Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Caporales & potos

On my recent trip to Peru I picked up two traditional beer vessels:

First up, a pair of caporales.   These large -aprox. 1 L capacity- glasses are the descendants of Inca keros. I would guess they came into use in the 19th C. and are still often used as the preferred serving vessel for chicha in the Peruvian Andes.   They are, unfortunately, getting harder to find as drinking preferences have moved to beer, and for chicha, the glass is replaced by cheaper plastic tumblers.  Nevertheless, at my request and moved by his own desire for some, Diego kept his eyes open for them, finally locating a bunch for sale in Lima's Mercado Central.  He bought several, and I brought home a matched pair.

Another type of chicha cup, this one use primarily on Peru's north coast, is the poto.   Made from a dried gourd, the poto is somewhat disposable.  They are used until even setting them out to dry in the sun won't fix them up, at which point they are tossed away.

When the song says "...chicha servidita en mi rico poto..."  this is what it's talking about.  

I bought this one in the market in the Lima neighborhood of Surquillo.

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