Ok, not to be egotistical or anything but honestly we thought we had one of the best agave world April Fool’s Day jokes, what with this little diddy from two years ago. But oh no, those pranksters over at Casamigos/Diageo skooled us on how to do some serious punk’d up shit and pity that poor writer over at Forbes that fell for it hook line and sinker.
It all started a couple of weeks ago when word slipped out that George Clooney and Casamigos partner in crime Rande Gerber were coming for mezcal. I mean, that is some serious long term planning for an April Fool’s Day joke. Fast forward two weeks to Forbe’s reporter Karla Alindahao and her “scoop” about the release of Casamigos Mezcal – and how she had a chance to try it. We can only imagine the “embargoed” press release and promise of exclusive she received from the good folks over at Diageo. How could any spirits reporter pass up an opportunity to taste, well, her words really get to the heart of the matter.
The mezcal, which is a joven (meaning it’s young), is uncannily smooth for an unaged spirit. The first thing one notices is the lack of burn and overpowering bitter or smoky notes—both in the nose and on the palate. Instead, you get fragrant herbal (mint, oregano, and thyme) and fruit (tamarind and mango) notes: a fine mix of layered flavors and aromas, if you will. Next, you’ll notice how subtle it is at first sip—especially for a mezcal, which in my experience can be a little more “abrasive.” It is definitely the kind of mezcal you sip for pleasure because of its unusually long finish, preferably using a traditional clay copita—the way God intended.
She also dives into the process by which it is made, explaining “Then the agave is crushed, ton by ton, via a horse–pulled tahona (volcanic stone) wheel. And take note: not every tequila or mezcal is crushed using this method. A tahona wheel, of course. Horse pulled, not so much.”
She even gets in a quote from Gerber, whose over the top patronizing tone was clearly lost on the earnest Alindahao. “While initially tasting different tequilas and mezcals, we were given many samples to try,” Gerber explains. “When we found our mezcal of choice, we worked closely with [the family] to perfect it.”
But of course who wouldn’t be blinded by the suaveness of Gerber as to miss the cues that this was one very sly and clever prank? Honestly you almost had us as well until we got to this part:
Post distillation, it takes 30 days for the mezcal to stabilize and for the Casamigos team to add mountain spring water. Then it’s good to go—but not without Clooney and Gerber tasting each and every single batch themselves: “Our involvement remains the same,” Gerber says of the Diageo deal. “Nothing has changed. We love what we do and it’s all we drink. It’s business as usual.”