It is harvested at between 14-16 years depending on the area where it grows. Due to the agave's dense core and low water content, Mezcal made from Madrecuishe typically has an earthy tone. This is picked up during the cooking; the piña is long and thin, increasing the surface area for the roasting process.
QQRQ's Madrecuishe is made by Maestro Mezcalero Natalio Vazquez, at his palenque in El Palmar, from wild and semi-wild plantations in Sitio El Palmar, San Luis Amatlán, and Miahuatlán. Semi-wild means that wild seeds are sowed in community or private fields and then left to grow as they would in the wild. True wild agaves are increasingly scarce and Symonds feels replanting wild seeds represents a more sustainable way to enjoy these increasingly rare types of agave. To this end QQRQ re-sow ten times as many seeds as agave plants harvested for their Mezcals.
Intense yet bright aromas of brine, dusky earth and a little vanilla lead to a gentle background of smoke in the mouth, with layers of zesty citrus fruits, flowers and roasted agave fibre. It finishes silky smooth, with a dried-herb-like quality and a clean mineral edge.