MOORDENAAR’S KAROO OLD FASHIONED
Not blessed with a river or easily accessible source of water, the Moordenaar’s Karoo region is believed to have been so named because of its murderous climate. Drawing its inspiration from the region’s almost gothic disposition and the era of the Mexican Wild West, this cocktail is a homage to bitterness, offset by the natural sweetness of coconut and agave nectar.
Prepare the glass by gently dipping the rim in simple sugar syrup then crushed Kalahari smoked salt.
In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, shake together 90 ml 1800 Tequila Coconut, 1 star anise, 30 ml agave syrup and 45 ml espresso until cool. Pour into the glass over a large, square ice cube. Garnish with coffee infused dried aloe strips and coffee beans. To make the coffee infused dried aloe strips, place thin slices of aloe in agave syrup and add 5 ml instant coffee powder. Place in an airtight container and leave in the fridge overnight. Remove the thinly sliced aloe, dry on paper towel and place on a baking tray. Roast in the oven at 110 °C for 10 minutes.
TEQUILA VS MEZCAL
Most cocktail tequilas are unaged. Aged tequilas are usually delicious on their own. When aged in wood for too long, it loses something of its agave-ness, leaning more towards other wood-aged spirits like whisky. Mezcal, on the other hand, is more the overarching name for agave-based spirits, of which tequila is the most famous, and made around the city of Tequila in Mexico. Tequila, then, is a single-origin agave spirit, whereas Mezcal is more complex. Like a great wine blend is made from a number of grape varietals, Mezcal often uses multiple varietals of agave that are cooked underground for several hours, resulting in the spirit’s characteristic smokiness.