8 Things You Didn’t Know About Peruvian Pisco
Everyone has heard about the cocktail Pisco Sour at least once. But not many know that the base spirit for the cocktail comes from Latin American nations of Chile and Peru. There is a long standing debate between the two nations, as to who can lay more claim to the spirit.
Peru has the upper hand since it has Designation of Origin for Pisco. And here are 8 things you didn’t know about Peruvian Pisco.
1. Pisco is produced in only south of Peru- Lima, Ica, Arequipa and Moquegua y Tacna. The spirit has Designation of Origin and if produced beyond this region, it is not considered Pisco.
2. Pisco is made by distilling fermented grape juice. It can easily be described as a Latin American version of brandy. The only difference is that it is not aged in oak barrels hence devoid of any color.
3. Wine and wine producing grapes was introduced by Spanish conquistador in these country. This wine was then distilled to create Pisco.
4. The etymology of the name is varied and wide, everything from a Quechuan town known Pisku, the clay pots called piskos, originally used to contain the distilled spirit to a local name for a bird.
5. There are 3 styles of Pisco:
a) Pisco Puro which is made from a single grape variety. It is made from Quebranta grape a mutation of a Spanish origin grape.
b) Pisco Acholados is a blend of 2 different distillates of different grapes.
c) Mosto Verde which means ‘green must’ is the third style of Pisco. It differs in its production method; fermentation of the grape juice is interrupted before all sugars are converted and then directly distilled.
6. Pisco can be made only from 8 varieties, aromatic and non-aromatic, of grapes. Quebranta (commonly used for Pisco Puros), Mollar, Negro Criolla and Uvina are the non aromatic while Italia, Muscatel, Torontel and Albilla and aromatic.
7. Total Pisco produced in 2013 in Peru was approximately 7.2 million liters.
8. Official Pisco Day is celebrated on the third Sunday of July each year. Pisco Sour, the famous cocktail, also has day dedicated to it, first Saturday of February.