• alcoholic beverages;
  • Chile;
  • cultural geography;
  • Peru;
  • trade policies


This article examines the geography of pisco, a South American brandy claimed as the national drink of both Peru and Chile. The historic tension between these two nations—based notably on the nineteenth-century War of the Pacific—is used as a backdrop to understanding the cultural and political contestation over the “ownership” of this beverage. Although both countries see exportation of pisco as a means of agricultural development, much of the animosity of this trade dispute is couched in cultural and historical terms. International trade policies, including the use of geographical indications (labels of geographical origin) for the purposes of trademarking, and the physical geography that makes pisco production possible are discussed.