lunes, 12 de septiembre de 2016

In the land of pisco... Pisco Gatherings Meeting Doctor Pisco: Part III

Here we share the third and final part of this article that has been separated into three parts. Enjoy!

The Origin of the Pisco Sour
As well as his thesis regarding whether or not Pisco is Peruvian, Angeles Caballero has found at least
five theories that relate to the Pisco Sour. All of these theories are based upon documentation, not tradition.. Perhaps the most “authentic” Pisco sour is that which is made in Pasco, not in Lima.

What is our magic cocktail doing at those incredible heights? When Angeles Caballero did research in order to publish a book about the literature in this area, he discovered that at the beginning of the last century that there was a bar called Morris in Pasco. This bar was owned by the American William Morris, who prepared the first Pisco Sour in Pasco in order to satisfy the demand for the whisky sour made by his countrymen who were working in a mine in Cerro de Pasco. 

Dr. Pisco states that when Morris closed the bar in Pasco and reopened it with the same name along Boza street in the center of Lima, that was when the Pisco Sour was first introduced in the capital. But his income split because one of his barmen also came down from the mountains, but began to work in the Maury Hotel. This information can be corroborated in the literature of Luis Alberto Sanchez, where we can see the “birth certificate” of Pisco Sour in Pasco.

With the same lexicographic technique, Angeles Caballero has set out to demonstrate that the lúcuma and the chirimoya are also Peruvian. At his 75 years of age, he has maintained his investigative passion and his academic perseverance to continue the project of discussing the literary production of all Peru’s departments. His completed works are some 90 books spanning from literature, education, journalism and folk-lore. “The only thing that I am missing is becoming a member of the Academia, but that will never happen because there are too many hoops.” We forgot: Dr. Pisco also has maintained the rebellious spirit of his youth.

Two Anecdotes
“I’m going to tell you two anecdotes: I was invited to dinner when I was dean, and when I got there they told me “This is legitimate Pisco” and they gave me a full glass. “And you, sir, must drink it in front of us.” I had never drunken Pisco before, so I said to myself “Well, I hope the Lord of Luren helps me.” I drank and I felt something, but after eating a salad of lima beans, the effect passed. Time went by and I heard that in Ica there was an institution called the FBI. “Have you heard of it?” they asked me. “Of course!” I responded, “It’s the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”  “NO!” they corrected me, “It’s the Federation of Drunk people of Ica!” (Federacion de Borrachos Iqueños). “And we want to make you a member.” Since I was the “preferred son of Ica” despite being from Ancash. They told me that they were going to do a serious ceremony—like the Masons do—and I would have to drink a large glass. “Oh no,” I told them, “I’d prefer not to be a member. I have to work, be an example, and I am a dean of a university.” I wouldn’t join. Everyone in the group were producers from Ica, from the then high society of Ica.

Written by: Manuel Cadenas Mujica

The Editors

Compartimos con Uds. este artículo que será difundido en 3 entregas, nos pareció muy interesante. Disfrútenlo.

Tertulias Pisqueras Conozcamos al Doctor Pisco - Parte III

Origen del pisco sour
Además de su tesis sobre la peruanidad del pisco, Ángeles Caballero ha recogido al menos cinco teorías acerca del pisco sour, todas en base a documentación, no a tradiciones. Quizás más verosímil sea aquella que coloca su origen en Pasco, no en Lima.
¿Qué hacía por allá el mágico cóctel, en tales alturas increíbles? Cuando investigaba para realizar su libro sobre la literatura de esa zona descubrió que a principios del siglo pasado existió allá un bar Morris, del norteamericano William Morris, quien preparó el primer pisco sour para satisfacer la demanda del whisky sour de sus paisanos trabajadores de la mina de Cerro de Pasco.
El “Doctor Pisco” señala que recién cuando Morris cierra ese bar en Pasco y lo reabre en la calle Boza, en el centro de Lima, con el mismo nombre, se instala el pisco sour en la capital. Pero bifurcado ingreso, puesto que sus barmans en la sierra también “bajaron” y se instalaron nada menos que en el hotel Maury. Este dato se encuentra refrendado, señala, en la Literatura Peruana de Luis Alberto Sánchez, donde por primera vez se da partida de nacimiento al pisco sour en Pasco.
Con la misma técnica eminentemente lexicográfica, Ángeles Caballero ha emprendido la demostración de la peruanidad de la lúcuma y la chirimoya. A sus setenta y cinco años mantiene vivo el ánimo investigador y la perseverancia académica para continuar, además, su proyecto de cubrir la producción literaria de todos los departamentos del Perú. La obra completa de este autor llega ya a los 90 libros, de Literatura, Educación, Periodismo, y Folclor. “Lo único que me falta es que me hagan miembro de la Academia, pero no lo harán nunca porque hay mucha argolla”. Lo olvidábamos: el Doctor Pisco también mantiene intacto el ímpetu rebelde de su juventud.

Dos anécdotas del Doctor Pisco
“Le voy a contar dos anécdotas: me invitaron a una comida, yo ya era rector, y a la entrada me dijeron ‘este es el legítimo pisco’ y me dieron un vaso lleno. ‘Y usted delante de nosotros lo tiene que tomar’. Nunca había tomado pisco, así que me dije: ‘Bueno, que el Señor de Luren me ayudé’. Tomé y sentí algo, pero con una ensalada de pallares pasó el efecto. Pasó el tiempo y supe que en Ica hay una institución a la que llaman el FBI. ‘¿Conoce usted?’ me dijeron. ‘Claro’, respondí, ‘es el Federal Bureau of Investigation’. ‘Noooooooooo’, me corrigieron, ‘¡es la Federación de Borrachos Iqueños!, y queremos hacerlo socio’, porque soy Hijo Predilecto de Ica a pesar de ser ancashino. Me explicaron que iba a haber una ceremonia solemne, tipo masón, y tenía que tomar un vaso así de grande. Ah, no, les dije, prefiero no ser miembro. Tengo que trabajar, dar el ejemplo, soy rector de una universidad. Y me negué. Todos eran productores iqueños, de la sociedad alta iqueña de entonces”.


