Tequila Vs Mezcal Whats The Difference
All tequilas are mezcals, but not all mezcals are tequilas.
While mezcals can be from any type of agave , tequila can come only from agave Tequilana or blue agave.
Theres also a geographical overlap between tequilas and mezcals. Both primarily come from Mexico but are produced in different regions. Mezcal is made from nine places: San Luis Potosi, Zacatecas, Puebla, Durango, Guerrero, Oaxaca, Guanajuato, Tamaulipas, and Michoacan.
Meanwhile, tequila can only be produced in Jalisco . Although some from limited municipalities in Nayarit, Michoacan, Tamaulipas, and Guanajuato are acceptable.
Tears Of Llorona Extra Anejo
Tears of Llorona Extra Anejo is a luxury brand from Master Tequilero, German Gonzalez. The unique trait of this tequila is its one-of-a-kind taste since it was aged in sherry, scotch, and cognac barrels. Bourbon drinkers will be familiar with some of the tastes.
However, the blend of dried fruit, caramel flan, and dark chocolate is not a common flavor found in everyday tequila. It also has a higher alcohol content than other aged añejos, at 86-proof.
Patron En Lalique Serie 2
- Price per bottle: $7,500
- Type of Tequila: Extra-Añejo
Patrons signature squat glass bottle has been an iconic symbol for the amazing tequila for a while, but the En Lalique comes with a lot more, including the price.
Made from 100% Weber blue agave plants, the Serie 2 tequila is the second coming from the mastery collaboration between the premier house of fine tequilas and the masters of French crystal.
The expensive tequila itself is different from other Patron tequilas. It rested in American and French oak barrels for seven years, then inside seasoned sherry barrels another year. Hence, its signature fruity tequila flavors with noticeable characters of sherry.
But if all that doesnt make the $7,500 price tag worth it, dont forget that there are only 299 hand-numbered Serie 2 bottles handcrafted in Alsace, France.
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Don Ramon Limited Edition Extra Anejo
Don Ramon Limited Edition Extra Anejo tequila is from Casa Don Ramon, which started operation in 1996. This particular bottle is a limited edition release, with only 5,000 in production.
These agave spirits are aged for three years inside used rum barrels. This method of aging tequila allowed the spirit to develop a smooth texture with a complex flavor. The Swarovski crystals-embellished bottles are specially-created to contain this Extra Añejo.
More And More Fine Wine Is Finding Its Way Into The Barrelhouses Of Jalisco If You Love Wine And Tequila These Bottles Are For You
Brad Japhe is an internationally published travel writer specializing in food, beverage and outdoor adventure. He has crossed the globe countless times in pursuit of the best there is to eat and drink, capturing the voices of the most interesting and innovative folks crafting it across all 50 states and 7 continents.
The explosive growth of tequila is nothing new. Over the past two decades, the sector has expanded at an average rate of 6.5% per year . Nevertheless, if you’ve scoured the shelves of your local liquor store lately, you might have noticed something quite novel in the tequila section. The trend has nothing to do with the blue weber agave used to make it and everything to do with the casks used to age it. More and more, fine wine is finding its way into the barrelhouses of Jalisco. What’s emerging from the oak is a subcategory poised to please oenophiles and tequila enthusiasts, alike.
Although producers are free in this part of the world to use any sort of cooperage they desire, by and large they’ve preferred ex-bourbon barrels. It’s a practice that has as much to do with availability as it does with taste: their whiskey-making neighbors to the north are legally required to use a barrel only once, meaning there’s a lot of leftover staves to send south.
Buy It: Calirosa Añejo Tequila, $90, via drizly.com
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Codigo 1530 Origen Extra Anejo
Codigo 1530 Origen Extra Añejo is a spirit aged for 72 months inside French oak cognac barrels. This tequila is one of the most refined tequilas on the market.
