All the events
of Baja California Sur

Blog

         

Meet the Spirits of Mexico

On March 3rd, you will have the opportunity to savor selected handcrafted spirits of Mexico paired with delicious regional food in the charming old mining town of El Triunfo. If you haven’t reserved your space yet, click on this link to get your ticket online now! Space is limited.

What are the Spirits of Mexico?

We have all heard about tequila, and most people know about Mezcal, but have you ever heard about Sotol, Bacanora and Raicilla? These are the spirits of Mexico.

Mezcal

Maguey (Agave), one of the most sacred plants in ancient Mexico, is to Mexico what grapes are to Mediterranean countries: the source of countless alcoholics beverages and distilled spirits.

From the heart of the maguey plant, Pre-Hispanics collected a sweet sap, believed to be the blood of Mayahuel, the goddess of the maguey. The sap was fermented to produce a milk-colored, somewhat viscous liquid with a light foam, pulque, from Nahuatl iztāc octli [ˈistaːk ˈokt͡ɬi] (white pulque). Pulque is still produced and consumed in popular districts of Mexico City and rural areas.

The Spaniards introduced distillation and then came mezcal. Mezcals (from náhuatl mexcalli, 'cooked maguey', metl 'maguey' and ixcalli 'cooked') are any agave-based distilled spirit, and therefore tequila, Sotol, Bacanora and Raicilla are all mezcals.

Spirits sold under the name Mezcal are produced in 9 specific regions of Mexico:  Oaxaca, Durango, Guanajuato, Guerrero, San Luis Potosi, Tamaulipas, Zacatecas, Michoacan, and Puebla.  Most mezcals are made in Oaxaca.

Handcrafted artisanal mezcal follows the process that has been used for hundreds of years.

The pinas are cooked in an underground, cone shaped earthen pit lined with volcanic rock.  A fire is started at the bottom, heating the volcanic rocks to extreme heat.  The pinas are then piled into the pit and covered with earth. The heat cooks and caramelizes the pina over several days, giving mezcal its characteristic smokey flavor.

The cooked pinas are crushed with a stone mill (a tahona) pulled by a horse or a mule to extract the juices that are then fermented and distilled.Mezcals can be aged just like tequilas.


Tequila

Tequila is by far the leading Mexican spirit, with global name recognition. It is the 5th best selling spirit in the world (behind Whiskey, Vodka, Cognac and Rum), the fastest growing too.

Tequila is distilled from the blue agave plant, primarily in the area surrounding the city of Tequila, near Guadalajara, Jalisco. Tequila can only be produced in the state of Jalisco and few municipalities in the states of Guanajuato, Michoacán, Nayarit, and Tamaulipas.

The Jimador harvest the mature plants (6 to 10 years old) and shear off the leave with a coa, a long-handled stick with a sharp, flat blade to prepare the “pina”. The pina is then cooked in autoclaves, which converts carbohydrates into fermentable sugars.

The cooked piñas are crushed to separate the fiber from the juices, the “aguamiel,” or “miel de agave”. The aguamiel is then fermented for 7 to 12 days before double or triple distillation to produce the “Tequila Blanco”.

Tequila may be aged in oak barrels to produce “Tequila Reposado” at 2 to 12 months, Tequila Añejo” at 1 to 3 years, and “Tequila Extra Añejo” over 3 years. Aging gives color and flavor to the tequila, adding notes of oak, vanilla or whiskey.


Sotol

Sotol is the distilled spirit made from Dasylirion wheeleri, an agave commonly known as Desert Spoon or, in Spanish, sotol. It is the state drink of Chihuahua, Durango and Coahuila and is produced in a manner similar to the more common artisanal mezcals of central Mexico.

The leaves can be eaten like artichokes, and then be used as spoon (hence its name).


Bacanora

Bacanora is a spirit distilled from the Agave Pacifica (or Agave Yaquiana), growing in the municipality of Bacanora, Sonora. Bacanora was illegal until 1992 and retains its bootlegged flavor. It is now legally produced in Bacanora and surrounding municipalities.


Raicilla

Raicilla is another moonshine from South-West Jalisco, produced in a rustic manner similar to mezcal. Raicilla is produced from many different varietals of agave, including Agave angustifolia ("Chico Aguiar" or "Yellow"), Agave maximiliana, Agave inaequidens and Agave rhodacanta. Recently a distiller, La Venenosa, has begun to market a variety of legal brands of raicilla.

 
 

My KPasapp

Sign in with
OR
Email or Cell #
Password
Remember me
No KPasapp account?

Build your web presence

Your own expandable web page with portal-bcs.com: Multilingual, Dynamic, Highly interactive, Mobile-friendly, Social interactivity, Blog, Online chat, Search Engine Optimized