To tout their piscos, some brands have appropriated production methods required by the D.O., marketing them as unique proprietary techniques. Attempting to distinguish a pisco based on these supposed proprietary production methods is misleading. This blog post will explain why.
First, the D.O. in Peru requires that all pisco be made from 100% grapes. If you produce a clear brandy in Peru and label it pisco, it is strictly required that the spirit be made only from grapes. Nothing can be added to it, not even water. That means if a producer does add something to the must, grapes, or wine before production, or to the brandy after distillation, then they are in violation of the Denomination of Origin in Peru and are subject to punishment. We will explain why producers of other spirits might add water to their distillates in another blog post.
Second, the single distillation method is often appropriated for marketing purposes. For the same aforementioned reasons, claiming single distillation as a proprietary production method is fallacious. ALL pisco made in Peru is distilled once because the D.O. for pisco in Peru requires it.
As we have mentioned on our website and in several blog posts, single distillation allows producers to highlight the terroir and distinctiveness of each grape. It also means master distillers have one chance to obtain the perfect pisco at just the right ABV. This is obviously very different than the production methods used to make other spirits, including Chilean brandy.
Now, does the single distillation method make pisco superior to other distillates such as Chilean brandy, whiskey, or gin? Perhaps, but why compare apples to oranges? Does the single distillation method differentiate one pisco brand from another? Absolutely not. It is part of what makes pisco, pisco.
In summary, if people ask: “Why do you single distill and add nothing to PiscoLogía?”, the answer is simple: because the D.O. regulations require it. Why do the D.O. regulations require it? The D.O. for pisco in Peru was formed to formalize, regulate, and protect the production traditions perfected over hundreds of years in Peru.
For more information about the D.O. in Peru, please visit: https://www.indecopi.gob.pe/documents/1902049/3747615/pisco+%281%29.pdf/99a9fdfb-0b6a-97ff-06fe-37ddec01899f