grapevine, the main input of Peru's most famous brandy-like elixir, can only be produced in the land of the Incas, and —for the first time— there is a geological research on the physical environment that ensures the growth of the crop used to make pisco.
Cereceda, the principal investigator of "Geology of Pisco
," said that the quality of this distillate originates in the land where the pisco grapevine grows.
The geomorphological study —contained in the aforementioned publication— focuses on the Ica Valley, the top pisco grape producer nationwide
(51.9% of plantations), and puts emphasis in the analysis of natural and climate factors of the geographical environment where the crop grows.
The Ica Valley is characterized by a perfect combination of rocks, sediments, relief, and soil (geology), which created the perfect soil for the birth of the Peruvian national drink.
"The quality of pisco originates in the land where pisco grapes are grown, as each grape contains flavors and aromas coming from its soil, thus bestowing it a unique personality," she told Andina news agency.
The geomorphological analysis started in 2018 by conducting fieldwork such as rock, sediment, and soil sampling.
The team used a drone and SPOT satellite imagery to study the valley's geoforms, north-south direction, and relief. Mineralogical, geochemical, and X-ray analysis were carried out.
The studies confirmed the valley's soil has a good texture. It is capable to retain humidity and carbonates, its pH levels are moderate to alkaline, and has high levels of potassium and calcium.
According to "Geology of Pisco," the essential elements in a pisco grapevine are five: Nitrogen (for its development), potassium (metabolism), and phosphorus (transport of substances and metabolism).
Also necessary are calcium (increases its vigor and assimilation of nutrients) and magnesium (promotes sugar formation and grape juice quality).
The good news is that they are all together in one place: the Ica Valley.