Kind of Spirit: Tequila (Reposado and Silver)
Distillery: Tequila Corralejo
Age: Reposado: 4 months; Silver: unaged
ABV: 80 Proof
Suggested Retail: Reposado: $25.99; Silver: $21.99
I’m going to be honest, this is my first taste of tequila in a long time. As with a vast majority of people, I had a little too much tequila on my 21st birthday which scared me off of tequila ever since. Granted, what I had literally poured down my throat from the bottle at the hands of a bartender wasn’t anywhere near the quality of Corralejo. So when Corralejo sent a sample of their Reposado and Silver Tequila’s, it was time to dive back into some tequila!
When I was researching Corralejo’s background, I was surprised at the amount of history that the distillery had. They can actually trace their history all the way back to 1755 when they became the first estate in Mexico to commercially produce tequila! The original Hacienda Corralejo was even the birthplace of the Catholic priest, Don Miguel Hidalgo y Costillo, who is known for igniting the Mexican War of Independence. That’s quite a history!
Before I get into the actual tasting, I feel like I need to mention the unique process that Corralejo uses. They first begin with Blue Weber Agave and slow cook them in clay ovens. After the agave rests, it goes into the mill then goes through a double distillation process. First it goes through a column still, then into an Alembic copper pot still. Corralejo uses the Charentais distillation method, which is the same traditional process do distill cognac! After distillation, the Silver is ready to go into the bottle but the Reposado is aged for four months in barrels made up of American, Encino, and French Oak.
I must say, the nose on these two tequilas are nothing like the tequilas I remember! First with the Reposado, I am getting honey and agave right away. I also get vanilla, caramel and just a hint of brine. This is such a good nosing tequila! Next is the slightly brighter Silver. The agave definitely comes through but is joined by mint and citrus. Although the Silver doesn’t quite have the depth that the Reposado does (which is expected), it has a cleaner, brighter nose.
As with the nose, the taste of these two tequilas are different and distinct from one another. I’ll start again with the Reposado. This is one complex tequila, especially for the price! The same flavors of agave and honey are immediately noticeable, but there is much more going on here. There are also subtle flavors of citrus, vanilla, and oak along with a hint of peppercorn and mint. I have to also comment on the mouthfeel of this spirit because it has such a buttery consistency that I could even swear that I was tasting butter in the spirit. Although I guess that could’ve been due to a healthy pour throughout my tasting!
Just like in the nose, the Silver expression is a cleaner, more straightforward spirit. In the Silver, I get a more up front clear agave flavor. There are other subtle, supporting flavors like citrus, mint, general sweetness, and brine but the agave is clearly the star of the show. As for the mouthfeel, this is a crisp and clean spirit.
It never ceases to amaze me what even just a short time in a barrel, like four months for the Reposado, can do to a spirit. That’s probably why I am such a lover of whiskey! Because of this, I’d go for the Reposado but I do enjoy the Silver and know that for someone that enjoys a crisper, clean spirit, the Silver is the choice for them. As I discovered as a novice at tequila but coming from a bourbon/whiskey backround, the Reposado is a great option to dip into the more craft tequila world. If you want an agave forward tequila on the other hand, go with the Silver. You really can’t go wrong, or beat that price!