agave varieties - types of agave

Agave & Mezcal : do you know all 12 varietes of agave ?

Mezcal is known to be made from agave, but it has multiple names and varieties. To be precise, 12 in total. Do you know what each one of them brings to the mezcal it produces ?

You know it as agave, right? However, it has multiple names like maguey, agave, pita, cabuya, and fique or mezcal. Anyway, the important thing is to know the varieties of agave. Each one brings a special characteristic to the mezcal produced. But, tequila is only produced from Agave Tequilana Weber (blue agave), while mezcal is produced from 12 varieties. They can be used alone or in combination to obtain different taste. Below we show you the varieties of agave.


Agave americana var. oaxacensis

Also known as Arroqueño, this is a domesticated variety, the sweet arroqueño is one of the longest mezcal magueys (long and narrow portion of land). We recommend mezcal Del Maguey and Siete Misterios.


Agave durangensis

It is exclusive to Durango and Zacatecas and used for production of both pulque and, of course, mezcal. Cenizo is one of the most fibrous agave varieties that can take between 9 and 13 years to mature. Provides a sweet and deliciously creamy mezcal taste. We recommend the fine mescal Lágrimas de Dolores Cenizo Añejo.


Agave tequilana

This agave is the raw material of tequila’s mezcal wine, a beverage that today is named after its region of origin, Tequila.


Agave angustifolia

Known as the ancestor of the tequila blue maguey. It has narrow leaves and is the agave of which more common names have been registered and this is due to its wide distribution in Mexican territory: Maguey Espadín, Maguey de Mezcal, Maguey Mezcalero, Maguey San Martinero, Maguey de Espadilla, Dob-Yee.


Agave salmiana

Originates from the Potosino-Zacatecan highlands, a naturally and culturally integrated mezcal region. In the crop, the period of rest for this agave in the field is of six months or two years, in which the plant concentrates the sugars before harvest.


Agave univittata

Small variety of agave, but one with a lot of sugar. A variety coming from the Tamaulipas region of Mexico, near Texas, where it grows as well.


Agave rhodacantha

His beauty and solitary presence in the highlands earned him the name “Mexican”. Mezcal brands like El Jolgorio are renowned for making use of the Mexican agave Rhodacantha.


Agave maximiliana

Reputed for its history. In fact, banned mezcals during the eighteenth century in Sinaloa used Maximiliana. For example, Racilla La Venenosa is a mezcal that uses agave maximiliana.


Agave potatorum

Its rose-shaped shape makes its beauty remarkable. It grows among the pines and oaks, something that helps it to withstand the drought. It has smoky, light and subtle flavors unique to its kind.


Agave cupreata

Sweet and bronco like the mezcals and the cultures of the Balsas basin. We recommend Mezcal Derrumbes Michoacán, excellent and thanks to cupreata its aromas oscillate between mature fruits.


Agave americana

Provides intense aromas, but is soft to the palate. Actually, it is one of the mezcals with greater flavor and distinction. Notes of fresh herbs, cooked agave, ocote and cinnamon stand out. For instance, the mezcal El Tinieblo includes American agave. Here smoked aromas are very present.


Agave marmorata

Del Maguey Mezcal also produces Mezcal Wine with agave marmorata. Furthermore, this agave provides a lighter body with a bright, sweet smell of banana and cotton candy.



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