Tequila Anejo
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Best Añejo and Extra Añejo Tequila

There are well over 1500 different tequilas currently being produced in Mexico. Since our last añejo tasting, 100% blue agave tequila’s popularity has exploded with new brands, the ever-increasing awareness of premium reposados and añejos, and the development of a "new" expression of extra añejo.

All tequilas start out as Blanco, with portions set aside for aging. Añejo must be barreled in wood for at least one year, up to three years. Each distillery has its own preference for the type of barrel used in aging – made mostly from French oak or white oak. The newest classification, Extra-Añejo, are aged for three years or more. Añejo and Extra Añejo tequilas take time to produce, so they are best enjoyed straight up and sipped slowly.

 

The Fifty Best Añejo Tequila Tasting

 

The Tasting:
The Fifty Best held a “blind” tasting of 11 premium añejo and extra añejo tequilas with 17 members of our spirits judging panel. Strict tasting rules were applied. The order of service was established beforehand by lottery. Each of the tequilas were poured into fresh glasses from new sealed bottles, and served at slightly above room temperature. Only ice water and neutral unsalted chips and crackers were available to cleanse the palate.

The judges wrote down their impressions of each product on score sheets. The scoring was done on a 5-point system, with 5 as the best. Double-Gold, Gold and Silver medals are awarded according to a set range of final point scores received from the judges. There were no bronze medals awarded for this tasting. The tasting notes that follow are summaries of the judges’ opinions, with all replicated commentary eliminated.

The tasting notes that follow are summaries of the judges’ opinions, with all replicated commentary eliminated. The municipalities of origin are identified for each brand.

 

DOUBLE-GOLD MEDAL WINNERS

Loma Azul Gran Reserva Añejo
(Arandas, Altos Sur)

Nose: Creamy, butter, caramel, honey, vanilla, toasted marshmallow, citrus, melon, agave, dried herbs, floral.
Palate: Brown sugar, honey, buttery, caramel, creamy, roasted melon, dried fruit, tropical fruit, lemon peel, fried plantain, agave, carnation, floral, black pepper, oaky, smoke, well rounded, well balanced, superb.
Finish: Almond, toasted corn, raisins, spicy, soft, rich.

Double Gold Medal
Double Gold medal



Loma Azul Gran Reserva Añejo Tequila


Don Nacho Extra Premium Añejo Tequila



Don Nacho Extra Premium Añejo
(San Ignacio Cerro Gordo, Los Altos)

Nose: Toffee, caramel, buttery, butterscotch, molasses, brown sugar, honey, mesquite honey, vanilla, marshmallow, apple, lemon, papaya, melon, subtle agave, floral, jalapeño jelly.
Palate: Silky toffee, caramel, taffy, cream soda, butter, cream, honey, molasses, agave, lemon, dried cherry, raisins, light mint, dried herbs, almond, coffee bean, spice, cinnamon, pepper, oak, cedar, soft, warm and friendly.
Finish: Vanilla, creamy, buttery, white sugar, agave, almond, bitter almond, licorice, coffee, like cognac, smoke, oak, woody, silky.

Double Gold Medal
Double Gold medal



Mi Rancho Añejo
(Jamay, Jalisco)

Nose: Toffee, chocolate, caramel, cream, brown sugar, vanilla, yellow cake, honeydew, green apple, papaya, berries, dried fruit, green agave (uncooked), floral, tobacco leaf, rosemary, earthy.
Palate: Butterscotch, toffee, caramel, creamy, sweet butter, vanilla, honey, sweet agave, baked apple, apple, banana, dried fruit, dried papaya, raisins, herbal, mint, almond, cinnamon, spice, Christmas spice, mocha, coffee, mineral, earthy, wood, smooth, well-balanced, very distinctive.
Finish: Toffee, honey crisp, agave, raisins, dried fruit, mint, cinnamon, clove, anise, spicy, tobacco, woody, oaky, very smooth, rich.


Double Gold Medal
Double Gold medal



Mi Rancho Añejo Tequila


Alacrán A.T.A Cristal Añejo Cristalino Tequila



GOLD MEDAL WINNERS

Alacrán A.T.A Cristal Añejo Cristalino
(Jesús María, Los Altos, Jalisco)

Nose: Toffee, butterscotch, caramel, nougat, creamy, vanilla, honey, agave, lemon, citrus, honeydew, melon, floral, leafy green, grass, mint, fennel, spearmint, cinnamon, whole jalapeño, peppercorn, gunpowder, wood, earthy, clean.
Palate: Vanilla, chocolate, honey, fresh-cut apple, pineapple, melon, lime, roasted agave, dried fruit, almond, spearmint, mint, spices, pepper, brine, faint smoke, deep notes of wood, oak, pine, smooth, easy.
Finish: Toffee, caramel, cocoa, café-au-lait, creamy, honey, floral, herbal, lime zest, mint, cinnamon, clove, oak, smoke, flavorful, smooth, silky, lingers nicely.

