- Location: San Dionisio Ocotopec, Oaxaca
- Agave: Espadín / A. angustifolia
- Maestro Mezcalero: Crispín García Méndez
- ABV: 50%
- Tasting keywords: Sweet roasted agave, dried apricot.
Sweet roasted agave sugar, lemon oil.
Hits your mouth hot, I definitely feel the alcohol. The flavor is a medium cut of roasted agave with a touch of dried apricot.
Method / Background Notes
Geü Beez is the Zapotec name for Río de Avispas which is the location of the first palenque in San Dionisio Ocotepec which is on the golden road of mezcal that stretches between Ocotlán and Santiago Matatlan. The maestro mezcalero, Crispín García Méndez, makes six bottles to date – I have only tasted the 50% ABV Espadín. They also have a lower proof 45% ABV Espadín as well as a Tobalá, Tobalá/Espadín Ensemble, Cirial, and a Tepextate.
The process is the same for all of them with age variation by agave type. The 50% Espadín details are:
- 8-10 year old agaves
- Roasted underground in a conical oven
- Crushed by a horse drawn tahona
- Fermented in open air pine tinas
- Double distilled in a copper alembic still
There is a wonderful 24 minute documentary that weaves together how Geü Beez is made with Mendéz’s personal story.
Mendéz and his crew speak elegantly to the struggles that define the world of mezcal from the hard work and low pay of today to the very unglamorous days when mezcal was an outlaw spirit. Parts of it have Mendéz speaking in a stunningly beautiful Zapotec with Spanish subtitles. It’s heart rending to hear stories like Mendéz’s who says that he suffered deeply when he went to work in LA – he went to earn for his family but being cut off from them was terrible for him. Context like that redefines the larger stories of our era and Mendéz provides plenty more about his process and how it continues a tradition forward to the present.