All of the mezcales in the Mal Bien family have been selected for the sense of place that they express. In each sip you’ll find the land where the plants were raised, the techniques that have become tradition in the village where it was distilled, and the experience of the mezcalero who produced it.

 
 
 

Felipe & Ageo Cortes

Mengoli de Morelos, Miahuatlán, oax.

Felipe and his son Ageo are the 3rd and 4th generations of the Cortes family to produce mezcal in the Miahuatlán District of Oaxaca, an area famous for its abundance and diversity of A. karwinskii sub-species (madrecuixe, tobaxiche, etc.). The community of Mengoli de Morelos where they live and work has a population of just under 200 people and 400+ dogs. They are related to the neighboring Ramos family via Felipe’s wife (Ageo’s mother), Cesilia, whose sister Cleotilde is married to Victor Ramos.

 

The Basics

How old are you, and how long have you been making mezcal?

Ageo: My father is 72 and has been a mezcalero for 55 years. I am 27 and I say have 10 years of experience. I worked in the palenque when I was little, but I was 17 the first time I put my name on a batch.

How many generations has you family been producing mezcal?

Ageo: I am the fourth generation. I learned from my father, he learned from my grandfather, and he learned from his father.

How many years has your family been using your palenque?

Ageo: 30

What should the world know about your family or your village?

Ageo: I want everyone to know that it is not just my father behind our mezcales - our whole family is included in the production. My mother Cesilia, my wife Asela, and my sisters Amelia and Griselda; the story behind it belongs to all of them.

 

Production

Distilling Season(s): January-June, October, November

Woods Used in Oven: Encino and Yegareche (Quercus spp.), Mesquite (Prosopis spp.), Palo de Aguila (Alnus acuminata)

Oven Size: 9 tons, 5 tons

Cook Time: 8-10 Days

Rest between between Oven and mill: Tepextate and tobalá are milled immediately; madrecuixe, bicuixe, espadín and others will rest for 5-7 days.

Mill Type: Ox drawn tahona

Fermentation vessel: Open air sabino (Taxodium mucronatum) tinas

Water Source: Well

Fermentation Time: 3-8 Days

Still Type: Copper Alambiques (500 & 275 liter) with refrescadera

Refrescadera: Water is changed one time during distillation.

Distillations: 2

 
 

Victor & Emanuel Ramos

Mengoli de morelos, miahuatlan, oax.

Victor and his son Emanuel are the 3rd and 4th generations of the Ramos family to produce mezcal in the Miahuatlán District of Oaxaca, an area famous for its abundance and diversity of A. karwinskii sub-species (madrecuixe, tobaxiche, etc.). The community of Mengoli de Morelos where they live and work has a population of just under 200 people and 400+ dogs. They are related to the neighboring Cortes family via Victor’s wife (Emanuel’s mother), Cleotilde, whose sister Cesilia is married to Felipe.

 
 

The basics

How old are you, and how long have you been making mezcal?

Emanuel: Forever. Our whole lives. When my dad was five, his job was to poke the fire on the still; when I was 5, it became my job. Now, I’m 24 and my dad is 54.

How many generations has your family been producing mezcal?

Emanuel: I am the fourth generation.

How many years has your family been using your palenque?

Emanuel: 20 years here. Before that, we worked in the palenque of my grandfather Pablo Ramos Sanchez.

What should the world know about your family or your village?

Emanuel: That we are a family and a village who make good mezcal, and we are proud of it.

Batch tech sheets

Production

Distilling Season(s): January-June, November-December

Woods used in Oven: Encino (Quercus sp.), Mesquite (Prosopis sp.),

Oven Size: 13 tons, 8 tons

Cook Time: 8-10 Days

Rest bet. Oven and Mill: 3-5 days.

Mill Type: Ox drawn tahona

Fermentation vessel: Open air sabino (Taxodium mucronatum) tinas

Water Source: Well

Fermentation Time: 3-8 Days

Still Type: Copper Alambiques (275 liter) with refrescadera

Refrescadera: Water is changed one time during distillation.

Distillations: 2

 

Don Lucio Morales López, Espadín

San dionisio ocotepec, oax.

 
Lucio Portrait.jpeg
MB Lucio Front RGB.jpg
mezcal mb espadin back.jpg
 
Don Lucio Web stats.jpg

Mezcal is a great primer for the kind of deep thoughts that make you want to turn off your cellphone and lose track of time, which works out perfectly when you visit the town of San Dionisio Ocotepec, Oaxaca, where they have more than a few palenques, hardly any cell service, and listening to the locals speak Zapotec, you’ll will be as likely to check the century as the hour. 

Don Lucio and his sons represent the third and fourth generations of mezcaleros in the Morales Family, and the first to work entirely with agave grown by the family.

The finished product is a beautiful, easy drinking mezcal that is true to the place and people who created it. Complex enough to be enjoyed on its own, at 91 proof it’s also assertive enough to shine through in cocktails where lower ABV mezcales can easily get lost.

TASTING NOTES
Smell: roasted meat, tropical fruit, ground corn, lime pith, pine tar
Sip: leather, caramelized banana
Swallow: mineral, barley

MB Destilado Bottle.png

 

Sign up to learn about new releases and receive invitations to tastings and other events.