Escrito por: Manuel Cadenas Mujica

Los Editores

jueves, 4 de agosto de 2016

In the land of Pisco... Pisco Gatherings Meeting Doctor Pisco: Part II

Here we share the second part of a three part article. We found it to be very interesting! Enjoy!
A Linguistic Issue
Dr. Cesar Angeles was not interested in finding out how much  Peruvian firewater was produced in the days of Spanish Colonization, nor did he care if Pisco was ever produced in the city of Pisco. Neither was he interested in whether or not the denomination of origin zone was too large. He did not begin the absurd practice of purchasing different firewaters in order to establish positive qualities, which would always be considered subjective. He reduced the entire debate to a linguistic issue. And certainly in this area there was no possibility of “fixing the result.”

“This is essentially a linguistic, lexicographic issue (not a grape-related issue, notes the author). The Quechua (or Paracas) word ‘pisco’ means ‘little bird.’ In the city of Pisco at that time, there were many birds, and ancient Peruvians, as did many people, named the location based upon its topographic or geographic characteristics. Just like in the city of Lima, the name comes from rimac, which means ‘river that speaks.’ The inhabitants of these areas were potters, and were also called ‘Piscos.’ During colonization, the earthenware jugs were called ‘Piscos’ and since the firewater was stored in these jugs, the firewater became known as Pisco. The word is also a last name: such as Piscoya, Pisconte. It is a sublimely Peruvian word,” he states, summarizing his thesis.

“If the Chancellery or the Peruvian Government has not argued the above, it is because they are ignorant, because they don’t investigate. If they would have presented their argument from this point of view, we would have won the battle ages ago. If they had done so, no one around the world would be allowed to call something Pisco that wasn’t. They should have applied for the designation that firewater from Peruvian grapes is Pisco with proof that the word Pisco is completely Peruvian, not the other way around. The linguistic argument is central, not an accessory. I am a lonely defender of this argument.”

The intellectual “loans” of “the Peruvianness of Pisco” have appeared with these arguments which were very well documented and demonstrated in 1972, published by Nueva Educacion. The publication immediately sold out, and there were new editions published every two years, at least, until today. Today it is edited by Editorial San Marcos, and is part of the triple edition of “The Harvest,”  “The Pisco Dictionary” and the classic “the Peruvianness of Pisco.”

But the “lonely defender of this argument” has not only been very well read by the majority of authors that have later produced works regarding the national firewater, but also—which he demonstrates with justifiable disdain—has been the victim of plagiarism. We are talking about intellectual and literary plagiarism, such as when other writes develop the same ideas, changing just a few words, citing the same primary sources, but without having the tact to mention where they got the information or even giving the respective credit to the researcher and author, in this case, Dr. Pisco, Cesar Angeles Caballero.

“When there are citations, there’s no problem. But when this plagiarism is written by historians who have access to technology and the knowledge of book-writing, and they don’t even have a bibliography, it’s too much. Everyone who plagiarizes me, they hide my book, and they don’t even cite me.” He gives us various examples—from the best known to moderately respected authors. But the reader must understand that when it comes to who these people are, it isn’t even worth it to mention their names.

Written by: Manuel Cadenas Mujica

The editors

miércoles, 25 de mayo de 2016

In the land of Pisco... Pisco Gatherings Meeting Doctor Pisco: Part I

Here we share this article that will be separated into three parts. We found it to be very interesting! Enjoy!

César Ángeles Caballero, the prominent academic who dedicated a great portion of his intellectual work to the research and subsequent demonstration and defense of the “Peruvianness” of the word Pisco.

Whether or not Pisco was Peruvian was never previously discussed. It was simply a given. The tiresome, dry and not very well defined argument about whether or not Pisco is from Peru is a more recent phenomenon. The Chileans argue that if they had not industrialized and exported their firewater in the proportion that they do (and there is no way to negate this), it is posible that we never would have had the least concern about it. It’s a possibility. 

One of the first people, if not the first, to bring out into the open this controversy was Dr. César Ángeles Caballero. In 1972 he published a book regarding the “Peruvianness of Pisco.” However, after its publication, the battles between the two countries regarding the denomination of origin of the firewater did not develop in the areas in which the author postulated. And even today, 34 years later, his original thesis is widely unknown.

Pisco’s Document of National Identity
Although Dr. Cesar Angeles has retired from the academic life, he has not left study and research, his life-long passion. According to the title of this article, one would expect him to be an oenologist, or at least an eminent pisco-drinker. However, we find an academic who finds refuge in a sea of knowledge rather than firewaters, in books, rather than distilled grapes. His location is in a prodigious library, not a distillery.

However, he is the undeniable “Dr. Pisco,” as his knowledge has given us the best resources in order to feel more proud than ever of our “silver elixir.” He has a doctorate in literature and journalism, is the former dean and founding president of the San Luis Gonzaga de Ica National University, where he is president emeritus today. He is not from Ica, as we would expect, but from Ancash. “From Caraz, sweety; perhaps that is why I am diabetic,” he laughs quietly, as if he were laughing on the inside.

What has been Dr. Pisco’s contribution to our national culture? Everything began in 1969, eight years after he visited Ica for the first time, as the dean of the Department of Education. He had proposed research regarding everything that was representative of Ica, and he began with the area’s literature. “I have written about, since that year, Peruvian literature by each department in the country.” While developing his bibliography, he ran into a Chilean magazine “Hechos Mundiales” and he saw inside the magazine a picture of a bottle of Chilean firewater that said “Pisco Valley of Elqui.” He became upset and decided instead to investigate the “Peruvianness” of Pisco.

But his proposal did not follow the paths which had been taken with international organizations in order to defend Peru.  “How can I prove that Pisco is Peruvian? I asked myself. It was very simple; I would demonstrate that the word “Pisco” is a Peruvian word.”

Up until that point, there was no scandal regarding Pisco. As a professor of the course of Investigative Methods (and author of the manual that is used in all universities for many years), one had to state the hypothesis of the case. “Just like the National Document of Identity (DNI) describes you and gives you an identity, the DNI of Peruvian firewater is the word Pisco. Those Peruvians among us that want to fight with Chile are silly. The only thing that we need to do is demonstrate that the word Pisco is, in fact, Peruvian.

Written By: Manuel Cadenas Mujica
Translate by Katrina Heimark
The editors

martes, 17 de mayo de 2016

In the land of Pisco... A Rural Legend

This legend was told to me years ago by workers in one of the Villacuri Country Estates. 

