Finding Mezcal

A journey into the liquid soul of Mexico, with 40 cocktails

Published by Penguin Randomhouse.

ISBN:
9780399579004
4 stars (1 review)

In 1990, artist Ron Cooper was collaborating with craftspeople in Oaxaca, Mexico, when he found mezcal—or, as he likes to say, mezcal found him. This traditional spirit was virtually unknown in the United States at the time, and Cooper founded Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal in order to import it. Finding Mezcal recounts Cooper’s love affair with the spirit and the people who make it; its meteoric rise in popularity; and the delicate balance between sharing mezcal with the world and facilitating its preservation. Each chapter introduces a new mezcal, its producer, and its place of origin, while also covering mezcal production methods and the botany of the maguey (aka agave) plant, from which mezcal is distilled. Featuring 40 recipes developed for Del Maguey by chefs and bartenders from around the world, the book is copiously illustrated with photographs, as well as Cooper’s artwork and that of his friend Ken …

70s LA + commercialization of mezcal

4 stars

LA art world in the 70s -> life crisis -> drinking mezcal in small towns in Oaxaca -> growing del maguey mezcal. a brand promo book for sure, but I also learned a lot about mezcal production and some about small town Mexico across the years. plus has a real LA / artist freewheeling memoir feel that I'm a sucker for