Juan Abel Quiroz Agustín: Master Mezcalero

Master Mezcalero Juan Abel Quiroz Agustín prefers to go by “Abel”. Born and raised in Santa María Sola where he still resides, Abel saved for years before achieving the dream of building his own palenque next to his house. Santa María Sola is a municipality in the district of Sola de Vega, in the [...]

By |2021-07-05T20:22:06+00:00June 26th, 2021|News|0 Comments

We Are Hiring! Mezcal Sales Superstar Needed.

WE   Are a a mission-driven company.  Our mission at Erstwhile Mezcal: partner with small, independent, family-owned producers and bring their craft to international consumers for the first time. Erstwhile is a boutique importer of agave spirits based in Brooklyn, New York.  We are a young but fast-growing company, with distribution, sales and loyal fans [...]

By |2021-07-25T18:46:09+00:00May 16th, 2021|News|0 Comments

How to Elevate Women in Mezcal, Wine and Spirits | Part I: Sit at the Table

Erstwhile Mezcal’s core values are gender-neutral for the most part: mezcal education, transparency, empowering small producers to grow through export.  That said, women representation in Mezcal and the broader wine & spirits industry pulls equal weight in guiding every action and decision we make as a company. Before diving in, let me first credit the [...]

By |2020-09-26T23:42:07+00:00September 25th, 2020|News|0 Comments

Tantris Sidecar, Erstwhile Edition | A Cocktail Down Memory Lane

It was winter, perhaps 2000 or 2001.  I would sometimes go to Chef Waldy Malouf’s (now defunct) Beacon in the evenings for a burger and a cocktail.  But the real treat was hanging out with the bartender Audrey Saunders. Audrey and I knew each other from the old AOL Online Spirits Boards where, before the [...]

By |2021-07-04T03:40:55+00:00May 27th, 2020|News|0 Comments

Part III | Why Is Mezcal So Dam$ Expensive in the United States?

Welcome to the third installation of Erstwhile Mezcal’s blog series, in which I share my firsthand experiences and takeaways on Why Is Mezcal So Dam$ Expensive in the United States. In Part I of this blog series, I observed that for Erstwhile’s first shipment of mezcals from Oaxaca to the United States, our production costs [...]

By |2021-05-16T20:27:42+00:00May 21st, 2020|News|6 Comments

Chauvinism and Gender Bias in the Mezcal Industry

Recently, I had a disturbing but thought-provoking experience with a discussion thread on Reddit. It occurred to me that the problems underlying my experience are not limited to the mezcal industry, and may manifest themselves in other industries as well. I want to share what happened and how I responded, in case my fellow entrepreneurs [...]

By |2021-07-14T22:33:49+00:00July 22nd, 2019|News|0 Comments

Erstwhile Mezcal’s Online Shop is Live!

Hello, fellow mezcal lovers!  We have some really exciting news to share with you.  You can now order Erstwhile Mezcal online directly from our website, and have your favorite mezcals shipped directly to your front door or to family / friends all over the country! To fully understand why this is such a big deal for us, consider Erstwhile [...]

By |2021-07-11T06:32:16+00:00June 25th, 2019|News|0 Comments

Erstwhile? Velociraptor? Our Name and Logo Explained.

    What is the story behind Erstwhile Mezcal’s logo?  Why is our brand called Erstwhile?  We get asked these questions a lot from folks who are getting to know us for the first time.  I figured it is high time that I write a blog post addressing these excellent questions.   WHAT IS THE [...]

By |2021-06-14T14:50:43+00:00November 25th, 2018|News|0 Comments

Epifania Gómez Mejía & Silverio García Luis: Mezcal Family

Epifania, Silverio and their sons. Photo provided by the Consejo Regulador del Mezcal (CRM).   Mezcal made from Espadín, a cultivated (versus wild) varietal of the agave plant, is by far the most common varietal you are likely to find in your local liquor store, cocktail bars or restaurants. Espadín is the most [...]

By |2021-07-11T06:33:42+00:00August 26th, 2018|News|0 Comments

Hortensia Hernández Martínez & Juan Hernández Méndez: Mezcal Family

  Hortensia Hernández Martínez and Juan Hernández Méndez, circa March 2018, in front of the fermentation vats at their family palenque in Santiago Matatlán, Oaxaca.   At Erstwhile Mezcal, we work with each and every one of our partner mezcaleros with care and passion, committing our brand and reputation only after countless tastings [...]

By |2021-07-05T20:27:36+00:00May 24th, 2018|News|0 Comments

First Artisanal Henequén Mezcal in the US Market

  Erstwhile Mezcal is the first and only importer to launch a certified artisanal Henequén mezcal in the US market. This rare distillation, made from cultivated Henequén piñas, is a small-batch limited edition of only 397 liters (about 500 bottles total). Master mezcalero Juan Hernández Méndez (one of our partner producers based in Santiago Matatlán, Oaxaca) [...]

By |2020-12-31T13:10:27+00:00April 7th, 2018|News|3 Comments

The Earliest Known Map of Oaxaca

La Mas Noble y Leal Ciudad de Oaxaca dividida en Quarteles de orden del Exmo. Señor Marques de Branciforte Virei de esta Nueva España. Erstwhile Mezcal is the passion project of its two co-founders: Yuan Ji and yours sincerely. From its inception, Erstwhile Mezcal has always been inextricably tied to our never-ending love affair with [...]