Every year, Jose and Mario, who were neighbors, competed to see who had the best grape harvest in Ica, Peru. Both were very good farmers who passionately and carefully dedicated themselves to their grapevines. But one day in July, Jose found that his grape leaves had been eaten by his donkey, Jacinto. He became so angry that he followed him all around the countryside with a whip in hand.

Meanwhile, Mario watched Jose and said “You’ve forgotten to put a fence around your fields! That is why Jacinto and other animals get in your grapevines. Put a fence up!” Jose nodded, but remained astonished by the disaster that had occurred.

Weeks went by and spring came to the countryside.
Just like he did every day, Jose got to his fields early in the morning and he was amazed! His grapevines had germinated like he had never seen before, and they were full of grapes! He compared his fields with Mario, and despite Jacinto’s efforts, Jose’s fields were splendid! “What had happened?”

Simple! Jacinto the donkey had taught them a secret that had not been revealed until then: The pruning of the grapevine. From then on, this became a very important step in the cultivation of grapes. That year Jose and Mario celebrated the harvest and the discovery with a big party.


Translate by Katrina Heimark

lunes, 18 de abril de 2016

In the land of Pisco... Interview by to Engineer Jason Astete Powell General Manager of Quebranta Export SAC

1.- Jason, tell us. What is “Buena Cosecha?” (Good Harvest)
Well, the foundation of Buena Cosecha is a family business which  is 
dedicated to the production, processing and exporting of various products that are related to agriculture, and applying modern agro-industrial techniques to different points in the process. We are conscious of the great and demanding market that you form a part of. That is why we have brought our efforts together in order to develop and innovate the agro-industrial business; starting from the care of our fruits, as well as good management after the harvest. The point is to offer our principal clients a wide variety of high quality products.
There are close to 1000 hectares of property that some business partners have which is located in the central coast of Peru, in Ica in the Villacuri desert. The special climate there allows for some 2700 hours of light per year, and the purity of the water, extracted from 80 meters of subsoil allows us to obtain the highest quality in all of our products.
If you would like to see Fundo Buena Cosecha, click here.

2.-What factors are involved in a good quality pisco?
They are divided into three parts: the quality of the grape is the principal factor. Which valley it is from, the climate, the light hours which the plants are exposed to on a daily basis, this all allows for a good concentration of degrees brix. This is obtained due to good soil and the optimal management of the crop.
In managing after the harvest, one must consider the factors related to quality regarding the temperature, the quality of the must in order to obtain a good product from the beginning, raw materials and the fermentation process. In order to obtain this, one must have trained personnel.
The materials in which the grapes are stored today are stainless steel, and in our case we no longer use the earthenware jugs known as piscos. The place where the must and the pisco are stored must be fresh and clean.
Buena Cosecha uses stainless steel tanks both for the fermentation of the must as well as the storage for our Pisco.
During distillation the person in charge, based on their knowledge, experience and according to what the market demands at that time, controlls the quality of the Pisco regarding its alcoholic proof. That is why each year the quality of Pisco for each batch is not the same. Nor do we always have the same weather, which is why the grape may not always be the same.

3.-What types of grape do you plant, and what type of Pisco do you produce?
The grape varieties that predominate in Fundo Buena Cosecha are: Quebanta, Italia and Torontel. We produce Pure Pisco from Quebranta grapes, Pisco from Italia grapes, Pisco from Torontel grapes, and a mix of these two or three varieties results in our Pisco Acholado, which is a mix of our Piscos.
Many confuse this mixing or blending as referring to the must, but it is not like that. I believe that the grapes should not be mixed at the beginning of the process, but rather when the Piscos have already been distilled. That way we can see the evolution of each one and know what we are mixing. This allows us to manage the combinations in such a way to achieve a Pisco Acholado of excellent quality.
As Quebranta Export SAC we have three brands of Traditional Pisco from Quebranta grapes, Pisco Italia and Pisco Acholado. The principal center is our Fundo Buena Cosecha, our brand now has four years in the market and we now have all the governmental registrations, such as Indecopi, denomination of origin, etc. 

4.- What does Pisco Special Selection or Premium mean?
When one distills and observes that one lot of Pisco is better than another (it is more evolved than other), it is important to not mix the batch because each is different than the other. One evaluates which is the most complete Pisco, a well-rounded Pisco, and if the concentration of the grapes has been from 8 to 10 kilograms a liter, we call these Piscos: Pisco Special Selection or Premium. Why? There are two parameters that we use to define this. The amount of grapes per liter of Pisco (from 8 to 10 kilograms), if it has more body, more concentration of alcohols and the store of the Pisco. Also because of the time that it is stored (resting). This is an advantage for Pisco, as well as for wine, as it matures as it evolves—the longer it is stored, the better.

5. Why is resting important for the quality of a Pisco?
If the Pisco is well preserved and if the tank is of optimum quality (stainless steel), it shouldn’t have much ventilation because the alcohol can evaporate. Resting achieves a maturation of the Pisco, and since it is derived from grapes, we know that every day it evolves. When the evolution is longer, the Pisco becomes more perfect, as one can perceive more aromas. Thus, it is also a more expensive Pisco.

6.-What is your current production?
Fundo Buena Cosecha has its own facilities. We have 45 hectares of grapes in total—which is equal to some 350,000 kilograms of grapes per year. This year is the first year we will produce 100% of the grapes that we harvest. Generally, in the past, we have sold to third-parties in order to make our crops profitable. The volumes of sales we had were not important enough to justify the production of our entire crop, but since this year we are going to have our own bodega with the latest in technology, it will allow us to produce our 350,000 kilograms. This will result in some 60,000 liters of Pisco, which is our balancing point.

7.-What are your plans for the immediate future?
As Buena Cosecha, we want to position ourselves as the leading brand in the market. Since we provide grapes for two important brands, we want to, little by little, gain new markets by demonstrating how we are different. We are a new, versatile, young Pisco and we have an important marketing proposal. We are the only Pisco that you will see in discotecas, pubs, restaurants, hotels, fairs and presentations, social and cultural events, etc. We want to promote and create new ways to drink Pisco, one of our best-known cocktails is the “Maracuya Sour” which we created three years ago.

