When we first reviewed Avion Reposado Tequila, we knew it was more than the just the hype it was getting for being on HBO’s Entourage. That show was severely suspect; however, Avion Tequila is certainly not. Both smooth and complex, the Avion Reposado was a flat out stud. Now, it seems that the Avion Silver Tequila has cleaned up winning 5 awards at the San Francisco World Spirit Competition including a Double Gold Medal, Best Tequila and the prestigious Best White Spirit. Crushing the competition at the world’s most prestigious spirit competition will solidify Avion as one of the best tequila’s in the world, period.
When Avion was unknown, the marketing campaign behind this tequila put in prime time on one of HBO’s most popular shows. Now that it has won so many awards, expect the marketing campaign to step on the gas full throttle. Avion tequila has arrived as a main stream tequila, not only proving to be one of the best, but soon to be one of the best sellers. We can’t wait to get our hands on the silver and the anejo.
Just like vodka, gin and whiskey, tequila—no matter whether it’s sipped neat or mixed in a Margarita—has become a year-round favorite. A bottle of it is also a thoughtful holiday present. To help you out, we asked expert Julio Bermejo, owner of San Francisco institution Tommy’s Mexican Restaurant, for his spirited gift suggestions. Blanco:
When it comes to blanco, Bermejo likes 7 Leguas ($40), which is family-owned and crafted in the highlands of Jalisco using both traditional and modern techniques. The lowland Fortaleza Blanco ($48) is another excellent choice. “It’s the last tequila made by hand in the valley,” he says.
Bermejo calls the highland Espolòn Reposado ($25) “a tremendous value for the money.” It’s aged for approximately six months in American-oak barrels. If you can find it, Chinaco Reposado ($53) is also a lovely gift. It’s produced by the only tequila distillery in the state of Tamaulipas.
The highland El Tesoro Añejo ($60) is a perfect present. It’s made with the most old-school of methods and is aged for two to three years in former bourbon casks. El Jimador Añejo($30), from the lowlands, is a good alternative. It’s “very wood-driven and a great value,” Bermejo says.
The oldest tequilas are awarded this prized distinction. If you’re looking for something special, give the highland Don Julio Real ($350), which is matured for as long as five years, or the lowlands’ “spicy and bold” Partida Elegante ($350), which, according to Bermejo, lives up to its name.
We’ve already tasted the Herradura Anejo Tequila multiple times and it’s simply of the best tequilas on the market, complex and exquisite. The Herradura Blanco is quite the same when compared to other silver and blanco tequilas. Smooth, refreshing and flavorful, the Herradua Silver Tequila is a better tequila than Patron, but for about half the price. We highly recommend all Herradura tequilas. This smooth, clean tequila is aged for 45 days to add a hint of color and oak to its tangy citrus character, which brings more agave flavor and unparalleled pleasure to a margarita.
Color: Light straw
Aroma: Green and cooked agave with herbal and slightly woody notes
Taste: Agave, woody notes and slightly citric flavor
We bring you more and more cocktails for every occasion. This Halloween, try the Herradura Tequila Pumpkin Punch! We love Herradura straight, but in a classic cocktail like for the fall season, you can’t miss. Happy Halloween! And if guests ask for more… you can always use the recipe during Thanksgiving! Pumpkins are in season for a while and so are the cocktails!
· 2 oz Herradura Silver
· 1 ½ oz Pumpkin Puree (see recipe below)
· 2 oz freshly squeezed orange juice
· 1/3 oz maple syrup
1. Combine all ingredients into a Boston shaker
2. Shake and strain into a glass filled with cubed ice
3. Garnish with an orange slice lightly dusted with cinnamon powder
A Complex Three Time Double Gold Medal Winning Tequila
By Matt Goldstein & Amy K. Haight
Made with 100% blue agave, Herradura is considered the only 100% hacienda made tequila in the world. The Herradura Anejo Tequila is barreled for two years making it an exceptionally refined tequila. Since 1962, Herradura has been proud to offer this delicious aged tequila. Barrelling for two years in oak is twice as long as suggested by the category standards. The Herradura Anejo Tequila is smooth with a heavy oak flavor and no sour aftertaste. This anejo is refined and complex with the flavor of a whiskey, an attribute only found in the most aged exquisite tequilas. We highly recommend the Herradura Anejo. See below for more facts, tasting notes and awards.
