Tasting Notes for Alipus San Andres Mezcal
Aroma: A big push on agave with intensely floral scents tingling in the background.
Taste: Fruity agave which goes hand in hand with mesquite smoke and a pinch of salt.
Finish: Complex and rich from the beginning to the end.
The Alipus label is dedicated to finding and distributing traditionally made small village mezcal from family run distilleries. The recipes used have been passed down through the generations, and the love and knowledge that each family infuses in their mezcal keeps the traditions alive for future generations. There are several expressions of Alipus mezcal and the idea was to create a map of Oaxacan mezcals showing how the conditions where each is produced differentiates the final product, with distinct soils, waters and climates having a singular influence on the land where each mezcal is grown.
San Andrés Mezcal is produced in Miahuatlán, Oaxaca by Don Valente García Juárez and his children. Distilled from 90% agave Espadín and 10% agave Bicuishe, grown at an altitude of 1550 to 1700 meters above sea level, in immature, sandy soils, rich in nutrients by way of rivers heavy with sediment descending the mountain. The agave is harvested in the traditional manner by Jimadores and is roasted in a stone lined food fired roasting pit. Fermentation is done in 1500L pine vats using wild yeast and the resulting liquid is double distilled using copper pots. All bottling and labelling is done by hand at the distillery.
Winner of Tequila.net's 'Best of the Best' Judge Favourite award for Joven (young or unaged) mezcals in 2012.
Alipús Mezcal originated in 1999 as a social impact project by Distilería Los Danzantes, that sought to support traditional family producers. Each version of Alipus is a unique expression born from the soul of the land, connecting us to the families which have been keeping traditional recipes and production methods alive through the generations. Through the Alipus project, these family producers are now able to offer their particular elixir for the delightful enjoyment of the world.
There are hundreds of small palenques in Oaxaca reached only on dirt roads. Small artisanal distilleries preserve – uncorrupted – the traditional centuries-old ways of distilling mezcal. Often the makers of these fabulous Mezcals are unable to navigate the bureaucracy necessary to sell their spirits abroad. Master Distillers Hector Vasquez and later Karina Abad Rojas from Distilería Los Danzantes have worked closely with selected small producers, both to improve their distillation methods and to help them with the complex paperwork required to certify their Mezcals for export.
Today they work with nine mezcal producers in Oaxaca, all of which contribute to the development of rural economies. These family distilleries are very old-fashioned operations. Some still lack stone mills, and crush the roasted agaves by hand, using long-handled wooden mallets, in canoas, hollowed out logs; others distil in potstills made from clay. The process is slow and labour-intensive, tied into the agave itself, tied into the pueblo where the mezcal is distilled, tied into local and regional methods handed down for generations.
Producer Don Valente Ángel García and children family palenque in Miahuatlán, Oaxaca Style 90% maguey Espadín and 10% maguey Bicuishe Joven Mezcal Volume 75cl ABV 47%