8.-Have you earned any awards?
In the past two years we have been awarded in the national pisco competition in the Jockey Plaza. In 2005 we obtained the Great Silver Medal with the highest score for our Pure Quebranta Traditional Pisco. This year (2006) at the regional Ica competition, we won the Great Gold Medal with the highest score for our Pisco Acholado 2006. We are the only Pisco that has obtained this prize in this category, with 96 points. There was no simple gold medal, only the silver medal.
The aforementioned competition is very competitive due to the fact that all the bodegas compete—which is more than 90% of the national market! Over 1900 exhibits!

9.-Do you have anything more you would like to add?
Yes! We also have another line which are the “macerados” or fruits that are macerated in Pisco. This is a new offer on the market, and we are the first to produce, bottle and distribute this product with an exclusive distributer. This line has 5 flavors: Camu Camu, Coca Leaf, Tamarind, Aguaymanto and our special “macerado” aji limo (a spicy pepper). This macerado is used to make a type of Pisco Sour known as “The devil’s lemonade.”
Also, Chefs are using our macerados in the kitchen, not only to flambé dishes, but also as an ingredient. For example, in our dish “lomo saltado,” they call it “The Devil’s Lomo Saltado,” and you can request it in your favorite restaurant. In total, we have some 18 flavors that will be released to the market little by little.
Thank you Jason for your time, just one more thing. Are you a subscriber to
But of course! [Laughs].

The editors
Translate by Katrina Heimark
Productor invitado

 Entrevista de al Sr.
Ing. Jason Astete Powell
Gerente General de Quebranta Export SAC

1.- Jason cuentanos ¿Qué es Buena Cosecha?
Bueno, el fundo Buena Cosecha es una empresa familiar dedicada a la producción, procesamiento y exportación de varios productos relacionados con la agricultura aplicando modernas técnicas Agroindustriales en las diferentes etapas del proceso.
Somos concientes del gran mercado exigente del cual ustedes forman parte. Es por ello que hemos juntado esfuerzos en desarrollar e innovar en el negocio Agroindustrial,
desde el cuidado de nuestros frutos, y además de un buen manejo Post-cosecha con el fin de ofrecer a nuestros principales clientes una gran variedad de productos de alta calidad.
Hay cerca de 1000 hectáreas de propiedad de unos cuantos socios ubicados en la costa central del Perú, en Ica, en un desierto denominado Villacuri; el clima especial con el que cuenta además de las 2700 horas luz/año y la pureza de sus aguas extraídas del subsuelo a 80mts de profundidad, nos permiten obtener la mas alta calidad en todos nuestros productos.
Quieres darle una miradita al Fundo Buena Cosecha, clic aquí

2.- Para ustedes. ¿Qué factores intervienen en la calidad de un buen pisco?

Se dividen en tres partes: la calidad de la uva es el factor principal. De qué valle procede, clima, las horas de luz a la que están expuestos los parrales diariamente, esto permite contar con una buena concentración de grados brix. Esto se obtiene en base a un buen suelo y del óptimo manejo del cultivo.
En el manejo post cosecha debe considerarse los factores de calidad en cuanto a los parámetros de temperatura, la calidad del mosto para así obtener un buen insumo desde el principio, materia prima y proceso de fermentación. Para lograr esto se debe contar con el personal capacitado.

Los materiales de recepción hoy en día son de acero inoxidable y en nuestro caso ya no utilizamos las cerámicas llamadas piscos, los lugares donde se almacena el mosto y el pisco deben ser frescos y limpios.

Buena Cosecha utiliza tanques de acero inoxidable tanto en la fermentación del mosto como en la recepción y los depósitos de nuestra guarda de pisco.

En la destilación la persona encargada en base a sus conocimientos, experiencia y de acuerdo a lo que el mercado le exige en ese momento, controla la calidad del pisco en cuanto a grado alcohólico, por eso es que cada año puede variar la calidad del pisco no todos los años el batch (destilada) es el mismo ni tenemos el mismo clima, por ende la uva no es la misma.

3.-¿Qué variedades de uva siembran y que tipo de pisco producen? marcas ...

Las variedades de uva que predominan en el fundo Buena Cosecha son: la quebranta, la italia y la torontel. Producimos Pisco Puro de uva Quebranta, Pisco de uva Italia, Pisco de uva Torontel y de la mezcla de estos tres ó dos ó más resulta nuestro Pisco Acholado, que viene a ser un “Blend” de nuestros piscos.

Muchos confunden el ”Blend” de los mostos pero no es así, soy de la idea que la uva no se debe mezclar al inicio del proceso, sino los piscos ya destilados, para así poder ver la evolución de cada uno y saber que se está mezclando. Esto te permite manejar, las combinaciones hasta obtener un pisco acholado de excelente calidad.

Como Quebranta Export SAC tenemos tres marcas Pisco Tradicional de uva quebranta, Pisco Italia, y Pisco Acholado. El eje principal es el Fundo Buena Cosecha, nuestra marca ya cuenta con 4 años en el mercado y contamos con todos los registros de Indecopi, denominación de origen, etc.

4.- ¿Qué significa Pisco selección especial o Premium?
Cuando uno va destilando y observa que de un mismo lote un pisco es superior; (tiene mas evolución que otro), es importante no mezclar el batch (la destilada) porque cada uno es distinto a otro. Uno va evaluando cual es el pisco muy completo, muy redondo y si la concentración de uva ha sido de 8 Kg. a 10 Kg. por litro, a esos piscos los llamamos piscos de línea selección especial o Premium ¿porque? hay dos parámetros para definir esto: por la cantidad de uva por litro de pisco (esto es de 8 a 10 Kg.), tiene mayor cuerpo, mayor concentración de alcoholes y por la guarda del pisco (almacenamiento), por el tiempo en reposo, esta es una ventaja del pisco igual que con el vino, va madurando conforme va evolucionando, mientras mas añejo mejor.

5. ¿Porqué es importante el reposo en la calidad del pisco?
Si lo tienes bien preservado, si el tanque es el optimo (acero inoxidable) que no tenga mucha aireación, porque se evaporan los alcoholes, lo que logra el reposo es que el pisco madure, como es un derivado de la uva todos los días evoluciona, mientras mas larga la evolución más redondo, percibes más aromas, y es un pisco más caro.

