Thursday, June 8, 2017

Mex 1 ups their tequila game, brings in new culinary director

More sips than shots

Posted by Connelly Hardaway on Thu, Jun 8, 2017 at 1:44 PM

click to enlarge Chef Ryan Jones takes over as Mex 1's culinary director. - PROVIDED
  • Provided
  • Chef Ryan Jones takes over as Mex 1's culinary director.
click to enlarge The Baja Tanga is made with tequila AND rose. - PROVIDED
  • Provided
  • The Baja Tanga is made with tequila AND rose.
Do you know how tequila is made? We didn't — that is, not until Mex 1's beverage director Morgan Hurley told us all about tequila production last night. In honor of Mex 1's special new tequila — Mex 1 Herradura Double Reposado — Hurley took us through the special process that starts in Amatitán, Jalisco, Mexico (where he and Mex 1's owners recently traveled) and ends in a barrel of Herradura tequila specially crafted for Mex 1.

Mex 1's Herradura batch has notes of agave, caramel, vanilla, and a touch of spice — and is, as Hurley convinced us, a beverage that can be consumed slowly, like a good bourbon. You can snag a bottle for yourself at Bottles for $49.

Last night Hurley whipped up the Baja Tanga (pssst: he tells us this creation may make its way to City Paper's Margarita Festival) with Mex 1 Herradura Double Reposado, watermelon puree, rosé, fresh lime juice, and agave nectar.

We also got a taste of what's to come at both Mex 1 locations — food by new culinary director Chef Ryan Jones, who comes to Charleston after a stint as co-owner of Connecticut's The Mill at 2t, which he'd founded with his wife, Kelleanne. 

Hurley says that as a "coastal cantina" Mex 1 wants to expand upon their current food offerings. We tried bites like firecracker shrimp, Caroline blue crab and avocado tostadas, mini tuna tacos with quick kim chi, and beef barbacoa empanitas with chipotle crema.

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