By |2020-08-06T18:24:32+00:00March 25th, 2018|News|0 Comments

In Memoriam: Juan Hernández Méndez

Juan Hernández Méndez - our friend; Erstwhile Mezcal's partner producer; loving husband and father of four; skilled mezcal artisan from Santiago Matatlán, Oaxaca - passed away on Sunday evening, September 27, 2020. We are drinking Juan's mezcal tonight to remember him.  We hope you are too. Where to begin?  Juan was kind.  Juan was welcoming.  [...]

By |2020-09-29T15:32:21+00:00September 29th, 2020|News|0 Comments

Tantris Sidecar, Erstwhile Edition

https://youtu.be/L-Yq2Ka2WM4 It was winter, perhaps 2000 or 2001.  I would sometimes go to Chef Waldy Malouf's now defunct Beacon in the evenings for a burger and a cocktail.  But the real treat was hanging out with the bartender Audrey Saunders. Audrey and I knew each other from the [...]

By |2020-10-24T19:20:42+00:00May 23rd, 2020|Cocktails, Recipes|0 Comments

How to Pack the Mezcal Oven | Tips from Rey Arellanes Angeles, Santa Catarinas Minas, Oaxaca

Rey Arellanes Angeles, a skilled producer of ancestral mezcal, runs a tight ship in Santa Catarina Minas, Oaxaca. While Erstwhile Mezcal’s current lineup does not feature any mezcal made by Rey, my co-founder Kevin and I are his fans in our personal capacity as mezcal enthusiasts.  We have many of Rey’s distillations in our personal [...]

By |2021-07-11T06:29:19+00:00March 2nd, 2020|News|0 Comments

Part II | Why Is Mezcal So Dam$ Expensive in the United States?

Welcome to the second installation of Erstwhile Mezcal’s blog series, in which I share my firsthand experiences and takeaways on Why Is Mezcal So Dam$ Expensive in the United States. In a previous post, I observed that for Erstwhile’s first shipment of mezcals from Oaxaca to the United States, our production costs account for only [...]

By |2021-07-11T06:34:31+00:00January 18th, 2020|News|2 Comments

Part I | Why Is Mezcal So Dam$ Expensive in the United States?

Ever wonder why some mezcals cost less than $50 per bottle, and others close to $150 and more?  Are the expensive bottles better?  And if so, in what ways? Before entering the mezcal industry, I had these same questions.  That was before my co-founder and I set forth to start Erstwhile Mezcal, an importing company, [...]

By |2021-07-11T06:29:47+00:00December 10th, 2019|News|2 Comments

The Anticuado

[amd-zlrecipe-recipe:6] This cocktail is smooth on the palate with a touch of creaminess, smoke, medicine, and spice. The creaminess can be adjusted by substituting the hard-to-find Bogart's Bitters with more common Angostura. A note on this marvelous glass. This is a stunning late 19th century Venetian art glass coupe designed by [...]

By |2019-12-07T04:08:06+00:00October 9th, 2019|Cocktails, Recipes|0 Comments

Erstwhile Mezcal + BBQ | Sunday Asado at Colonia Verde

Last Sunday (June 16, 2019, which also happened to be Father’s Day), we made our mezcal debut at Colonia Verde’s sold-out Sunday Asado.  Although the event was only three hours long, the turnout, incredible energy and all-around good vibes were free flowing and permeated Colonia’s Verde lovely Brooklyn backyard from the get-go.  We had a [...]

By |2019-06-26T04:31:29+00:00June 26th, 2019|News|0 Comments

Smoky Negroni

[amd-zlrecipe-recipe:3] The Erstwhile Smoky Negroni is a novel reimagining of a classic cocktail, the Negroni. The Negroni was first compounded in 1919 at a legendary Florentine bar, then known as the Café Casoni (now named Giacosa Café). Count Camillo Negroni requested that the bartender, Fosco Scarselli, spike his favorite cocktail, [...]

By |2019-10-11T17:57:11+00:00April 19th, 2019|Cocktails, Recipes|0 Comments

Pilar

[amd-zlrecipe-recipe:2] © Photography: Emily Schiffer | Stylist: Krystle Wilson The Erstwhile Pilar is a spirit-forward cocktail in the Negroni model. Whereas the traditional Negroni uses gin, sweet vermouth, and Campari, we substitute respectively with Erstwhile Espadin, Cocchi Americano, and Cappelletti. We also play with the proportions, upping the mezcal to take [...]

By |2020-09-03T17:26:27+00:00April 18th, 2019|Cocktails, Recipes|0 Comments

La Lonchería + Erstwhile = Best NYC Mezcal Monday

It is our immense pleasure to spotlight and team up with our friends at La Lonchería: New York’s first Mexican lonchería and our beloved neighborhood mezcaleria in the heart of Bushwick, Brooklyn. Imagine a classic Mexican cantina meets modern luncheonette / diner. Serving casual but sublimely delicious food. Understated but undeniably cool in every aesthetic, [...]

By |2019-06-15T20:24:34+00:00January 18th, 2019|News|0 Comments

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