October 6, 2021 403 PM
MARFA — Marfa’s one and only distillery is launching its first product, Chihuahuan Desert Sotol today, promising a liquor with earthy, crisp, herbaceous and bright flavors and hints of white pepper. On Friday, the distillery will also open the doors to its tasting room in Marfa for the first time.
Chihuahuan Desert Sotol is distilled in Mexico and then processed and bottled inside Marfa’s 1920s-era Godbold Feed Mill-turned-distillery, the same building that holds the company’s tasting room on West El Paso Street. The debut sotol was made in collaboration with Sotol Don Celso and Master Sotolero Jacobo Jacquez in Janos, Mexico, and the distillery aims to bring broader awareness to the spirit of sotol in America.
Founded by entrepreneurs Josh Shepard, Seth Siegel-Gardner and Morgan Weber, the brand’s collection of products will pay homage to the storied past of the distillery’s hometown and celebrate the traditions of the team’s many partners beyond the border.
Distilled from a plant growing wild in both forest and desert climates throughout Mexico and Western United States, sotol can be uniquely diverse and regionally specific. With each plant’s tasting notes wildly affected by the climate and region (similar to the way terroir influences wine), each sotol plant takes 10 to 15 years to mature and yields roughly one single bottle.
The Marfa Spirit Co.’s project aims to carry on the legacy of this spirit through complex sustainability practices to ensure the plant is around for years to come, and through long-standing relationships with sotoleros in Mexico. With sustainability in mind, the Marfa Spirit Co. has implemented harvesting practices alongside the agricultural teams at Texas A&M and Autonomous University of Chihuahua.