• Location: San Pedro de la Cueva, Sonora
  • Agave: A. Yaquiana (Pacifica) – A. angustifolia ?
  • Maestro Mezcalero: Rafael Quijada
  • Bottle: #117
  • ABV: 50.3%
  • Tasting keywords: chocolate mole, pickled mango, white pepper
  • NOM: 168
  • Buy it today (for purchase options scroll to the bottom of this article)


The 2019 Batuq Reserva comes at you like a freshly opened bottle of giardinera: The mix of lactic fermentation and fresh vegetables is truly distinctive.


That lactic scent isn’t misleading, there’s some of that as you taste the 2019 Batuq reserva as well but that’s just half of the conversation in your mouth. It opens with a rich chocolate mole tinged with white paper and then leaves you with a hint of pickled mango.

Method / Background Notes

Unlike many other Bacanora producers the Encinas family farm their own agave and they’ve been doing it for more than 20 years. This Reserva represents that investment and commitment because it’s composed of 10-20 year old agaves that were caponed, as they threw up their quiotes they were cut off so that the plants filled up with more sugar rich carbs than usual, and then rested for two years. That means much more mature plants with a higher brix which yields a higher ABV with a richer flavor set. This bottle is a clear argument for that style. The Encinas family produces 500-750 bottles of reserva per year, I’m looking forward to doing a vertical tasting in a few years to see how all of these compare.

In Mexico it comes with an embossed gold label – it’s the pride of the Encinas Molina production and a long time tradition shared at family celebrations and among friends. The only down side is that so little remains in Mexico. Importer Michael Hurley told me that “I feel bad because now all goes to US.”