It has subtle flavors of Blue Agave, vanilla, spices, and sweet oak. These flavors are achieved by following traditional methods as a strict code, thus the name Codigo 1530. They stand by the code of only producing high-end tequila based on Mexican culture.
What Tequila Is Aged In Buffalo Trace Barrels
Expresiones del Corazon is a tequila aged in Buffalo Trace barrels. This bourbon is a multi-awarded spirit and perhaps the best bourbon in the world. Expresiones del Corazon strikes a perfect blend between tequila and Buffalo Trace making it a must-try among bourbon and tequila enthusiasts alike.
The good news is that Expresiones del Corazon not only offers tequila aged in Buffalo Trace barrels, it also sells tequila aged in Sazerac and Geroge T. Stagg whiskeys. All these whiskeys are produced in the same Buffalo Trace distillery.
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Lobos 1707 Tequila Extra Anejo
Lobos 1707 Extra Añejo is another celebrity-endorsed brand. Basketball superstar Lebron James is an investor of Lobos 1707 tequila. The NBA player appreciated the quality of these agave spirits the first time he tasted them.
The Extra Añejo has traditional tequila flavors where the smell of agave is very rich, accompanied by notes of citrus, tobacco, and sherry. Three years in oak barrels toned down the harshness and turned it into mellow alcohol that glides down the throat.
Jose Cuervo Reserva De La Familia Extra Anejo
The special Jose Cuervo Reserva De La Familia Extra Anejo tequila is not an ordinary blend. This tequila has a mix of a 30-year-old Extra Anejo tequila from pure agave grown from Hacienda Cuervo.
The blended tequila goes through oak aging for another three years before bottling. You will get a subtle taste of oak, cognac, vanilla, and floral flavors from nose to finish.
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Barrique De Ponciano Porfidio Tequila
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- Price per bottle: $2,200
- Type of Tequila: Extra-Añejo
With only 2,000 bottles of the Barrique De Ponciano Porfidio produced every year, its one of the most exclusive bottles of tequilas on the planet. So, its not surprising why you have to shell out thousands to get your hands on a single bottle.
The tequila itself is made of 100% blue agave plants, double distilled in French Limousin wood barrels for ten years. Its what gives it that deep, matured, delicate taste that will impress tequila enthusiasts.
Although the 17-inch tall, handcrafted glass bottle looks quite simple at first glance, part of the high price of this tequila is the bottle itself. The display alone screams expensive tequila with the 21-karat gold engraving.
Avin Reserva 44 Extra Aejo Tequila
This extra añejo tequila uses agaves which matured in Los Altos, Jalisco. After 72 hours roasting in brick ovens, the agaves are crushed, then fermented. Uniquely, after distillation, the spirit goes through Avións proprietary ultra-slow filtration method before it enters the barrel. Its aged a total of 44 months. 43 of those months are spent in large oak barrels, and the final month in specially selected petite barrels, which are rotated daily.
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Top 10 Most Expensive Tequila In The World
Theres expensive booze, and then theres lifestyle statements. The following collection of the most expensive tequila are definitely in the latter category. Many of these are limited in their production runs, and feature exotic and highly artistic bottles to house the fine tequila awaiting you within.
Without further ado, the 10 most expensive tequila bottles:
Grand Mayan Ultra Aejo Single Barrel Tequila
Grand Mayan “Ultra Añejo” Single Barrel Tequila is a work of unparalleled quality. The luxurious and traditional hand-crafted ceramic bottle, with platinum appliqué, holds an exquisite 100% Bleu Weber Agave tequila.Every drop is aged for 7 years in Ex-French Cognac and Ex-American Bourbon barrels, and Grand Mayan’s owner, Carlos Monsalve, only produces a very limited number of bottles each year.This is an absolutely exceptional tequila, and not one to be missed.
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La Adelita Extra Anejo
La Adelita Extra Añejo tequila is from La Adelita Single Estate tequila. This is one of the aged brands from Mexico with great agave-tasting liquors, whether this is a silver tequila, reposado, or Anejo. You get great value for your money with this aged spirit, though the price is not very high.