Color: Dark amber
Aroma: Intense cooked agave and spice, toasted oak and nutty notes
Taste: Very smooth with cooked agave and dried fruit
Finish: Smooth, creamy finish
Age: 2 years
Alcohol Content: 40%
HERRADURA AÑEJO TEQUILA
2010 The SIP Awards Platinum Award
2010 San Francisco World Spirits Competition Silver Medal Award
2009 San Francisco World Spirits Competition Silver Medal Award
2008 San Francisco World Spirits Competition Silver Medal Award
2008 International Wine and Spirits Competition Bronze
2007 San Francisco World Spirits Competition Double Gold Medal Award
2007 Spirits of Mexico Gold Medal Awards
2006 San Francisco World Spirits Competition Gold Medal Award
2006 International Wine and Spirits Competition Gold Medal Award
2001 San Francisco World Spirits Competition Double Gold Medal Award
2000 San Francisco World Spirits Competition Double Gold Medal Award
This past weekend in Vegas, we took the time out to try some spirits that don’t have much access to on the East Coast and specifically in Philadelphia. While at the Pink Taco at the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas, we saw Avion Reposado on the menu, a sight never seen to us before. Aged 6 months, with a roasted agave presence, the oak aroma is elegant and well balanced. This is a solid tequila both smooth and complex. We would definitely drink it again. Although there is a lot of hype with Avion Tequila being the subject of multiple episodes on HBO’s Entourage, the tequila speaks for itself. Try it and let us know what you think.
About Avion Tequila:
Tequila Avión is about a journey to create a new standard in taste and quality – Taste Elevated. An entrepreneurial spirit and a devotion to excellence that has provided us with the much talked about Tequila Avión Silver, Reposado, and Anejo.
Tequila Avion is love. The obsession to produce the world’s smoothest tequila begins high in the hills of Jalisco, 7000 feet above sea level, where the finest handpicked Blue Weber Agave slow roasts in brick ovens to bring out an unparalleled blend of natural flavors and aromas.
But before it’s bottled, Tequila Avión is loved a little longer. Ten times longer than other tequilas to be exact. The proprietary Ultra Slow Filtration process filters Tequila Avión into the smoothest Silver, Reposado and Añejo varietals in the world.
The result is a flavor profile and smoothness loved by everyone who tastes, including the judges at the 2011 San Francisco World Spirits Competition who honored Avion with Double Gold distinction.
Whether you sip it, mix it or enjoy it straight up, Tequila Avion loves everything and everyone.
Having its origins dating back to the Maya through the Spanish Conquistadors and Mezcal, Tequila’s resurgence in recent years is due to an explosion in the premium tequila market. From Patron to Don Julio and Cabo Wabo, the $50 tequila bottle seems to be arriving on every liquor shelf in the country. From Blanco’s, to Reposado’s and darker Anejo’s, tequila has earned its place among the world’s finest drinks. Read below for a history and timeline of this classic spirit.
Legend has it that before the Hispanic era, in what is now known as Jalisco, Mexico, a group of Indians were looking for shelter from a storm and hid in an area full of Blue Agave. By the hand of the Mayan God Mayahuel, a bolt of lightning hit the maguey bush and it began burning. When Tlaloc the Rain God finally put out the fire, the aroma coming from the maguey bush was very enticing. When one Indian tasted the plant, he passed it around to the others and the Agave plant and tequila became one of the most important treasures to the tribes of pre-Hispanic Mexico. The sweet nector of the agave is distilled into what is now modern day tequila. The most premium tequila’s are made with 100% blue agave and aged in oak barrels.
1600: Tequila is massed produced for the first time.
1758: Jose Cuervo buys a massive farmland to cultivate the blue agave plant, the origins of tequila.
1800: Tequila is aged in barrels for the first time, giving it flavor, complexity and creating a the true character of what tequila is to become.
1873: Tequila is first exported to the U.S. in El Paso Texas and spreads quickly.
1880: Tequila spreads throughout America through the newly built railroads.
1910: During the Mexican Revolution, Tequila becomes the symbol of national pride.