6.-¿Cuál es su producción actual?
El fundo Buena Cosecha cuenta con instalaciones propias, tenemos 45 Has de uva en total, esto equivale a 350,000.- Kg. de uva al año; recién este año vamos a producir el 100% de la uva que cosechamos, por lo general vendíamos a terceros para poder rentabilizar los cultivos y tener caja, nuestros volúmenes de venta no eran importantes como para justificar producir toda nuestra cosecha, pero como este año vamos a contar con nuestra propia bodega de ultima tecnología, nos permitirá producir nuestros 350,0000 Kg. aproximadamente unos 60,000 litros, nuestro punto de equilibrio.

7.-¿Qué planes para el futuro inmediato?
Como Buena Cosecha, primero posicionarnos como marca líder en el mercado. Como somos proveedores de uva de dos marcas importantes, poco a poco queremos ir ganando nuevos mercado diferenciándonos, porque somos un pisco nuevo, versátil, juvenil y que tenemos una propuesta de marketing importante: somos el único pisco que ves en discotecas, pubs, restaurantes, hoteles, exposiciones, eventos sociales, culturales, etc. promoviendo y creando nuevas formas de tomar el pisco, uno de nuestros cócteles de bandera es el “Maracuya Sour” creado por nosotros hace tres años.

8.-¿Qué premios han obtenido?
En estos dos últimos años hemos obtenido premios en el concurso nacional del pisco en el Jockey Plaza año 2005 Gran Medalla de Plata con el más alto puntaje para nuestro Pisco Puro Quebranta Tradicional.

En este año 2006 en el concurso regional de Ica, Ganamos La Gran Medalla de Oro con el más alto puntaje para nuestro Pisco Acholado 2006, somos el único pisco que ha obtenido este premio en esta categoría con 96 puntos, no hubo Medalla de Oro simple, solo la de plata.

El concurso arriba mencionado es muy competitivo debido a que participan todas las bodegas que representan más del 90% del mercado nacional con 1900 muestras.

9.-¿Algo más que agregar?
Si! tenemos una línea que son los Macerados. Es una oferta nueva en el mercado somos los primeros en producir, envasar y distribuir esta línea con un distribuidor exclusivo, la línea cuenta con 5 sabores: camu camu, hoja de coca, tamarindo, aguaymanto y nuestro macerado de bandera el de ají limo. Con este macerado se hace una versión del Pisco Sour que se llama ”la limonada del diablo”

También los Chefs utilizan nuestros macerados en la cocina no solo en el flameado de los platos sino como insumo; por decirles en el “lomo saltado”, lo llaman “lomo saltado a la diabla” ya lo pueden ir pidiendo en su restaurante favorito. En total tenemos 18 sabores de Macerados que irán lanzándose al mercado poco a poco.
Bien Jason, muchas gracias por tu tiempo, ahh, solo una cosa más, ¿ya te suscribiste a, pero por supuesto!! ... risas.

Los Editores 

lunes, 28 de marzo de 2016

In the land of Pisco... Piskos: The origin of a name

On a warm afternoon framed by  a magnificent sunset with a  flushed sky, many years before the arrival of the Spanish, Cacique (Chief) Chuquimanco and his people  admired in what is now the Bay of Paracas, (South Lima 200km.)  the horizon where thousands of birds fluttered seeking shelter. The villagers kept saying "pisscu, pisscu" bird-in Quechua which Word, the Chief and his subjects were inspired to apply to themselves. 
With the passage of time this remarkable community of potters along with their chicha jars bécame known as the piskos.
The Spanish arrival to these shores brought their native vine from the Canary Islands, which adapted to the new surroundings, giving rise to Quebranta grape. When distilled the produced spirit was stored in these jars also called piskos thus giving that name to a citiy a port and a river.

It is noteworthy that these jars were cured inside with honey for a proper seal.

Translated by Katrina Heimark


lunes, 22 de febrero de 2016

In the land of Pisco... Regulatory Council on the Pisco Guarantee of Origin

The Regulatory Council on the Pisco Guarantee of Origin (CR-DOPISCO) is a civil non-profit association which is subject to the laws and courts of the Republic of Peru, and represents the beneficiaries of the Pisco Guarantee of Origin (SO-DOPISCO). Its principal objective is administrating the DO-PISCO and, among other obligations, care for and defend the quality of Pisco. It is active in Peru and abroad. The association’s headquarters is located in the city of Pisco. 
The CR-DOPISCO was authorized by INDECOPI under resolution No. 002378-2011/DSD-INDECOPI on February 14, 2011. 

With the objective of integrating the vine to Pisco production chain, and involving those decision-makers of the CR-DOPISCO, the DO-PISCO regulations deal with four principal registries which are: producers, vine-growers, bodegas and tasters. Also there are secondary registries, one of which is “Friends of Pisco,” which is at the disposal of all those who are interested. 

The principal functions of the CR-DOPISCO are:
Guarantee the authenticity of Pisco for the consumer by keeping watch over and controlling production, the origin and quality of Pisco for commercialization in the national and international markets. 

Generate a system of quality control which includes the necessary analytical and organoleptic exams.

Act within the legal framework in the representation and defense of the general interests of the DO-PISCO.
Control the annual production of Pisco. 

The Pisco Production Process
The Harvest: This is the first step in the production of Pisco. Before the grape clusters, which are the raw materials used in Pisco, are harvested, the sugar concentration in the grape juice is measured (degrees brix). When the desired measurement is achieved, the management of the harvest is begun, and the grapes are taken to the bodega. 

The Removal: This is the process in which the grapes are removed from the stems that bind them to the cluster. This process can take place either manually or through modern machinery. Via this process, the grape is squeezed and thus begins to release its sweet juices, better known as must. 
Maceration: In this process, the squeezed grapes, with pulp, skin and seeds are allowed to sit for various days so that the juice or must acquires some of the typical characteristics of each Pisco grape. Fermentation has already begun, but this process allows for increased characteristics, especially that which is found in the grape skin. 

