The Mezcal Rush by Granville Greene
Explorations in Agave Country

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Finally, Greene asks pointed questions as he ponders “Columbusing” and the schism between the way mezcal is portrayed and its authentic, indigenous roots. A rich, inclusive portrait of one of the world’s great drinks.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

In pursuit of the story behind a beguiling drink, Granville Greene embarks on a journey through remote Mexican highlands to learn about the history, cultures, and traditions surrounding mezcal. In recent years the smoky flavored agave distillate has become a craft cocktail darling, rivaling even its better-known cousin tequila, and it can sell for over $100 a bottle in the U.S.

But unlike most high-end spirits, mezcals are typically produced by and for subsistence farming communities, where distillers have been swept up in a hot new trend in which they have very little voice. Greene visits indigenous villages in Oaxaca and Guerrero states, meeting maestros mezcaleros who create their signature small batch drinks using local plants and artisanal production methods honed through generations of mezcal-making families.

As Greene details the sights, smells, and intoxicating flavors of Mexico, he turns his eye to the broader context of impoverished villages in a changing economic and political landscape. He explores the gold-rush style surge of micro-distilled mezcals as luxury exports, and the consequent overharvesting that threatens the diversity of wild agaves, as he finds the oldest distilled spirit in the Americas at a crossroads.
 

About Granville Greene

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Granville Greene is a graduate of The Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University. He has written for Outside, The New York Times, and many other publications. He lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
 
Published March 27, 2017 by Counterpoint. 256 pages
Genres: Education & Reference, Travel, Cooking, Science & Math, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction
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Kirkus

Above average
on Jan 16 2017

Finally, Greene asks pointed questions as he ponders “Columbusing” and the schism between the way mezcal is portrayed and its authentic, indigenous roots. A rich, inclusive portrait of one of the world’s great drinks.

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