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Coche Comedor’s Smoke & Embers. (Photo credit: Chimene Macnaughton)

Did you get caught up in the mezcal madness? Bought a bottle or two recommended by a friend and then … wasn’t quite sure what to do with it? You can do better. Or, with the help of Honest Man Group beverage director Chimene Macnaughton you can do better.

Mezcal is a spirit that hails mainly from Oaxaca, Mexico — tequila, on the other hand, is born of the state of Jalisco. And while both spirits are based on the fermented heart of agave, the differences in which agave and how they’re made are more distinctions that separate them in both production and taste. Tequila is made using one kind of agave (Blue Weber) that is usually steamed and, by and large, produced in a more industrial, efficient manner in order to sate the thirst of the margarita-loving masses (of which we are a part).

Mezcal, though, is a very particular product, that’s often touted as being the more artisanal cousin to tequila. Instead of just one, it can be made from dozens of different types of agave, each of which has its own distinct personality. Once harvested (by hand) these agave piñon are often roasted in pits dug into the ground (where that smoky aroma and flavor you might attach to the spirit comes from).

So dust off that bottle you’ve been scratching your head over because this lovely sipper of Macnaughton’s was worth the wait.

Smoke and Embers

Prep Time 1 minute
Serves 1 cocktail


  • 2 oz Pelotón de la Muerte mezcal
  • 1/2 oz Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao
  • 3/4 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 oz Ripe fresh presses pineapple juice
  • 1/2 oz agave syrup
  • 6 dashes Bittermans Hellfire Habeñero Shrub


  • In a shaker with ice, combine all ingredients and shake well until very cold, about 10 to 15 seconds.
  • Double strain into a chilled martini glass or coupe rimmed with Oaxacan worm salt. Cheers!

For the agave syrup:

  • Combine 1 cup agave nectar with 1 cup water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.
  • Simmer until slightly thickened. Allow to cool and store in an airtight jar in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

2oz. Dos Hombres Mezcal 

.50oz. Agave sweetener (optional) 

.75oz. Fresh lime juice 

1oz. Cointreau 

Directions: Add all ingredients into a mixing tin with ice. Shake and strain into a large rocks glass. Pick your passion: spicy: rim your glass with salt + chili powder or sweet: rim your glass with sugar + salt