Pressing: In this process, as its name indicates, the grape solids which have been macerated, are pressed or squeezed. This allows the liquid or must to be separated from the solids and for the fermentation process to finalize. 
Fermentation: The must, which is now 100% liquid, continues into the fermentation process. This is a natural process due to natural yeast that the grape skins contain. This process lasts approximately 14 days, and at the end of the period, the sweet grape juice has been converted to a “young wine” (which has become an alcohol).

Distillation: This is one of the most important periods in the production of Pisco. It is the action of separating and purification by eliminating the undesired components. This is done by boiling the different liquid components that have made up the young wine (made from Pisco grapes) in alambiques. Once the vapors that have formed are condensed and return to their liquid state, they are in the form of Pisco. In order to obtain Pisco, the wine is distilled only once, in small batches, and directly to the alcohol proof that the producer requires. Copper alambiques are used. 

Maturing, or Secondary Fermentation: The Pisco must be stored in “rest” for at least 3 months. This period of maturation takes place in harmless tanks in order to reach an optimum level of the grapes’ organoleptic characteristics before the Pisco is bottled. It can only be stored in glass or ceramic containers, and afterwards, the Pisco is filtered in order to eliminate any sort of natural residual. Pisco may range from 38 to 48 proof, but normally bodegas finish their Pisco at a 42 proof. 
Pisco, Grape Firewater, One of a kind. Symbol of Identity and National Heritage
Pisco is a product that is obtained exclusively via the distillation of recently fermented wines, which come from Pisco grapes. Pisco is made by using methods that maintain high quality traditions and principles, and is protected by a Guarantee of Origin. Its production and commercialization are subject to the fulfillment of the DO-PISCO regulations as of February 14, 2011. These regulations are administered by the CR-DOPISCO ( 

What is a “Guarantee of Origin?”
The Guarantee of Origin is understood to be a name of a country, region or a determined area that is used to designate a product that is originally from that area, and whose qualities and characteristics are due exclusively and essentially to that geographic location. This includes natural factures, such as geography, climate, raw materials, etc, and human factors such as history, labor, art, ingenuity, tradition, etc. 

This is a description for Pisco in Peru that is similar to that of Tequila in Mexico, Champagne and Cognac in France, Brandy and Sherry in Spain, and multiple other Guarantees of Origin throughout the world. 

Pisco Zones or Departments

Production Zone, Pisco Zone, Cultivation Zone: These are the geographical areas as outlined by the Regulations of the Pisco Guarantee of Origin, which includes the coast of the departments of: Lima, Ica, Arequipa, Moquegua, and the valleys of Locumba, Sama and Caplima in the department of Tacna. 

Coast: The geographical area that extends along the Peruvian coastline, which changes in elevation from 0 meters above sea level to 2000 meters above sea level. 

Pisco must have the following organoleptic characteristics:

View: Without color, clear, clean, and brilliant. 

Nose: slightly alcoholic, somewhat resembles the grape from which it proceeds, also reminds of ripe or overripe fruits, flowers, very fine structure and balance, without any sort of strange elements.

Mouth: slightly alcoholic, a flavor that somewhat resembles the grape from which it proceeds, includes ripe or overripe fruits, flowery flavors, velvety flavors, clean, intense, very fine, with structure and balance, without any sort of strange elements. 

Pisco Grape Varieties  
Pisco must be exclusively produced using “Pisco Grapes” cultivated in recognized production areas. Pisco Grapes, their species and their cultivation areas are:

Pisco Grapes
Species: Vitis vinífera 
Cultivation Area: All Pisco Zones

Negra Criolla
Species: Vitis vinífera
Cultivation Area: All Pisco Zones

Species: Vitis vinífera
Cultivation Area: All Pisco Zones

Species: Vitis vinífera
Cultivation Area: All Pisco Zones

Species: Vitis vinífera
Cultivation Area: All Pisco Zones

Species: Vitis vinífera L
Cultivation Area: All Pisco Zones

Species: Vitis vinífera L
Cultivation Area: All Pisco Zones

Species: Vitisaestivales Cinérea E. Vitis vinífera L
Cultivation Area: Cultivation and Production is limited to the districts of Lunahuana, Pacaran and Zúñiga, in the province of Cañete in the Department of Lima.
The Pisco Grapes range from less aromatic (such as the Quebranta, Negra Criolla, Mollar and Uvina grapes) to the most aromatic (such as the Italia, Moscatel, Albilla and Torontel grapes). The Pisco grapes are known principally for their fruity and floral aromas, among other qualities. 

The Following Types of Pisco are Recognized:
Pure Pisco: This is Pisco obtained exclusively from one variety of Pisco grapes. 

Mosto Verde Pisco: This Pisco is obtained from the distillation of recently fermented Pisco grapes, but with interrupted fermentation. 

Acholado Pisco: This Pisco is obtained from the mix of Pisco grapes, must from Pisco grapes, completely fermented wines (fresh wines) made from Pisco grapes, or Piscos made from Pisco grapes. 

Regulatory Council on the Pisco Guarantee of Origin
Av. Benavides 2426 of. 203 Miraflores
Lima 18, Perú Telefax: (511) 2664626 
National Association of Pisco Producers 

Translated by Katrina Heimark 


martes, 2 de febrero de 2016

In the land of Pisco... How are Piscos that are presented in competitions ranked?

Translated by Katrina Heimark

Regional Competitions are classifiers for the National Competition, or the Grand Finale, thus there is only one competition, but it has two stages
Both the Regional Competitions and the National Competition only award no more than 30% of the samples. This percentage corresponds to the deserving Piscos depending on variety. 

Each Pisco taster evaluates the sample and gives it a score on the back of a card. The Official Tasters’ evaluation cards, whose tallies deviate in a range of 7 points above or below the average of the awarded scores, will be discarded after the calculation of the total sample points. For example:
Tasters award the following points:
1.- 87.

The scores add to 511 points, which when divided by 6, gives an average of 85.17 points for the sample.
Lowest Deviation: 85.17 minus 7= 78.17
Highest Deviation: 85.17 plus 7= 92.17

In order to calculate the deviation in the sample:

Any score that is higher than 92.17 is eliminated. Also, any score that is lower than 78.17 will be eliminated. Thus, out of the 6 scores, only 4 remain. Those four are added, and the final average is calculated. In this case, the score is 86.50, after calculating the deviation.

Any Pisco that does not achieve the minimum established score of 80 points will be declared void.