The color of this aged tequila variant is creamy and silky-looking in a golden amber shade. The flavor is complex where you taste white pepper, floral and fruity with touches of sassafras, apricot, and marzipan.
Eva Longoria’s New Premium Tequila Is Aged In French Oak Cognac Barrels
Brian Bowen Smith
You can make big money selling tequila though it seems to be significantly easier if “you” are a celebrity. George Clooney is the model: Remarkably, in 2018, he was the world’s highest-paid actor without appearing in any films thanks to the billion-dollar sale of the brand he co-founded, Casamigos. Since then, other big names have gotten on the tequila train like The Rock and Kendall Jenner .
This week, another celebrity has announced a new tequila brand: Eva Longoria. And as the daughter of Mexican-American parents, she’s touting the brand’s heritage as a major selling point.
Casa Del Sol is billed as an “ultra-premium spirits brand … made from the finest hand-selected 100-percent Blue Weber agave sourced from rich clay soil in the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico.” Beyond co-founder Longoria, the brand boasts two other key women members. Alejandra Pelayo “protégé and goddaughter” of Patron creator Francisco Alcaraz will serve as head of production, while Mariana Padilla daughter of Jalisco’s own Paco Padilla will serve as “Artesana Tequilera,” bringing “generations of rich culture and artistic heritage into Casa Del Sol’s identity and product development.”
“Legacy and authenticity are huge components of Casa Del Sol, and it was important for us to pay homage to the past through every facet of the brand,” Padilla stated.
Courtesy of Casa Del Sol
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What Makes Them The Most Expensive Tequilas
You can purchase tequilas like the Don Julio Real Tequila for around $400 or a bottle of Rey Sol Anejo Tequila for a hundred bucks or less. But then there are truly premium, highly expensive tequila bottles that will cost you thousands and even millions!
A bottle of tequila can cost a certain amount for many reasons:
El Tesoro Extra Anejo
El Tesoro is the favorite of many Mexicans who love traditional-tasting tequilas. They utilize the Tahona method in extracting the agave juice with all their variants. However, El Tesoro Extra Añejo is aged differently, lasting four to five years.
The longer aging ensures that the flavors acquired from ex-bourbon barrels are full. This Extra Anejo tequila has chocolate, toasted almonds, and coffee flavors blended with cooked agave. It is incredibly smooth too.
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Herradura Doble Barrel Reposado
Herradura was aged in barrels that previously stored King of Kentucky which added a lot of bourbon flavors to this Herradura while still maintaining its tequila flavor roots.
The Double Barrel from Herradura is incredibly smooth, rich in delicious vanilla notes with nice warmth coming at the end and lingering sweetness.
As opposed to other releases from this brand that tend to have more bite this one is more bourbon-esque and easier to drink making a great sip.
Double Barrel is aged for 11 months in oak barrels, then aged another month in a heavily charred oak barrel now you know why the name Double Barrel.
Both Herradura and King of Kentucky belong to the same parent company, Brown-Forman who also carries Jack Daniels and Woodford Reserve in its portfolio.
According to the laws that regulate production of bourbon whiskey the spirit must be aged for a minimum of two years in brand new barrels which are made of white oak and have been charred on the inside.
Once the whiskey is bottled the casks must be disposed creating a secondary market for used bourbon barrels that are used in a zillion different ways. Now you can find a wide range of products like soy sauce, coffee, tea or confectionary delights matured in these vessels.
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Jose Cuervo 250 Aniversario
- Price per bottle: $2,400
- Type of Tequila: Extra-Añejo
This ultra-aged spirit is both intense in looks and flavor that will leave you charmed with its warmth and modesty, although you can never say the price is modest at all.
