La Tierra

SOUTH AFRICAN TEQUILA PRODUCTION PROCESS

Agave: It’s like Tequila, but make it local!

At La Tierra, we take pride in celebrating South African culture, while still honoring the traditional roots of Mexico and Tequila. Our craft South African Tequila brand is committed to ensuring that our product adheres to the same standards for traditional Tequila production

It is important to understand the process of Tequila production before explaining La Tierra’s unique production process, which celebrates the finest Karoo Agave.

Tequila is a spirit made from the fruit of the Agave plant, specifically the Blue Weber Agave/Agave Tequilana. Each variation of the Agave plant produces its own distinct flavor, and by using only one source of Agave, Tequila producers create a standardised taste and process. 

Tequila production follows a specific process to ensure that the ancient and indigenous knowledge of making Tequila is preserved and to provide a standardised process for production. 

So for Tequila to be called Tequila: 

  • The pina must be harvested from Blue Weber Agave/Agave Tequilana 
  • It must be produced from farm to bottle in the city of Tequila, Jalisco  in Mexico , and
  • It must follow traditional methods of production.
 

Agave spirits, on the other hand, can be made from any variety of Agave plants and can be produced anywhere in the world. Non-traditional production methods are used for Agave spirits, and these can differ from brand to brand.

close up of karoo agave americanaIn South Africa, the Karoo Agave variation is known as Agave Americana and can take between 10 and 20 years to reach maturity. The semi desert region of the Karoo provides perfect conditions for the sustainable growth of Agave plants, which is why La Tierra Agave is proud to use the Agave Americana in our production process.

LTA South African Tequila Production Process:

Nestled in the heart of Cape Town’s Old Castle Brewery in Woodstock, lies our micro-distillery, African Spirit Lab, where a team of gifted scientists artfully blend premium ingredients from nature to redefine the art of craft spirits. 

Utilising our unique production process, we have expertly crafted a range of South African Tequilas, infused with the exquisite Karoo Agave, setting new standards for artisanal spirits.

  • La Tierra Agave makes sure to source organically grown Karoo Agave Americana from the Karoo region of the Western Cape to use for our South African Tequila production process. 
  • The ripened pina (fruit) of the Agave plant is hand-harvested, then roasted in a brick pit for three days.
  • The cooked pina is cut into pieces and transferred to a basket press, where all the sweet Agave nectar is collected and pumped into our fermentation tanks.
  • The Agave nectar is fermented with yeast, and after 3-5 days the wash is transferred to a copper pot still for the first distillation. This step provides the Agave spirit with its fruity, vegetal & smoky grass flavours.
  • The distilled Agave spirit is then double distilled using our hybrid distillation steel column. This provides the Agave spirit with its smooth, clean finish. 
  • The change in colour and flavour is the result of ageing the La Tierra Agave Blanco in oak barrels. La Tierra Agave Reposado is aged for 3 months, and our La Tierra Agave Anejo aged for 1 year in recycled American oak barrels.

 

We take our time cultivating a smooth and sweet South African Tequila for you to enjoy with friends—around the braai, at the pool or in your favorite Agave cocktail. Our three magnificent blends—La Tierra Agave Blanco, La Tierra Agave Reposado, and the soon-to-be-released Anejo—all feature the finest Karoo Agave, making them the ultimate choice to raise a glass to life’s cherished moments, in the company of those who matter most.

You can shop for your La Tierra, 100% Karoo Agave spirits here!