The Piscos that are awarded medals and diplomas receive them according to the following scale:

1. Great Gold Medal, must receive at least 92 points
2. Gold Medal, at least 85 points
3. Silver Medal, at least 82 points
4. Bronze Medal, at least 80 points
In the case in which the sample is within the Gold Medal Category, it will only receive the award if its score is within the top 30% of the Pisco Category.

For example:
Ten samples of quebranta Pisco are presented. After their evaluation, the ten samples are put in order according to their score. A calculation is made to designate the top 30%, which in this case would be 3 samples.
Thus, the three top scoring samples, which have received a minimum score of at least 80 points, will be awarded with the respective medals, and will pass on to the National Competition or will win the National Competition, if such is the case. Thus, there is the possibility that there are 3 gold medals, as all of them can achieve over 85 points.

Note: When the calculation of 30% results in a decimal point, the decimal is rounded up
For example, 30% of 3 samples is 0.9, which is then rounded up to 1, or 1 sample.
30% of 4 samples is 1.2, which is then rounded to 2 samples, in order to better favor the Pisco producers

Rounding up depends on the presence of a decimal. Rounding up or down does not occur starting with a 0.5 decimal.

Regulatory Council of Pisco Guarantee of Origin

November 2011. 

jueves, 21 de enero de 2016

In the land of Pisco... Pisco, Preparation and standards

The production of pisco protects the old preparation processes. The quality of the drink, obtained through the fermentation of special grapes treated in copper alembic stills, gained great popularity and prestige during the 17th, 18th and 19th Centuries, not only in the Peruvian territory, but also abroad, even reaching European countries and the United States (California). 
In Peru, the preparation of pisco begins in March each year with the harvest of carefully selected grapes from the coastal vineyards. Baskets of grapes are loaded in trucks, weighted, and unloaded in a rectangular masonry presses (“lagares”) that are necessarily located in the highest point of the cellar. From there, juice and musts will flow due to gravity, first into fermentation tanks and then to the still itself. Seven kilos of grape produce one liter of pisco. 

“Grape stomping” generally begins at dusk, avoiding the tiring heat of the day, and lasts until daybreak. A team of six “stompers” or threshers spread the grapes into the presses. Between songs and jokes, threshers do their job while drinking “chinguerito", a punch made from the same fresh grape juice they are squeezing, an adding a good portion of pisco, lime, clove and cinnamon. 

After the sixth threshing, the press gate is opened and the fresh grape juice falls into a deposit (puntaya), where it is stored for 24 hours. After that, the juice is taken to fermentation tanks through an ingenious channel system. Current cellars use garrotas (presses), grape mills and pneumatic presses, transforming the traditional stomping process in a highly efficient mechanized system. 

An biochemical process of alcohol fermentation occurs in the tanks, where the glucose contained in the grapes’ natural sugar becomes pyruvic acid and forms an ester, which losses carbon dioxide when releasing the carboxyl functional group of pyruvic acid through a biological mechanism typical of yeasts. The produced ethanol later accepts two protons from the NADH and the one released in the initial glycolysis stage, turning into ethanol or alcohol for human consumption.  

This is achieved through small natural yeasts contained in the fruit skin which digest one gram of sugar and transform it into half a gram of alcohol and half a gram of carbon dioxide. The process takes seven days. The producer checks the fermentation for any interruption to the process, and controls that the must temperature is not too high as the fruit may lose its natural aroma, which gives pisco its characteristic touch. When fermentation is concluded, the liquor is taken through the channels to the still, where distillation begins.  

The distillation technique and art consists in regulating the heat supply to achieve a low and constant rate that permits the generation of the desired aromatic components in the right moment. The process has two stages: vaporization of volatile must elements and condensation of vapors.
Pisco-producing areas 

The sole areas recognized as producers of pisco are the coast of the regions of Lima, Ica¬¬—where the Pisco Valley is located—Arequipa, Moquegua, and the valleys of Caplina, Locumba and Sama, in Tacna. 

A valley, a river, a port and a city located in the Peruvian coast have been known as Pisco since ancient times. These sites even appeared in a map of Peru made by Diego Mendez in 1574. 

In the mid 19th Century, Peru had planted almost 150,000 ha of vines for pisco production. This production level decreased gradually until reaching 11,500 ha in year 2002, due to a lack of incentives and the substitution of crops for others that bore greater short-term profits. 

After verifying the decline of this ancestral crop after almost four hundred and a half centuries, and aiming at progressively recovering previous production levels, in early 2003 the Peruvian Government decided to promote the increase of grape growing areas and pisco exportation, enacting the corresponding special measures.

At the same time, specific and strict legal mechanisms were issued, to allow producers to reach a high quality level, disqualifying those who failed to meet the basic requirements of obtaining a top-class liquor, even prohibiting them from exporting the liquor under the name "pisco”.

Current sown hectares produce some 800,000 liters of pisco per annum. In 2007, the main export destinations were: the United States, France, Spain, Germany, Canada, Colombia, Mexico, Argentina, Australia and the Czech Republic.

jueves, 14 de enero de 2016

In the land of Pisco... Difference between Pisco and other eaux-de-vie

The difference between authentic pisco and grape eaux-de-vie  made in other countries lies in five main characteristics. We do not intend to prejudge the quality of the latter; our only purpose is to highlight their differences from an objective point of view.
The variety of grape used as a raw material: 
The raw materials used in craft and industrial manufacturing are one of the great differences. Taste is emphasized over aroma, and therefore the grape varieties used go beyond aromatic Muscat grapes to include mainly Quebranta grapes (a Peruvian mutation) and, in a lower amount, Common Black and Mollar non-aromatic grapes. 
Non-rectification of vapors:
The distillation process used for preparing pisco takes place in discontinuous alembic stills or “falcas”. This prevents the elimination of several constituent elements of pisco during the rectification of distillation vapors that would otherwise fade if continuous alembic stills were to be used.

