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The distiller, Ceslo Jaquez, with a bottle of Don Cuco Sotol.

The distiller, Ceslo Jaquez, with a bottle of Don Cuco Sotol.

Chihauhua in a Bottle

This sotol is largely unknown in the USA- and in other parts of Mexico for that matter. But in Chihuahua, and especially in the northern ranch country, this fine drink is not justy known, it is produced by many. There are several bottled/labelled varieties but most of it is produced by locals and held in old glass or plastic containers. I like to buy it on the street and hear the story behind it.

The kind I like that is legal is Don Cuco Sotol. Their jovens and aged varieties carry more character and body. Their reposada is not over sweet, has a good amount of smoke, and very little strong aftertaste. They even make a crema version that rivals Baileys.

Is Sotol Tequila?

Not really. It seems alot like a tequila, and it is entered into tequila competions for taste- where it often wins.

Here are some notes on Sotol from the Old Town Liquor site –where you can buy it!

Don Cuco Sotol was the first to export and import sotol. The plant sotol, or dasylirion Wheeleri, is found abundantly in northern Mexico and also
in the southwest United States. The Mexican state government is beginning to fund farmers to grow sotol commercially because of its little need for water.

Sotol, like whiskey and bourbon, was bootlegged throughout much of the early 20th century.  Prior to that, sotol was a popular drink in the early 1900s and has a long history. The oldest distillery can be found in the state of Texas. In Chihuahua, Mexico, 400,000 liters were sold yearly before Prohibition.  During Prohibition, sotol became too expensive to produce and faded into a forgotten drink.

Where to Buy Sotol

People on our Copper Canyon train trips buy it right at the Don Cuco ranch. One place is online at the link above for the Tequila Superstore . It is now being imported and can be found on occaision at larger liquor stores

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