The Taste of Celebration in Gem & Bolt Mezcal

We visit Oaxaca to discover the alchemy behind the brand and its gracious smoky flavor

Gem & Bolt founders Adrin Adrina and Elliott Coon shared a childhood in a community of creators in the mountains of Virginia, where plant medicine was part of everyday customs. Long before their life in Mexico, they made damiana elixirs as a way to “share herbal knowledge through the celebratory door,” says Coon. Both artists and alchemists, the duo wanted to be at the crossroads …

Yola Mezcal

Founded by women who are fighting for fair wages for Oaxacan women

Led by three women—Yola Jimenez, Gina Correll Aglietti and Lykke Li—Yola Mezcal offers more than just a clean, balanced taste with that familiar smoky kick (akin to tequila’s more sophisticated, older cousin). It’s dedicated to traditional making methods and not only paying the workers in Mexico a fair wage, but furthermore, Yola’s bottling facility in Oaxaca employs only women—creating more opportunities for economic independence in …

Oaxacan Stonecutter and Dressmaker Tiburcio Sánchez

Exploring the dual crafts of a master maker in light of the city's wild Carnival of Teitipac

by Max La Frenais Maestro Tiburcio Sánchez was born in San Juan Teitipac in 1945 and has been stonecutting metates and molcajetes for the past 55 years. (A metate is a large, carved stone with a curved surface used to grind maize; a molcajete is the Mexican version of a mortar and pestle used to make salsas.) Outside in his yard, the 71-year-old sits on …