There are 5 production regions recognized by the D.O in Perú: Lima, Ica, Arequipa, Moquegua and the Locumba, Sama and Caplina Valleys of Tacna. All the regions produce different, but very high-caliber brandies. This blog will give you a quick summary and a map of each region.
The northernmost production region is Lima. As you already know, Lima is the capitol of Perú, a bustling city of more than 10 million people. Did you know that Lima is also a department? There are 24 departments in Perú, similar to States in the US. The Department of Lima extends way beyond the capitol to encompass more than 32,000 square kilometers. It is also recognized by the D.O. as a pisco-producing region.
Ica is to the south of Lima. Here you will find some of the largest vineyards and distilleries in Perú. According to the Ministry of Production, Lima and Ica are the leading regions in terms of pisco production. In fact, 90% of Perú’s pisco comes from Lima and Ica.
The regions south of Ica- Arequipa, Moquegua and Tacna are known for Negra Criolla piscos and acholados made with Negra Criolla and Moscatel or Italia. In Arequipa, you will find pisco producing regions such as the Caravelí Valley, the highest pisco producing region in Perú, and the Majes Valley
To the South of Arequipa is Moquegua, where you won’t find many quebranta grapes, but you will find Negra Criolla and Abilla and less of Italia and Mollar varieties. An interesting fact about some parts of Arequipa, Moquegua and Tacna, the region you will learn about next, is that in these regions, they used to bury their earthenware fermentation jars when making wine and pisco. This allowed them to control the temperature during fermentation. This practice was not used in other parts of Peru, making these regions especially unique. Artifacts suggest that the technology and organization of winemaking in the Moquegua area reflects Spanish models, but also earlier Roman models.
If you head south of Moquegua, you will reach the southernmost region, Tacna. Located on the border with Chile, this region includes smaller areas producing pisco, only in the valleys of Caplina, Locumba, and Sama. In Tacna, you will find mostly Negra Criolla, Italia and Quebranta varieties.