Grupo Logoche

Grupo Logoche is a cooperative founded and run by the palenqueros and maguey growers of Barrio Logoche in Lachigüizo. Lachigüizo is a mezcalero community located outside of Miahuatlán de Porfirio Díaz in the Sierra Sur region of Oaxaca. Composed entirely of immediate and extended family, the co-op is made up of eleven men and one woman, all of whom have worked with agave their entire lives. Each batch is made collectively: every member contributes their share of time, energy, and ripe maguey.

Working in accordance with local tradition and methods, they harvest under the full moon and slow-roast the piñas for 4-5 days with mezquite and other local acacia woods. After the agave is unearthed, they let it rest for around a week, allowing the caramelized hearts to cool and the early stages of dry fermentation to begin. When the maguey is declared “ready,” they chop it with machetes and run it through a mechanical mill. Depending on the type of agave and the ambient temperature, the shredded fibers then rest for one or two days in their seven sabino wood (Montezuma cypress) fermentation tanks, which each hold between 800 and 1200 liters. Once the dry-fermented fibers have reached a certain temperature, they begin to give-off a pungent, slightly alcoholic aroma and the mezcaleros add filtered well water to the tanks to continue the fermentation.

During distillation, the co-op uses an elongated steel cap with a built-in thermometer, that allows them to carefully monitor the temperatures in the still’s boiler. This control helps them manage levels of the various compounds in the distillation process, ensuring the quality and flavor of their destilado.

Soil type: colorada, roja, cascajo, negra

Oven: 10-ton capacity conical earthen oven

Mashing: Machete and mechanical mill

Fermentation: 7 Montezuma cypress wood tanks. 1000-1200-liter capacity.

Distillation: For these initial batches, the group used three different copper pot stills, two with a 250-liter capacity, and a third 300-liter still.

MARIE NAKAZAWA