Born in Oaxaca in 1964, journalist and writer Ulises Torrentera is today one of the most respected Mezcal connoisseurs in the world. (He probably fell in a Mezcal cauldron as a baby, like Obelix…)
Ulises is a writer who wrote more than 5 books about Mezcal. He is a journalist and Mezcal specialist. He is also behind famous Mezcal quotes:
- “Si , depués de beber un sorbo de mezcal, buscas desesperadamente borrar su sabor con limón y sal…..estás buscando el amor en el lugar equivocado”.
- If after drinking a sip of Mezcal you are desperately looking to hide its flavor with lime and salt…You are looking for love in the wrong place
- “Los caminos del mezcal están plagados de desamor…”
- The Mezcal ways are full of disappointments…
- “Hoy te vi y todo ese amor, se borró con la primera copa de Tepextate”.
- Today I saw you, and all this love disappeared with the first cup of Tepextate.
Ulises is behind his bar each night with a friendly smile pouring Mezcal and answer questions from tourists and several Mezcal lovers, who visit him from all around the globe. More than one hundred choices of Mezcales and distilled Agave decorating his shelves like a monument in honor of Mayahuel, Goodness of Agave. Ulises gets this very rare spirits directly from the Master distillers, paying them always the fair price. In doing this he is honoring the hard work of those who produce this spirit. In doing this Ulises encourages them to keep producing Mezcal for the pleasure of our senses.
Dealing with Mezcal “apasionados” is not an easy thing, and dealing with them in a bar is even harder. México and the US have very different currents of thoughts about the politics and other complexities around Agave. Ulises, like a good “torero”, is always attentive to these matters and his opinions are always pointing to the direction to the benefits of Agave.
To drink a veladora (Mezcal glass) with Ulises is an unforgettable experience. He will tell you all about what you drink; the Agave, the process, the Master distiller and other anecdotes about what you are bringing into your system. Not many people in this industry deserve the name of “Maestro” like he does.
I’m very grateful that he has accepted my invitation to come to America to help with what I consider the principal challenge for the Mezcal in US; education!
With the “Art of the Mezcal”, Ulises and Wahaka bring the education in US to the next level. NW Mezcalogists* bartenders, will get access to the Mezcal secrets from the most knowledgeable Mezcal person on the planet.
What I expect in the future, is that all the protagonists in this Mezcal adventure in the US, direct some of their energy and resources to keep educating people about Mezcal. It is possible to keep working, promoting your brand and educating at the same time. Everybody has to understand, that with more brands on the shelves, we will get better results in a near future. A bar with one Mezcal bottle in a corner, full of dust, is the worst thing that can happen to the Mezcal Artisanal industry.
I really appreciate that Wahaka, for the last 4 years, has kept participating in educational projects all around US, both bringing ultra special Agave distills, Ancestral and Artisanal Mezcales, and also, bringing people like Erick Alma Mezcalera and Ulises Torrentera to keep educating about Mezcal regardless of the brand.
Welcome to America Ulises