Posh a sacred beverage from the Highlands of Chiapas: production
30 minutes from San Cristóbal, there is a community called Cruzton. It belongs to the municipality of San Juan Chamula.
To reach this village, you will drive through beautiful views: we are in the geographical area called the Highlands of Chiapas since the height of this place exceeds 2,000 meters above sea level.
On the way, you can see different types of vegetation, predominantly pine trees. When aproaching the village, you can read signs that tell you that traditional alcohol is sold there.
The posh, is a brandy made from corn cane. Fermentation here is a traditional process and art that people who dedicate to it have learned from the tradition passed from the time of their grandparents’ grandparents. The corn cane is ground and mixed with panela, leaving it to rest in a very large container where fermentation takes place.
Weeks later, the fire is lit and huge pots that are connected with hoses are placed on fire. The hoses bring water from the river so that the mixture of high and low temperature produces vaporization. The settlement or fermentation travels through the tubes and gets stored, by drip system, in containers of 20 liters each. It should be emphasized that each producer has own area where he takes water from the river and pumps water to his factory to avoid contaminating it.
The alcohol percentage of the first distillation can reach up to 60% alcohol. “When you taste it freshly from the drip, the product is hot, it is strong but very rich, it is a spiritual pleasure when you taste it”.
Subsequent distillations lower the alcohol percentage to 40 degrees and up to 18% when mixed with fruit. You can find a variety of flavors of this drink: peach, jocote, nanchi, apple, cinnamon, lemon, and all the variety of fruits from the area.
“La mera mera de Cruzton”, “la original de Cruzton”, “la única de Cruzton”, are some of the characteristic names that indicate the places where this product is sold. Each of them give you samples so you can choose the posh you like. To avoid bad competition, the local authorities set the sale price, so everyone is on equal terms. “What matters is the flavor, your hand. If your client returns, it is because your posh is the best,” says Mariano, a nice local personality from Cruzton, who proudly showed us his factory and told us about his family tradition. “Now the corn cane is hardly used anymore, since it rots very fast, we are using bran. It lasts longer and it is cheaper for production” he tells us at the same time that he gives us a shot of his prime posh.
The posh encompasses many religious and social aspects, the old people of the place say that “the Posh is something that was created to make you feel good, it is a medicine.” To know more about its use and meaning, read the previous post
To understand the spirituality that this drink has for local people, we invite you to get to know the traditions more closely during the personalized tour with Experiencias Chiapas. Contact us!