“. This heart of the plant, similar to a gigantic pineapple, is also called “mezcal“.