Héctor Vasquez of Los Danzantes talking about field tests at small family mezcal distilleries comparing stone-mill mezcals to ones using shredders, with an interesting sidelight about the social impact of shredders.
Agronomist Luis Mendez, who works out of Sola de Vega, explains that when a stone mill is used to crush roast agaves, the crushing is uneven, leaves larger pieces of the solids, and preserves all the liquids.
Yeasts like nooks and crannies to inhabit, and they like the sugars in the liquids, so the fermentation is longer and more complete, yielding richer and more complex distillations. He says that pulping by hand with mallets in a canoa is even better.
This in comparison to mechanical shredders, what most industrial tequila producers use.
Shredding loses a lot of liquid, so the shredder is adding water, diluting what ends up in the still. Tequila producers also remove the agave solids before distilling. These are two of the reasons that good artisan mezcal is richer and more complex than 99% of present-day tequilas.
Stone mill at Santa Ana del Rio. Yeasts like the non-uniformity of stone crushing : the fermentation is more complete and the mezcal is richer.
The stone mill at Alipús Santa Ana del Río. Yeasts like the non-uniformity of stone crushing: the fermentation is more complete and the mezcal is richer.
Perfectly Roasted Agaves at Distilería Los Danzantes
Ansley discussing the end of an agave roasting at Destilería Los Danzantes.
Here is Ansley describing an general overview of mezcal production. This particular clip was filmed at Alipús’s Santa Ana del Rio location.
A great story about the Hoga still at Danzantes distillery ended up in Oaxaca. For the next few weeks we will be posting a series of new videos from a recent trip down to Oaxaca. Very Informational. Stay tuned.
Devin Cain cleans the antique cognac still after every Low Gap whiskey run.
Cellar work: comments about aging in very small oak casks