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@Victor
Victor started a discussion

Among spirits, I enjoy Tequila second only to whisky. Why might that be? I like umami flavours. I perceive umami flavours from grains. I also perceive umami flavours from agave. The meaty, the earthy, and the vegetal appeal to me in spirits. I like a lot of tequilas, and I like a lot of other agave spirits, such as mezcals, raicillas, sotols, bacanoras, etc. What has been your experience with tequila and other agave spirits?

19 days ago

16 replies

@OdysseusUnbound

I don’t have a ton of experience with tequila/mezcal/sotol but I have enjoyed the good stuff when it has been offered. A friend of mine goes (or went, pre-Covid) to Central America on a regular basis for business and always brings back interesting stuff. I couldn’t tell you the name of the different spirits, but there have been some Blanco tequilas which have been quite tasty, given that they are basically unaged.

19 days ago 2Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor replied

Today is tequila day for me. Today I am tasting all of my open bottles of tequila:

1) Don Julio Anejo

2) Casa Noble Anejo

3) Don Julio 1942; this is a 2.5 years aged lightly-wooded anejo tequila

4) Exotico Reposado, a Luxco Product, now owned by MGPI. Yes, yes, yes! After waiting three years of open bottle air time this underperforming bottle has finally become a fully enjoyable sipper. I was very unhappy for those first three years because my bottle tasted nowhere near as good as the sample I had tasted at the store which led me to buy the bottle.

5) Jose Cuervo Reserva de la Familia Extra-Anejo. C'est la creme de la creme

6) El Tesoro de Don Felipe Anejo

7) Tanteo Jalapeno Infused Blanco. This usually should be the last tequila tasted in the same way that Ardbeg Corryvreckan usually should be the last malt tasted. Buying this bottle of Tanteo Jalapeno Infused Tequila was a great move. With it I got: 1) a conversation piece, 2) a remarkably interesting sipper, and 3) a heavy-weight cocktail champion. Eyeballs pop out of sockets when people taste this. It was drinking a cocktail made with this at a resort on vacation which sold this to me

Tequila and Irish whiskey have for me the similarity in both being quietly enjoyable easy drinkers. I tend to drink through bottles of tequila and Irish whiskey without noticing that I am consuming them, and then being surprised that my stocks of each of these tend to always be running low

In my first several years of tequila experience I tended, I think, like most whisky drinkers, to be heavily partial to the longer wood-aged categories of tequila, viz. the anejos and the extra-anejos. I've grown over time to increase my enjoyment and appreciation of the agave flavours, per se, as do the Mexicans. Now I love a good Blanco very much, though I fully understand that the mood to want the unaged tequila is a different mood than the mood to look forward to a wood-influenced tequila

Salud!

19 days ago 4Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC replied

I'm much in a similar place as @OdysseusUnbound, minus the central American travelling mate that is. What I've had I've really enjoyed but I'm still yet to try any anejos.

Out of Blanco and Reposado I'd say the little bit of cask influence makes for a more rounded experience and is more quaffable. I do quite like the vegetal aspect of the blanco but feel it's a taste I need to get more acquainted with. I've also been impressed with the Mezcals I've had.

Corralejo and Fortaleza Repasados are on my wish list as is a good anejo like the Jose Cuervo Reserve De La Familia.

My main gripe though is that bottling strengths can often be 38% which is very off-putting as a spirit sipper, especially for premium bottles.

19 days ago 3Who liked this?

@cricklewood
cricklewood replied

@Victor reading your affinity for these savoury/vegetal flavours it's no wonder that Rum Agricole is in your top 5 as well.

I avoided Tequila at first in my renewed spirits journey because of the abuses of youth (There was a brand called Tequila Bang Bang...enough said). I once again have my brother to thank for bringing me into the fold, through him I was able to try brands like Don Julio, Cuervo 1800, Corralejo. I also had friends who would regularly travel to Mexico and so I was then able to try local and less known brands. I've slowly been learning more about Mezcal and Sotols over the last couple of years too, It's as complex of an industry as any other spirit, also just as colonized as rum.

