When we first met Chicagoan Lou Bank, he epitomized the “Renaissance man.”
Bank was the marketing and design expert who brought Japanese characters, like Pokemon, out of specialty comic book stores into major toy chains, and he also helped start a lobbying group that eliminated incest-exception laws.
Now, Bank runs a nonprofit that uses traditional and artisanal agave spirits — mezcal — to help people in rural Mexico.
Saving Agave for Culture, Recreation, Education and Development (S.A.C.R.E.D) funds the building of libraries, replanting agave, and maintaining a water reserve in Oaxaca, Mexico. S.A.C.R.E.D. wants to ensure the people most involved in creating traditional agricultural products, like agave spirits, reap the rewards.
Bank is back with Carlos Mendez Blass, maestro for Cruz de Fuego Mezcal in Mexico, to talk about the national mezcal tasting festival, Mezcal: Mexico in a Bottle. Billed as “Chicago’s largest agave spirits festival.” it takes place Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017 at the Chop Shop, located at 2033 W. North Ave.