NETA works closely with several small, family producers and a cooperative of twelve palenqueros from the southern valleys and hills of Miahuatlán, Oaxaca. Situated at the southern tip of the Central Valleys and the foot of the Sierra Madre del Sur mountains, the area is renowned for the strong character of its people, its diverse landscapes, and the rich agricultural and culinary traditions that have been maintained throughout generations. As such, the region has preserved its reputation for producing some of the finest mezcales and agave spirits anywhere in Mexico.
The recipes and knowledge have been passed down and shared through family and community ties. Some mezcaleros follow their grandfathers’ traditions to the letter, while others experiment to carefully fine-tune the laborious process in accordance with their own tastes, observations, and relationships with the natural world. No two productions can ever be exactly the same as environmental conditions, water, natural yeasts, and soil types all contribute to their nuances just as much as the touch of their maker.
Since 2012, our friendships and working relationships with families in rural communities in Miahuatlán and the Central Valleys of Oaxaca have granted us participation in a world elusive to those not born into it. It is this humbling privilege that allows us to present a carefully curated selection of extraordinary spirits that would otherwise never be found outside of their place of origin. Así es, la mera mera NETA.
|Max Rosenstock, Niki Nakazawa & Yuskei Murayama
(SUSTAINABLE, ORGANIC, BIODYNAMIC)
Tierra Colorada o Roja (Leptosol) is a shallow reddish-colored soil with presence of gravel, it is exposed to the sun throughout the day, rocky but can still be worked when the earth is wet.
Plots with Tierra colorada/roja: El Llano, La Mina
Tierra Blanca (Calcisol) is a white limestone-rich, calcareous soil, loose, salty with little presence of rocks. Less common in Logoche, this soil type in prevalent in San Luis Amatlán and Xitlapehua.
Cascajo (Leptosol) lands are composed of approximately 60% stones, pebbles and gravel. Cascajo land stores moisture on the hillsides and is well-suited for growing maguey. It is the land that maguey likes the most because its roots can grow better. Producers recognize two classes of cascajo according to their color, red cascajo and black cascajo.
Plots with Cascajo: Piedra lisa, La Mina
Tierra Negra (Cambisol), this soil type is located in the valleys and does not store much humidity. It floods in the rainy season because the water does not drain well and stagnates. The piñas grown on this soil type tend to be on the smaller side.