Chichicapa is a small village a couple of hours south of Oaxaca, according to Del Maguey’s website. It’s strange since Google Maps doesn’t really pick up on it but does show a Chichicapa north of Oaxaca in the Tabasco.
Anyway, this is a mezcal that I got recommended by my buddy BC, and was hugely positively reviewed by Ralfy in his ‘South American’ spirits series a while ago. I believe it got some 93 points.
The environment where these agaves were grown is desert like and is separated from the rest of the Oaxaca area by a mountain range. A deep valley is where the climate is suitable for mango and banana production.
The nose is light and gentle with less smoke than the Vida. It’s rather fruity and green with clear hints of agave, orange and lime. Also I’m getting vanilla, but something meaty too. Like Dutch liver sausage, strangely. It’s rather light on the spicy too, I think I’m getting dill. Quite warming.
The palate is as gentle as the nose, and crisp too. The smoke is very, very light and gentle with pepper, peppercorns, and that plant like flavor again, which must be the agave in a different way. It’s almost wood like in this case. Some vanilla and cactus.
The finish is much heavier on the agave than before, but still not as clear and strong as tequila. There’s pepper but it still is rather silky. Long, gentle and creamy, with more smoke towards the end too.
I can see why this mezcal is very award winning and came highly recommended. I absolutely love this stuff and the combination of lots of light flavors makes this the Mexican equivalent of a young Rosebank whisky or so. Of course, that doesn’t make any sense, since the flavors don’t match, and there’s smoke.
What I mean to say is that compared to some other, heavier spirits, this is much more crisp, light and delicate than I expected. Strangely, others thought this more heavy than I did, but in the end that doesn’t really matter. It’s gorgeous. Really, really gorgeous. I’m seriously considering stocking up on this for future use.
Keep in mind that prices vary per country. Quite vast, actually. In The Netherlands this stuff costs about € 70, while the UK shops charge about the same in pounds. At current, rather crappy, exchange rates that makes it about 35% more expensive in England.