THE MIRROR MARGARITA AT COCKTAILS IN THE CITY
Hacha, The Mirror Margarita and Cocktails In The City
Peanut Butter M&M's, Beef Monster Munch and anchovy stuffed olives are just some of the flavour enhancers you might be served alongside delicious tequilas and mezcals at Hacha, one of the industry’s most innovative and highly regarded Agaverias.
In 2023 Hacha will be showcasing their multiple award-winning Mirror Margarita at Cocktails In The City Summer Series in partnership with The Lost Explorer Mezcal. We caught up with Deano Moncreiffe to find out more.
What exciting news happened this week?
Sainsbury's has announced they will roll out the Mirror Margarita across the country later this year. We are the first cocktail bar to achieve a national listing for a signature cocktail so it's a big thing and we are really proud.
What was the inspiration for the Mirror Margarita?
Prior to opening Hacha, I had been the global agave ambassador for Diageo including time on Don Julio and Casamigos so I'd tried thousands of margaritas across the globe and wanted to create a truly stand-out variation.
It took about 6 months to perfect the recipe and its crystal clear appearance really differentiates the drink and was awarded London's best cocktail by Time Out when we opened Hacha in May 2019.
You have chosen to pop-up at Cocktails In The City with The Lost Explorer Mezcal, why?
I'm proud to say I'm also the European Ambassador for The Lost Explorer Mezcal. I felt we had a lot of similar values around sustainability, the education of people on agave and wanting to be disruptive within our businesses.
I took the role alongside the running of Hacha as I knew it would keep me active and engaged within the industry, it's easy as a bar owner to get stuck inside your own venue as there is always something to fix, update etc and you could easily never leave :)
And what is The Lost Explorer Mezcal?
It is a range of three artisanal Mezcals, Espadín, Tobalá and Salmiana, which highlight the diversity of the agave plant and the effect of terroir. I'm also really proud to say that in its first year of launch in 2021, The Lost Explorer Mezcal quickly became the world's most-awarded mezcal.
We have an Espadin which is the most commonly available in Mezcal, the aim was for the flavour of the agave to be the dominant flavour and not lost by smoke. It has green notes, sweet smoke, and notes of apple and is well-rounded.
The Tobala is perfect for Espresso Martinis, deeper flavours, heavier smoke, cacao, cinnamon and caramelised butter.
The Salmiana tastes very fresh, herbal a light hint of spice and light smoke, very agave forward rather than alcohol.
Each bottle has been designed to educate the consumer as much as possible including the average age of the agave and tasting notes. More importantly, we worked with Mexican designers and suppliers to create a bespoke bottle made from more than 50% recycled crystal scraps. The bottles are then hand-labelled and finished with a stopper made of natural certified wood, before being sealed and stamped with biodegradable natural beeswax from Mexico.
We also try to be as sustainable as possible, whether it's replanting at least 3 agaves for every plant used, upcycling our agave waste from the production process or giving back to Oaxacan communities.
We're always thinking about how to push beyond conventional thinking to have a sustainable impact on the planet.
Having been in the tequila industry for so long what changes have you seen?
I can see the changing consumer perception of agave spirits every day at Hacha. Commonly people are brought to the bar by a friend saying they didn't think they liked tequila or mezcal but now they were interested to try it because it's been recommended to them by a friend.
When I started in the industry you were lucky to get through the front doors of a tequila distillery, a lot of them are now opening visitor centres. People are really interested in the category, I love seeing the bar full of people enjoying our tasting flights of agave.
Mezcal in particular has a certain fairytale quality as it has connotations of small batch, small producers, and artisanal craft.
And finally can you recommend any cocktails with The Lost Explorer Mezcal?
Agave spirits work in almost all classic cocktails, the Mezcal Negroni is very popular and simple to recreate at home and the Paloma is a delicious and refreshing drink that works well with Tequila and Mezcal.
At the bar we try to serve classic agave cocktails but in a modern way. A good example is the Tequila Sunrise, we serve it with champagne, orange blossom water, Blanco tequila and a grenadine powder.