Espiritu Lauro is a Mexican company that was created in January 2010 with the goal of producing the best mezcal in Mexico. Located in San Agustin Amatengo, Oaxaca, they control every single step of the process. Unlike tequila, mezcal can be made from many types of agave: for the Las Hormigas, they use 100% espadín agave. The distinctive flavor of their mezcal comes from an authentic and traditional handcrafted process: - the agaves are grown (cultivated and wild) and after 6 to 8 years are cut by hand and transported to a palenque (production house). - the agaves are hand shredded with machetes and cooked in earth ovens. - the mashing process is done by using an animal traction mill wheel (known as “Egyptian mill” or “Tahona Chilena”). The mill wheel is composed by a big wheel (about 1,102 lbs) attached to an axis and moved by and animal (normally a donkey, horse or mule). - the mash is placed in wooden barrels and left to ferment for five to seven days (depending on the temperature). - the distillation process is done in copper stills. - the mezcal is aged in American oak barrels and bottled by hand. Mezcal Joven is produced from 6-7 year old agave espadin, this is an artisanal single distilled Mezcal with no artificial additives or flavorings. At 40%, it has a fresh acidity and a nice balance of roasted agave and smokiness. The finish is clean and light on the the palate with hints of jalapeño spice. Enjoy neat or mixed in cocktails.