There are diferent kinds of agaves. It´s quality is defined by the raw materials, the process of elaboration as well as the social and cultural context of its consumption. Oaxaca is still ruled by the use and customs and every variety of agave gives a unique type is this sweet, acidic, with expresive, aromatic herbal, floral or honey families. The ground is an important variable, and altitude conditions, climate and terrain gives it that unique character to the plant with the knowledge acquired by generations of mezcal makers who put their special touch to make a true “beverage of the gods.”
Espadín (Agave Angustifolia)
It the largest range of agave species in the country. Ancestor of the blue maguey tequila and henequen chelem (maya), doba-yej (Zapoteco: flor maguey), hamoc (seri), cuu juyá (may: monte de mezcal), incoyo (Mixtec), bacanora, yavi Maguey’s field, sculls, sprat, mezcal and zapupe. This are just some of the several names in different indigenous languages.
Tobalá (Agave Potatorum)
The Tobalá is the most appreciated wild Maguey Cactus for mezcal in Oaxaca, Tobala from (Zapoteco language), Papalometl (in nahuatl: maguey butterfly), yauiticushi (Mixteco language) or maguey del monte.
Tepeztate (Agave Marmorata)
Its beautiful inflorescence plant, is used for ornaments and spirituos ceremonias. Tdu (Zapoteco language), Pitzometl (Náhuatl language), it is also called maguey de caballo.
Madre Cuishe (Agave Karwinskii)
Typical of southern arid zones of Mexico and with several variaties “bi-cuish” (Chontal language), “bicuixe”, “madrecuixe”and “tobasiche” (Zapoteco language), dob-cirial, cachutum (Popoloca language), it is also called barril or cirial.
Arroqueño (Agave Americana Var Oaxacensis)
This is a domesticated variety, arroqueño one of the most typical and most aged magueys in Oaxaca. It is called by Otomi culture t´ax´ and teometl in Náhuatl language).