The Lost Explorer Mezcal has joined the agave spirits game with the release of three expressions: Espadin, Tobala, and Salmiana.
Co-founded by David de Rothschild and Thor Björgólfsson in collaboration with mezcalero Don Fortino Ramos, the trio of Lost Explorer Mezcals are distilled in San Pablo Huixtepec, Oaxaca by Ramos and his daughter Xitlali. Each agave is hand harvested by jimadores using a centuries old technique and then cooked using local recycled wood in earthen ovens. From there, the agaves are ground, macerated, fermented in open-top wood barrels, and finally double distilled in a copper alembic still. The liquid is then bottled in recycled crystal glass bottles, hand-labeled and sealed using a natural cork and fully biodegradable beeswax.
“Mezcal production is a longstanding source of employment not only for me and my family, but for the entire local community in Oaxaca,” explains Ramos. “Today, we easily see multiple generations contribute in various ways, whether it be working on the farms, production and distillation, administration, harvesting and even packaging. Crafting The Lost Explorer Mezcal has been no exception and our three varietals are a product of multiple hands from multiple families here in Mexico.”
Harvested after eight years in the valleys, the Espadin is described as “A sweet and herbaceous expression, well-balanced with hints of sweet apple, ripe fruits and a mild smoky layer to finish.
The Tobala is harvested after 10 years and is “An earthy expression, with hints of tobacco, cocoa, vanilla and leather, offering a unique balance between wood aromas and umami flavors.”
The Salmiana grows for 12 years before it’s harvested and is “The most herbaceous expression of all, offering a sweet and spicy profile with hints of green chili, grapefruit and fresh agave.”
Sustainability is central to the brand‘s ethos as is the local community and its land. The brand already implements rainwater conservation, uses recycled wood, plants at least three agaves for every agave distilled, uses fertiliser created from agave waste and is installing solar panels to harness energy for power generation and water heating. There are also plans in place to make the Mezcalero a shareholder.
“Brands based on empathy, authenticity, and integrity, with nature at its heart, are the ones that are going to survive,” notes de Rothschild.
“Our mission has always been to create a world-class distillery, making world-class sustainable mezcal that inspires people to live curiously,” says Björgólfsson. “We are proud to be in true partnership with nature, from seed to shelf, setting new standards for the industry today.”
Each Lost Explorer Mezcal comes in at 42% ABV. The Espadin is on sale for £62.50 ($108 USD) per 700ml bottle, the Tobala retails for £109.99 ($143.50 USD) per 700 ml, and the Salmiana is priced at £140 ($183 USD) per 700ml.