74-year-old Tio Pedro first began working at palenques in his hometown of Santa Catarina Minas when he was twenty years old – over 50 years ago. At the ripe young age of 62, Pedro was able to finally build his own small distillery, La Esperanza, in his backyard. His small underground oven can fit about three tons of agave, although he often roasts much less. Tio Pedro’s nephew Lalo and his extended family help him mash the roasted agave with wooden mallets, where they then ferment in pine tanks with water from a local well.
Tio Pedro maintains the centuries-old tradition of Santa Catarina Minas: clay pot stills made in Santa María Atzompa. The clay pots lend a fuller body and mineral texture to his spirits, which oftentimes possess a distinct ripe banana sweetness and notes of cocoa powder and honey. Big, bold, sweet, fruity. Clay and banana shines here with rich creamy dark chocolate and dates. The pallet comes though with sweet mango and papaya, caramelised fig, wet stone, smoked salts and root vegetables. - Agave Lux