Neta Agave Spirits Tepextate Hermogenes Vasquez 750ml
Tepextate is a type of Agave marmorata that grows throughout many different regions of
Oaxaca. The plant’s historical use in spirits was limited to remote and isolated regions of
difficult terrain, where the production of mezcal was clandestine, and in situations where
palenqueros did not have the land and resources to cultivate other varietals preferred for
their higher yield. In the past, Tepextate was often used as medicine, with different
desired properties derived from both the roots and the juices of its thick leaves.
It is one of the lowest-yielding varietals used in the production of agave spirits. Even
ideal conditions require 30 to 90 kgs of cooked plant to yield just one liter of spirit. In
comparison, a liter of Espadín, or other karwinskii varietals, will require somewhere
between 6-10kg of roasted agave.
It is in arid environments with steep slopes and rugged, rocky and limestone-rich soils
where the Tepextate maguey thrives. Amongst palenqueros, the plant is infamous for its
extremely low sugar content and the difficulty involved in harvesting and transporting
these plants from their preferred terrain of rocky hillside, steep ravines, and cliffs. These
areas are most often inaccessible to trucks or even donkeys or mules and must be carried
out by hand - leaving behind itchy rashes and blisters caused by its highly caustic juices.
The name itself comes from Tepetate, a Hispanicized word originating from the Nahuatl
tepetlatl, which refers to a geological horizon, a lime-rich but hardened and poor
draining earth surface.
In Miahuatlán, Tepextate is sometimes found at lower elevations but is more prevalent in
zones just below 1400m to just above 2000m. It is often found growing alongside various
aromatic herbs and plants, such as verbena, copal trees, and wild chiles.
We selected this batch of 100% pure Tepextate for Neta based largely on the intensity of
the aromas and flavors that are highly representative of the region and very special
qualities of the plant.