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Eat and learn: Two tastings and dinners focused on mezcal, tequila

Bricia Lopez, co-owner of Guelaguetza, hosts a tasting of rare small-production mezcals with a Oaxacan meal on April 23 at the restaurant.
Bricia Lopez, co-owner of Guelaguetza, hosts a tasting of rare small-production mezcals with a Oaxacan meal on April 23 at the restaurant.
(Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times)

Want to learn more about mezcal and tequila? There are two events coming up that will help you get started.

On April 23, Bricia Lopez is hosting a special tasting seminar called “El Lenguaje del Mezcal” at Guelaguetza in Los Angeles. Erick Rodriguez, an expert on mezcal history and production, will be discussing the making of the seven rare mezcals that are part of Wahaka Mezcal and its sister non-profit Fundación Agaves Silvestres’ “Vino de Mezcal” collection. The profits from these rare mezcals, which can cost hundreds of dollars a bottle, go to save wild agaves. And when they say small production, they mean it. Wahaka and the Fundación produced only 84 bottles of Numero 1 “Vino de Mezcal” from Zoyatla, Puebla, for example.

Rodriguez has been described on the Mezcalistas blog as the “Indiana Jones of mezcal.” Lopez promises that “you’ll be able to not only taste from these limited productions, but feast on a Oaxacan meal provided by me and learn things about mezcal you could only get by traveling to Oaxaca.” The cost is $70. To buy a ticket, click here.

On April 24, David Ravandi of 123 Organic Tequila will be pairing his agave spirits with dishes -- from caviar purveyor Petrossian in West Hollywood. Chef Giselle Wellman has designed a five-course menu around 123 Organic Tequilas bottlings.

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The evening starts with Transmontanus caviar, potato ice cream (!) and buckwheat crisps with Ravandi’s unaged “1” tequila. That’s followed by a Dungeness crab corn soup with “2” tequila and a jicama-smoked trout taco garnished with trout roe paired with a cocktail made with tequila, fresh grapefruit juice, lime, agave and soda water.

Wellman has some fun with the next dish, carnitas a la Bourguignon served with a tequila aged for 18 months in oak. To finish off the meal, she’s making a paleta d’Ananas -- a pineapple iced fruit bar. The cost is $99 per person, not including tax and tip. To reserve a spot, call (310) 271-6300

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Twitter.com/sirenevirbila


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