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A bottle of QuiQuiRiQui

QuiQuiRiQui mezcal review


Try mezcal in place of tequila in cocktails, or enjoy it neat. We taste tested QuiQuiRiQui, one mezcal available in UK supermarkets. How did we rate it?

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QuiQuiRiQui mezcal - 45% ABV

Overall rating: 4/5

In a nutshell: An affordable mezcal that’s widely available and pairs well with food. The aroma and flavour profiles include buttery, floral and chardonnay notes.

Full review of QuiQuiRiQui mezcal

You can’t judge a book by its cover, and you can’t judge a mezcal by its label. It’s easy to be sceptical of a mezcal called QuiQuiRiQui (pronounced Kee Kee Ree Kee), which is the Mexican equivalent of Cock-a-Doodle-Do.

QuiQuiRiQui was launched in 2012, and was the first mezcal to be available in the UK. The woman responsible was Melanie Symonds, a former TV producer, who opened a mezcal bar in Hackney after visiting Oaxaca, Mexico in 2011. Symonds discovered how hard it was to find affordable mezcal in the UK, so she decided to produce her own and import it. She got in touch with some people she’d met in Oaxaca – the Mendes Blas family from the town of Santiago Matatlan (Mexico’s mezcal central) – and they now distil QuiQuiRiQui for her, an unaged 100% espadin mezcal.

The nose is creamy and buttery, like a really rich chardonnay, but add vanilla sweetness, floral scents, lemon, and a hint of smoke to that and you get a light and flowery freshness. Those notes all come through on the palate, though the alcohol (45%) is more powerful. It smells and tastes like a mezcal that’s good for sipping, and would pair well with appetisers, like chorizo or salsa with tortilla chips.

Recommended serving

You can substitute mezcal in most cocktail recipes that use tequila – we recommend a margarita for QuiQuiRiQui.

Read our full review of mezcals


This review was last updated in July 2019. If you have any questions or suggestions for future reviews, or spot anything that has changed in price or availability, please get in touch at For information on alcohol guidelines, read our guide to drinking responsibly.

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