What kind of Agave do you really have on your shelf?
In Mexico we have around 200 different kinds of Agaves.
We know how to extract sugar (alcohol) with 40 different kinds of those agaves (Don’t worry, we are working to find how to extract the “buzz” on the other 160…)
One of each of these 40 Agaves have sub families. In some cases, these sub families have sub-sub families, etc.
Due to the Mezcal boom, a lot of Agaves were moved out of their natural ecosystem to be planted somewhere else. This implantation in a new environment pushes the Agave to transform itself physically to adapt it to the new space.
All these factors, make it very difficult to know exactly what Agave we are working with and have an impact directly on the name of the agave within your beautiful bottle of Mezcal.
The name of the Agave is a marketing choice of the producer and obviously, is based on the Agave(s) used to made that Mezcal.
In the new NOM 070 (to be adopted very soon) the name of the Agave(s) used should be mention on the label. Today, unfortunately, the lack of exact information is the real norm.
To select in what form we will add the name of the Agave on the label, we have 3 choices:
- Indigenous name
- Spanish name
- Scientific name
In this graphic we have one Agave named in three different ways.
This is the Agave Name Game.
Good luck finding how many different Agaves you really have in your spectacular Agave program at your bar.
Let me know if I can help.