I love trying barrel rested or aged versions, although I do find that they sometimes lose a little something in the process.

@RianC the minimum abv of 38% is a total killer, so his 40%abv in many ways, there's a growing number of higher proof Tequila offerings but they are still few and far between. Mezcal fares better in that regard as many products are offered at higher proofs and the texture is much better for it.

19 days ago 4Who liked this?

@OdysseusUnbound

@RianC even more interesting than the spirits my buddy brings back are the stories of his travels through some interesting parts of Honduras and Guatemala (he’s in the coffee business btw). But that’s a whole ‘nother topic.

19 days ago 1Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor replied

@OdysseusUnbound your post reminds me of a comment by a writer about what travel in Afghanistan was like in the 1970s: "The odds are 100% that you will be robbed, and 50% that the body will never be found."

(Not that travel in Afghanistan would be a lot of fun in 2021 either.)

@cricklewood thanks for joining in. I never had any experiences to speak of with tequila in my teens or twenties, though I was put off by the bottle of Cuervo Gold, a low quality mixto (= 49% grain neutral spirits) of course, that was the first bottle of tequila that my wife and I ever owned, in my 30s. So until about 12 years ago I considered that I would never like any tequilas, and that tequila was for me "the final frontier" of spirits appreciation. When I actually got the experience of 10 or 20 reputable tequilas it didn't take long for me to understand that I had hitherto merely been ignorant by virtue of inexperience. I then considered Pisco to be the final frontier, because I had never tasted a pisco which I liked. Even that is no longer true for me in the last 4 years.

Apparently 38% ABV is a/the common bottling and drinking strength in Mexico. No tequila is sold in the USA under 40% ABV fortunately, though it is still true that higher ABV tequilas remain as of February 2021 quite rare worldwide. This can and probably will change in the near future, at least in the USA.

19 days ago 3Who liked this?

@Nozinan
Nozinan replied

@Victor I guess Lambertus is truly the final frontier, in a class of its own.

@OdysseusUnbound I recall my travels in Nicaragua and Costa Rica very fondly. I experienced rum for the first time (I don't think I had ever had it other than in cooking before), Flor de Caña, and had some of the best coffee I have ever tasted there.

19 days ago 3Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@Victor, another excellent topic for discussion! Congratulations on keeping the streak of alliterative titles intact for alternative spirits forums.

Tequila Talk

Brandy Banter

Rum Ruminations

18 days ago 2Who liked this?

JayRain replied

@paddockjudge Gin gossip does not really align well so how about Gabbing about Gin or Gin Gabfest?

Mezcal Musings

Cognac Conversations

have to think about vodka (vitriol is the first that comes to mind as not a fan unless it is aged in oak-barrels (a find at the Whiskey Exchange in London that I will never forget)

18 days ago 5Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor replied

@paddockjudge yes, the alliteration was intentional.

@JayRain I like:

Mezcal Muddling

Cognac Cognizance

Vodka Vantage

Gin Groupies

18 days ago 4Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor replied

Whisky Whining...or Wine Whisking?

For Sake's sake.

18 days ago 2Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@BlueNote, hahaha those are clever.

@JayRain, Cognac Conversations... c’est bon!

Here’s a few more:

Grapevine Gospel, Grain Gospel

Barrel Char Chatter

Spirit Speak(ing)

(Vox) Eau de Vie Voice

Sour Mash Summit

New Make News

Dramming Drabble

Ex-bourbon Expositor

Half-pint Heralder

Sulphur Sully

Peat Bog Parables

Funky Finishes

18 days ago 2Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@Victor, hahaha, your Gin Groupies, a bunch of Grey-hairs attending a Martini Musings Speed-tasting session.

18 days ago 1Who liked this?

MRick replied

@Victor I don’t own a lot of tequila but, by chance, I do have unopened bottles of the first 3 on your list.

17 days ago 1Who liked this?

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@RianC@OdysseusUnbound

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