Period of time between must fermentation and distillation:
The definition of pisco says that the liquor is obtained by distilling fresh—that is, recently fermented—juice or musts. This prevents the use of long-stored grape juices or musts or already made wines. Current regulations in Peru provide that alembic stills used for preparing pisco must comply with the requirements defined by the commission for the supervision of technical standards, metrology, quality control and para-tariff restrictions of the National Institute for the Defense of Free Competition and Intellectual Property (INDECOPI).
No additives:

In Peru, the pisco distillation process does not stop until the alcohol by volume reaches an average of 42º or 43º Gay-Lussac degrees. No distilled or treated water is added in order to preserve the liquor’s body, color and other distinctive characteristics.
Process for obtaining alcohol contents:
At the beginning of the distillation process, the fresh musts’ alcohol level is high, reaching 75º Gay-Lussac degrees, approximately. As the process continues, this level decreases and permits other constituent elements to seep into the pisco distillate. Depending on the skill and tradition of the Peruvian pisco-maker, the operation is extended until an average of 42º to 43º degrees is obtained, although it can be reduced to a minimum of 38º Gay-Lussac degrees.


Translated by Katrina Heimark

miércoles, 6 de enero de 2016

In the land of Pisco... Exclusive Peruvian Appellation of Origin

Pisco, besides being the traditional beverage of Peru since Colony times and a symbol of the Peruvian spirit, is also what is called an “appellation of origin” in international trade.

Pursuant to the provisions of the Lisbon Agreement for the protection of appellations of origin and their international registration, and in accordance with the definition set forth by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), an appellation of origin is the name of a country, region, or a determined place that is used on products manufactured within them, which have qualities or characteristics that are essentially due to the geographical environment in which they are produced, including natural factors (geography, climate, raw material, etc.) and human factors (workforce, art, skill, tradition, etc.) 

Similarly, the International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV) also considers the “fame” or “reputation” before recognizing appellations of origin. It is, thus, a comprehensive concept of deep importance for the vinicultural sector, as it constitutes a legal instrument for the development of an economy that pursues a “collective promotion”, guaranteeing the quality, origin, and, in many cases, the tradition and history of products that are conceived by the close relationship between human groups and their land.

Moreover, appellations of origin are a mechanism for consumer protection and the defense of free and fair competition. Regarding Geographical Indications, Section 3 of the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), signed within the guidelines of the World Trade Organization, establishes that: “the countries shall provide the legal means to prevent the use of any means in the designation or presentation of a good that indicates or suggests that the good in question originates in a geographical area other than the true place of origin in a manner which misleads the public as to the geographical origin of the good, and also to prevent any use which constitutes an act of unfair competition.”

In conclusion, one of the key elements for recognizing an appellation of origin and/or geographical indication is the pre-existence of a geographical reference that creates the denomination of a good produced in such territory. Accordingly, the countries define an adequate legal framework to prevent the use of a designation or the presentation of a product that suggests that the good in question comes from a geographical area other than its true place of origin.

In accordance to this concept, the word “Pisco” is an exclusive Peruvian designation, firstly because it refers to a geographical location that has existed and been known by such name since Colony times, encompassing a city, a valley, a river, a port and a province in the southern coast of Peru.
Furthermore, from the legal viewpoint of provisions regulating the political boundaries of Peru, the District of Pisco exists as such since Peru became and independent republic in 1821, and it was registered as a Province through a Congress Law dated October 13th, 1900, published in “El Peruano” Official Gazette on October 30th, 1900.

Secondly, the extraction, harvest and subsequent manufacturing and preparation of this liquor is carried out through a unique productive process based on the Peruvian technique developed and spread in the producing regions.

Furthermore, the grape used for preparing pisco grows thanks to the mild weather and the tectonic formation of the land that characterize the province of Pisco and also extends to the valleys of the Departments of Lima, Ica, Arequipa, Moquegua and some valleys of the Department of Tacna, where similar conditions exist. Additionally, the reputation of pisco has a clear Peruvian origin that dates back to the 17th Century and continues up to our days.

One of the many examples of the history of pisco are the testimonies collected by Herbert Asbury, who researched, among other aspects, the popularity of pisco in the Western coast of the United States. One of them is quoted below:

 “The Bank Exchange was especially noted for Pisco Punch, invented by Duncan Nichol, who was second only to Professor Jerry Thomas as bar-tender. During the eighteen-seventies it was by far the most popular drink in San Francisco, although it was sold for twenty-five cents a glass, a high price for those days. (…) But descriptions of the San Francisco of the period abound with lyrical accounts of its flavor and potency, and it must have been the crème de la crème of beverages. Its base was Pisco brandy, which was distilled from the grape known as Italia, or La Rosa del Peru, and was named for the Peruvian port from which it was shipped. (...) And the brandy itself, (...) was thus described by a writer who first tasted it in 1872: ‘It is perfectly colourless, quite fragrant, very seductive, terribly strong, and has a flavour somewhat resembling that of Scotch whiskey, but much more delicate, with a marked fruity taste. It comes in earthen jars, broad at the top and tapering down to a point, holding about five gallons each’.”

One further example that explicitly mentions the origin and prestige of Pisco is the centenarian “Boletín de la Guerra del Pacífico” (“War of the Pacific Gazette”) published in 1980 by Editorial Andres Bello of Santiago, Chile. Their pages include testimonies of Chilean soldiers who participated in the occupation of Ica and Pisco in Peru, and they textually state the following:
“... their main buildings are used as cellars to store cancos (jars) full of the famous eau-de-vie that took up the name of the port (…). The city of Ica has between seven and eight thousand residents and is surrounded by farms that specifically grow the grapevines used for producing pisco (…). The occupation troops eat wonderfully: good vegetables, abundant meat, fresh bread, a glass of pisco at lunch, a glass of wine at dinner and, above all, delicious, abundant watermelons, which are the favorite of our rotos.” (Report of Colonel Jose Domingo Arrunategui. Boletín de la Guerra del Pacífico [War of the Pacific Gazette], Santiago de Chile, Editorial Andrés Bello, 1980.)

The Peruvian legislation establishes that appellations of origin are owned by the State, which in turn grants authorizations for their use.

It is noteworthy that, to date, no country has registered the pisco appellation of origin under the scope of the Lisbon Agreement. A multilateral system of notification and registration of geographical indications for wines and spirits is under negotiation within the multilateral framework of WTO, and Peru is actively participating in this process. However, the word “pisco” is registered in some countries as a brand, in violation of current international regulations where it is clearly stated that an appellation of origin cannot be registered as a brand under any circumstance.