On Sept. 15 a group of friends gathered in a rustic adobe house in Tucson to enjoy a five-course dinner of fine Mexican cuisine prepared by Chef Nadia Aidi of Food My Muse. The intimate group of 15 attendees sat cozily family style, sharing a wooden bench and enjoying each other's company. Accenting the meal were neat pours of Mezcal Carreño courtesy of purveyors Ivan Carreño and Abel Arriaga, as well as specialty mezcal cocktails concocted by mixologist Vadi Erdal of Tucson's Exo Bar.
The pairing dinner featured vinegar marinated mushroom tostadas served with Chiltepin, garlic chips and farm fresh greens; duck confit, cooked to perfection with mole sauce with plantains; and dessert of delicately sweet mazapán ice cream. Chapulines were also served during the course of the meal, which surprised several guests, including one who didn't realize what she was enjoying were roasted grasshoppers until after consuming several handfuls. Goes to show what you can enjoy if you open yourself to new experiences!
While the group enjoyed their meals and sipped their Mezcal Carreño, Ivan shared the history behind the spirit's Ensamble 7 label. The seven wild agave varietal that make up the Ensamble 7 are Tobalá, Tobasiche, Tepeztate, Cuishe, Lumbre, Coyote and Espandí, representative of the seven Carreño sisters (Ivan's Aunts) to create a delicate, yet complex, mezcal tasting experience.
"I am excited and honored to be able to share the Carreño history and values through Mezcal Carreño", says Ivan. "Our mezcal has been a family tradition for more than 100 years and has been a symbol of spending time with those we love. We take 'from our family to yours' to heart!"
To end the night, Vadi prepared a drink called Carajillo Tucsonese, a sensuous cordial of Mezcal Carreño, local espresso and breath of cacao, damiana, cardamom and rose. All in all, the Viva Mexico Pop-up Pairing dinner was a success in introducing Mezcal Carreño and bringing the full Oaxaca experience to more Arizonans. We look forward to expanding our family and creating more Mezcal Moments - won't you join us?