It has every making of premium, most expensive tequilas. It starts from using single crop, mature agave plants aged in American and French oak barrels. Then its blended with tequilas from the legendary demijohns to give it the signature chocolate and vanilla notes followed by a butterscotch aftertaste.
Finally, Jose Cuervo adds another year of aging in Spanish imported sherry barrels for a smoother, creamier ultra-aged tequila different from those exclusively aged in oak.
But part of this Extra-Añejos high price tag is the sleek hand-blown crystal bottle that makes the tequila looks like designer perfume.
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Aging Tequila In Bourbon Barrels
Most tequila are blancos or silver, that type of tequila is unaged, that means that it never entered in contact with a barrel. But once a tequila aged for more than 60 days it becomes a reposado or an extra añejo if it matures for more than three years.
|Type of Tequila|
|Extra Añejo||3 or more years|
Accrding to the CRT tequila must be aged in oak barrels for the afromentioned lengths but doesn´t specify if the barrels have to be new or used. This open a window of opportunity for distillers to play with different types of barrels achieving varying flavor profiles. Some producers such as Patron has gone as far as aging in barrels that previously stored Bordeaux wine.
Clase Azul 15th Anniversary Edition
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- Price per bottle: $30,000
- Type of Tequila: Extra-Añejo
Clase Azul is already known for its artisanal crystal decanters and expensive tequilas, but its most prized offering yet is a $30,000 Clase Azul Extra Anejo Anniversary Edition, 15 years after its debut in 1997.
The limited-edition fine tequila remains the most expensive and exclusive selection from the brand since they only released a limited run of only fifteen bottles to celebrate 15 years in business.
The ultra-matured reserve tequila is a blend of two reserves. One was aged in Spanish barrels for 15 years and another aged for 11 years in Productos Finos de Agave Distillery. The result is an indulgent drink inside a real work of art, a bottle made of ceramic with 24-karat gold decorations, among other artistic flourishes.
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Villa Lobos Extra Aejo Tequila
The agave used in this tequila brand is sourced entirely from the Camarena family plantations in Los Altos, Jalisco. The agaves cook for 36 hours before they are crushed and placed in open-fermentation vats for 4-5 days. After double-distillation, the tequila spends over 4 years in American oak barrels, plus another 6 months in steel tanks to mellow the spirits and help the flavors marry. When the Villa Lobos brand first launched it was originally made to satiate the taste of Englands growing taste for agave spirits, but it has since been released in the United States.
To discover even more types of Extra Añejo Tequila, head over to Distiller.com.
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Aging Of Tequila And The Characteristics
The flavor of tequila is largely affected by how long it sets in barrels for aging. If the tequila is aged for a longer time period, the final product results in relatively more color and tannins. To put it simply, flavor is directly proportional to the time period of ageing.
When it comes to reposado tequila, its yellowish color depicts that it is aged for less than a year.
Similarly, we can infer that the silver tequila is not aged at all. Just like that, Anejo being darker in color than reposado, is aged more than a year.
The aging process also influences the flavor of tequila. The more the tequila is aged, the more it gets smoother with a lesser alcohol taste. And, of course, the flavor can be dominated by additives too.
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Gran Centenario Leyenda Extra Aejo
Gran Centenario Leyenda is aged for four years in new American oak. The tequila is then blended with older tequila reserves before bottling. This version replaced the former Leyenda bottling from Gran Centenario which used French Limousin oak in the maturation process a fine tequila which has since been discontinued.
Tears Of Llorona Extra Aejo Tequila
Germán González puts his tears and his heart into a distinctive, etched bottle with the classic Llorona legend on the back. Extra-mature agaves are selected and a proprietary yeast strain is used for a slow fermentation. Oak barrels which aged Scotch whisky, sherry and cognac are used for maturation, which takes around five years. While most tequila is aged at 80 proof, this is bottled at 86 proof. The release will always be limited, according to González.
Tears of Llorona Extra Añejo Tequila / Photo Credit: Tears of Llorona
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