Agave Spirits Workshop

Course Overview

One of the largest gains in global beverage alcohol consumption in recent years has been in the agave spirits category. With significant growth projected for the next half-decade, this new development in consumer tastes comes with huge potential for distillers looking to stay ahead of the curve.

In our hands-on, two-day workshop, we’ll explore the ancient agave plant, examining the differences between tequila, mezcal, and other agave-based spirits. From harvest to cooking, pressing, and distillation, we’ll cover the nuanced styles, production techniques, and distilling methods for preparing the agave plant, which yields such stunning and complex spirits. You will explore the various spirits from all sizes, from small craft distilleries to large scale production. Students will also get to practice hands-on distilling of an agave spirit in our hand-made Filipino still, as well as experience source material tasting, category and sensory training, and more. Join us as we explore one of the most regulated distillates in the world.

Who this class is for

Whether you’re a seasoned tequila, mezcal, or agave spirit distiller or a newbie to the business, this class is for anyone who has or is planning to open and/or operate a distillery; production team members (blenders); and anyone else interested in refining their knowledge of agave spirits.

Your Instructors

This course is taught by Oscar Orozco, Production Manager at Tequila Tapatío.

Oscar, raised amidst Jalisco’s agave plants, developed a profound love for tequila. Studying chemical engineering, he engaged in diverse projects, including crafting beer and optimizing tequila distillation. Returning to his hometown, he worked at Don Julio distillery, excelling in quality control, Primavera distillery, and cask warehouses. As Tequila Tapatio’s production manager, he oversees the entire process at La Alteña distillery. Oscar holds a tequila technician title from Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara, underwent sensorial training at CIATEJ, and completed a master’s degree in tequila process. Actively involved in research on barrels, tequila maturation, agave juice fermentation, he aims to publish findings soon.

What You’ll Learn

In addition to gaining valuable insights on the world of agave spirits, we’ll take an in-depth look at:

  • The History of Agave Spirits
  • A discourse about the plant and its meaning throughout history
  • The different species of Agave according to region: Tequilana, Angustifolia, Americana, Karwinskii, Durangensis, Inaequidens, Maximilliana, Potatorum, Salmiana
  • Agave beverages and their legal classifications: Tequila, Mezcal, Raicilla, Bacanora, Pulque, Aguamiel, Henequen, Sotol
  • Growing agave and the regional impact
  • Harvesting
  • Roasting/Cooking: Oven, Pit, Diffuser
  • Fermenting
  • Distilling
  • Different stills and ways to distill agave spirits
  • Aging
  • Barrels & aging
  • Additives & Cristalinos
  • Blending
  • Filtration and post-distillation processes
  • Source material tasting
  • Quality assurance and control
  • Sensory training on various types of agave spirits
  • Hands-on distilling of agave spirits

Get your class on

Tuition includes all class materials; breakfast, lunch, and refreshments; and transportation between our contracted hotel and our campus. $2,195

**Early Bird Registration covers your stay at our contracted hotel from Day 1 to the last day of class. The Early Bird deadline is 3 weeks before the first day of class.


About Moonshine University

Founded in 2012, Moonshine University is the nation’s premier educational distillery. Our facility was created from the ground up to teach new distillers how to get started in the industry, and to teach professional team members how to elevate key aspects of their craft and boost sales. Combining classroom instruction with practical, hands-on learning and sensory training, Moonshine University attracts people from all over the world, ensuring every attendee leaves with a complete and comprehensive education and skill set applicable to a variety of spirits and industry related areas.

In 2013, The Kentucky Distillers’ Association made Moonshine University their exclusive education provider. With the support of some of the industry’s leading institutions and distilleries, you can be sure that taking a class at Moonshine University will be worth the investment.

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