Gold Medal
Gold medal



Hotel California Añejo
(Zapotlanejo)

Nose: Butterscotch, caramel, sweet cream, buttery, molasses, sugarcane, honey, vanilla, tropical fruit, rich agave, melon, citrus, orange blossom, buttered popcorn, Brazil nut, macadamia, nutty, ash, dusty, smoke, oak.
Palate: Butterscotch, caramel, cream, honey, vanilla, buttered, café-au-lait, Ethiopian coffee, green apple, lime, dried fruit, agave, bell pepper, eucalyptus, light honeyed herb, herbs, spice, peppery, brine, wood.
Finish: Caramel, chocolate, pineapple, tarragon, herbs, spice, coffee, brine, sea salt, earthy, smoke, oak, well-balanced, smooth, refreshing.

Gold Medal
Gold medal



Hotel California Añejo Tequila


Campeón Añejo Tequila



Campeón Añejo
(East Highlands, Jalisco)

Nose: Melon, pear, green apple, banana, citrus, lemon zest, lime zest, sour peel, agave, raisin, floral, herbal, mint, black pepper, coffee, cigar ash, smoky, faint oak, woody, aromatic.
Palate: Molasses, cream, vanilla, honey, tart raw pineapple, citrus, lemon, raisin, cocoa , dry cereal, eucalyptus, herbs, spearmint, spicy, pepper, tobacco, cigar box, earthy, mineral, smooth, silky.
Finish: Toffee, chocolate, creamy, honey, corn cereal, agave, lime pith, herbal, spicy, rum-like, smooth.

Gold Medal
Gold medal



Herradura Añejo
(Amatitán, Lowlands)

Nose: Vanilla, honey, green apple, citrus, lemon, calvados, fig, dried fruit, agave, bell pepper, green pepper, spearmint, bubblegum, cola, musty, earthiness, smoke, pine, woody, oak.
Palate: Toffee, nougat, vanilla, honey, pineapple, agave, peach pits, spearmint, mint, herbs, nutty, toasted almond, spice, peppery, white pepper, coffee, tobacco, leather, tannins, forest floor, mineral, smoke, woody, oak, pine, well balanced.
Finish: Dark raisins, chocolate, cream soda, corn puffs, herbs, spice, tobacco, smoke, smooth, woody, well-balanced.

Gold Medal
Gold medal



Herradura Añejo Tequila


Mar Azul Añejo Tequila


SILVER MEDAL WINNERS

Mar Azul Añejo
(Amatitán, Lowlands)

Nose: Butterscotch, caramel, vanilla ice cream, light brown sugar, honey, maple, sweet agave, corn, melon, papaya, apple, citrus, lemon, sweet raisins, faint smoke, light oak, light, clean.
Palate: Butterscotch, creamy, burnt caramel, vanilla, honey, melon, citrus, mandarin, lime, cider, agave, corn, almond, coffee, sharp tangy herbal, spice, black pepper, light tobacco, very earthy, wood, oak.
Finish: Honey, agave, citrus, pineapple, raisins, floral, spicy, black pepper, faint tobacco, brine, sweet apple smoke, woody, oak.

Silver Medal
Silver medal



Suavecito Añejo
(Tlajomulco de Zúñiga, Jalisco)

Nose: Toffee, praline, buttery, creamy, vanilla, molasses, honey, green apple, lemon, herbal, oak, heavy wood, bourbon barrel, subtle smoke, earth.
Palate: Treacle, sugarcane, brown sugar, powdered sugar, honey, vanilla, agave, mint, anise, herbal tea, ginger tea, well-balanced.
Finish: Butterscotch, caramel, confectioner’s sugar, brown sugar, honey, eggnog, nutmeg, sweet, creamy soft, smooth.

Silver Medal
Silver medal



Suavecito Añejo Tequila

 

EXTRA AÑEJO TEQUILA:


GOLD MEDAL WINNER

Alacrán XA Extra Añejo
(Los Altos, Jalisco)

Nose: Caramel, cream soda, brown sugar, honey, agave honey, burnt sugar, burnt apples, tropical fruit, citrus, raisins, agave, mint, butternut, bourbon barrel, woody, oak, aromatic.
Palate: Butterscotch, toffee, caramel, molasses, cane sugar, brown sugar, honey, vanilla, melon, honeydew, apple, banana, raisins, roasted agave, anise, mint, fruity sherry, Speyside scotch, tobacco, white pepper, earthy, light smoke, wood, cedar, old oak, smooth, rich.
Finish: Caramel, creamy, vanilla, honey, apple, dates, raisins, canella, mint, fennel, bitter almond, spiced, smoke, smooth.

Gold Medal
Gold medal



Alacrán XA Extra Añejo Tequila


SILVER MEDAL WINNER

Mar Azul Extra Añejo
(Amatitán, Lowlands)

Nose: Butterscotch, caramel, brown sugar, vanilla, honey, Coca-Cola, maple, agave, lychee, apples, nori, green dried leaves, nutmeg, rum, bourbon barrel, roasted wood, sweet oak.
Palate: Butterscotch, caramel, vanilla, honey, light fruit, berries, raisins, green apple, floral, grass, herbal, spice, cinnamon, hot pepper, pepper, tobacco, earthy, woody, heavy wood, pine, oak.
Finish: Pineapple, honey, hint of maple, roasted cinnamon, herb, mint, fennel, spice, pepper, tobacco, wet stone, sweet cedar, smooth.


Silver Medal
Silver medal



Mar Azul Extra Añejo Tequila

 

 

 

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