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Did You Eat The Worm?

There Is No Worm In Tequila!

It never fails. You tell somebody that you drank some tequila, and they ask you if you ate the worm. No, of course you did not- there is no worm in tequila, there never was, and there never will be. There is no such thing as a tequila with a worm in it.

 

The worm is found in some brands of mezcal. Mezcal is a Mexican type of traditional hard liquor, but it's different from tequila. According to some people, tequila is essentially a type of mezcal, not the other way around. That doesn't change the fact, though, that no one ever puts a worm in the tequila. The worm is only found in some brands of mezcal from the Oaxaca area.

The urban legend I was told when I first had mezcal was that it was made from a psychotropic cactus, chemically similar to mescaline- thus the name. The worm supposedly absorbed a lot of the mescaline, so if you ate it you would trip for days.

 

The reality is that mezcal has nothing to do with mescaline. It's made from a type of agave plant called the maguey, which sometimes gets infested with moth larvae. When this happens, it results in second-rate mezcal, so the presence of a moth larva in the mezcal is almost the exact opposite of a mark of quality.

 

If you drink the mezcal and eat the worm, you are not consuming liquid mescaline and then chewing on a psychoactive larva. All you are doing is drinking some booze and eating a maggot. Sorry, frat boys, but those are the facts.