1935: The Margarita is born in Mexico and changes the cocktail world forever.
1940: Tequila rises in popularity in the United States as WWII halts European exports.
1968: The Olympic Games in Mexico City bring Tequila international notoriety and sales increase for decades.
1975: 1800 Reposado is the first premium tequila exported to the United States.
1987: Don Julio launches a line of premium tequilas.
2005: 1800 Introduces a the first ever tequila portfolio of Silver, Reposado and Anejo
2006: Mexico passes a law requiring all Tequila to be bottled inside of Mexico to guarantee its’ quality.
2008: Patron silver is the favored shot of premium liquors in bars across the United States.
Made with 100% Blue Agave, the 1800 Tequila is named after the year in which tequila was aged in wood for the very first time, 1800. When released in 1975, 1800 Reposado became the first premium tequila. Reposado tequila’s are medium aged tequila’s, usually in American Oak barrels for 2-4 months which gives it a light brown color and sweet flavor. Silver tequila’s are usually age about a month while the more premium Anejo Tequila’s are aged between 1-2 years. While Silver’s seem to be the most popular tequila’s these days from the Patron trend, the Reposado’s and Anejo’s are what makes a unique, complex and full of flavor perfect for sipping neat. The 1800 Reposado Tequila, while solid, is just that. It’s not too bad but it’s not great either. While we wouldn’t turn it down if offered, there are probably better Reposado’s for the price.
The 1800 Reposado Tequila Tasting Notes:
The 1800 has a sweet scent with a sweet syrupy flavor. It’s smooth but lacks bite and complexity. There is a good burn with an oak flavor and sweet, slightly dry finish.
Made from 100% estate grown blue agave, Milagro tequila is made in the old world style, slow roasting the Agave pina’s in clay ovens. Milagro Reposado is a small batch, triple distilled tequila and the slow roasted pina’s allows for a more natural flavor. This reposado is aged for 6 months in oak barrels, 4 months longer than most reposados. This is a very solid and complex reposado.
Milagro Reposado Tequila Tasting Notes:
Scent of citrus, the taste is smooth, sweet and tangy with a thin but good and complex mouth feel. Good flavors of oak and sweet flavors of agave. Highly recommended.
Originating in 1996 by Sammy Hagar in Guadalajara Mexico, Sammy partnered with a tequila-making family with over 80 years of experience. Today, the agave used to make Cabo Wabo Tequila is grown, cultivated and harvested by this same family. Cabo Wabo is made from 100% Blue Agave and the Cabo Wabo Anejo is matured in American oak barrels for 14 months. The color and unique flavor come from the oak barrel. Production begins with Weber’s Blue Agave plants grown in Jalisco, Mexico, and plants are harvested after they achieve an ideal sugar/acid balance, in about 8 to 10 years. At the distillery, the piñas are slowly roasted in traditional ovens known as hornos for a period of 24 hours. Once the piñas cool, they are crushed and juiced and then fermented in steel tanks. The tequila is then double distilled in traditional pot stills called alambiques and then aged in barrels.
Cabo Wabo Anejo Tasting Notes
The Cabo Wabo Anejo is light gold in color with the scent of citrus. With a thin and light refreshing scent, the tequila is very smooth. The thin light flavor and dry aftertaste are good but this anejo lacks a bit of flavor. With a rich mouth feel and slight bite the Cabo Wabo gets better the more you sip. This is a good tequila, not great.
The Cabo Wabo Margarita: The Caborita
2 oz. Cabo Wabo Reposado Tequila
2 oz. Lime Juice, freshly squeezed
1 oz. Triple Sec
Combine the ingredients in a shaker half filled with ice. Shake well. Strain into salt-rimmed martini glass.
The Cabo Wabo Bloody Mary: The Bloody Maria
2-1/2 oz. Cabo Wabo Blanco Tequila
1/2 oz. Lemon Juice
5 oz. Tomato Juice
Dash Tabasco® Sauce
1 Lime Wedge
1 Celery Stalk
1/8 tsp. Celery Salt
1/8 tsp. Pepper
Stir well over ice cubes in a Collins glass, garnish with a celery stalk (can also be prepared in a shaker and poured without ice into a Collins glass).