Un Festival de Agave in Melbourne!

September sees a perfect storm for the agave curious and those already converts to agave spirits; mezcal, raicilla – and the most famous/infamous – tequila, among them.

We are in the midst of Mezcal Week right now (8-15th Sep), then comes Mexican Independence Day (16th Sep), that date toasting to the start of International Paloma Appreciation Week (16th-22nd Sep).

The resurgence of rum is said to be the next big thing in Australian spirits but don’t overlook tequila and its ilk. Australia’s first locally-grown blue agave crop (the only stuff made into what’s allowed to be called tequila, when its from Tequila the location) harvest has just happened. NSW distillery Black Snake has recently released the first Australian-grown and made agave spirit; a mezcal-like drop they have dubbed ASp. And partially Australian-owned Tromba has been flying the flag for years. 

Don’t let the fact that celebrities – like George Clooney, The Rock, Jennifer Hawkins, P. Diddy and possibly even The Backstreet Boys in future – have released their own tequilas put you off. If you happily sip whiskey or rum or gin, yet say you don’t like tequila, you simply haven’t explored enough of it yet! Here’s how to celebrate all things agave this month. 


Mezcal Week

Hotel Jesus / 8-15th Sep / Hotel Jesus have created a limited release dish and a drink – both mezcal soused – exclusively for this week only.

Mamasita / 8-15th Sep/ Mamasita is celebrating Mezcal Week in a few different ways. All week long there’s a six-course, agave-spiked banquet with mezcal matches on the side. They’re doing a five round mezcal cocktail flight if you have no need for food to get in the way of your celebrations. And come 3pm on Mexican Independence Day, Luis Herrera is hosting a free mezcal tasting.


This year the Tromba-led initiative International Paloma Appreciation Week is aiming to raise $25,000 for Water Charity’s “Filters for Life” project. It combats water-borne diseases by providing critical water filters for people around the world – IPAW will target affected rural areas around Guadalajara specifically. Tromba will match all donations dollar for dollar. Take you friend out for some grapefruit-y goodness. A full list of week-long venue participants – like Mesa Verde – will be revealed  on Monday 16th September, but a sneak peek at some special Paloma Week events around Melbourne can be found below.

Taquito / Wednesday 18th Sep /  Tickets available soon for the annual multi-course, Paloma-inspired IPAW Dinner. It’s matched with cocktails naturally.

Peaches / Thursday 19th Sep / Settle in for a night of five different takes on the Paloma.

Stomping Ground / Friday 20th Sep 4-7pm / A collaborative beer, the Paloma Gose (Grapefruit Gose with Tequila), is back. Enjoy a bar shout and beverage chats with the Tromba and Stomping Ground teams.

Hotel Jesus / Saturday 21st Sep 12-3pm /  A Mexican brunch with Tromba tequila and tacos (that’s the best kind of brunch).

Mya Tiger at The Espy / Sunday 22nd Sep 12-3pm / Finish the week with a long brunch/lunch over Palomas. 


The Attic at Black Pearl / Thursday 12th Sep, 7pm / Tromba are launching their new still strength 55% ABV Blanco Tequila, ‘Cinco Cinco’ with a curated list of cocktails for one night only.

Radio Mexico / Friday 13th Sep, 6-8pm / Agaveria debuts their events by matching five chocolates with five mezcals or tequilas.

Casa de Vinos / Friday 13th Sep,7pm / Casa de Vinos turns into Casa de Agave for one night only with tequila and mezcal tastings and specials. 

Mesa Verde / Saturday 14th Sep, 2-5pm / An afternoon of tequila boilermakers pairing Tromba up with Modus Operandi Brewery (and tacos).

Taquito / Sunday 16th Sep, 12pm /  Viva Mexico is a celebration of Mexican independence and the independent spirit. They”ll serve up a traditional Sunday roast lamb barbacoa-style alongside Mexican spirit tastings and cocktails. There’s also the option to try the spirits, including tequila and mezcal, on their own.

Know about another agave event? Let me know: sarah@drinkmelbourne.com.au.

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