Late last month, Brooklyn brunch hotspot Fandi Mata opened a Mezcaleria bar on the second floor of the former industrial space that has since been turned into a biophilic playground, and now mezcal enthusiast. Behind the six-seater bar adorned with plants are 50 different mezcals, making it one of the largest mezcal wallets in New York City.
“Mezcal is one of the most versatile spirits in the world. The trend and need for this particular spirit has overtaken the popularity of tequila in recent years and we all know how much of an impact it has on consumers, ”Milos Zica, partner and director of beverages, told UKTN. Fandi Mata.
Zica brought her experience from her former role at West Village’s nationally acclaimed hangout, Employees Only, to curate the current roster of mezcals. Zica told UKTN: “It took over a decade for mezcal to develop into the spirit it is today. It is still a new category of spirit for many people, but it is growing exponentially as the awareness and knowledge of this divine and delicious spirit is a never-ending journey.
That’s why the team decided to dedicate their second level to educating consumers about the agave-based spirit; whether it’s enjoying a mezcal flight, discovering the versatility of the spirit in a classic cocktail, like a mezcal negroni or an espresso mezcal martini, or experimenting with the bar’s artisan cocktails like Solé, a combination of Milagrito Abogado, St. George’s spiced pear liqueur, Silence tea vermouth, velvet falernum, orange bitters and sherry essence.
“We are the only ones [in New York] wear the Milagrito brand which is a star of Mezcal Bar. All of our specialty cocktails are made with this mezcal, ”Zica explained.
Fandi Mata diners don’t have to worry if they can’t sit at the intimate upstairs bar; they can drink their fair share of mezcal as they sample their way through Fandi Mata’s cocktail list, including brunch bestseller, Sabrosa. Zica explained that this cocktail is a blend of Milagrito Enmascarado 45, homemade pineapple and cinnamon syrup, Ancho Reyes verde, fresh citrus, and Sal de Gusano.
As mezcal continues to be trending in its agave-based category and beyond, Zica reflected on the importance of spirit and the importance of creating a bar and space to enjoy it. “Knowing that it takes at least seven to nine years (sometimes more than 25 years) for the agave to fully develop, coupled with the passion and expertise of Master Mezcaleros put into the mezcal manufacturing process, makes of this type of agave spirit one of the most popular to indulge, ”said Zica, who also advised: “Indulge, educate and enjoy this spirit of agave as it may not be available to all of us in decades to come.
For those unfamiliar with mezcal, but perhaps a fan of the more popular mezcal spirit tequila – remember that all tequila is mezcal but not all mezcal is tequila – Fandi Mata dedicated October to presenting a tequila brunch. The limited-edition brunch is in partnership with premium tequila brand, El Tesoro, and available from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays until October 31. The team shares that there will be an ever-changing lineup of lineup for the main restaurant and mezcal bar, so keep an eye on their social media for the latest deals.