Sipping Off The Cuff: Riazul Tequila Blanco

Tequila Aficionado’s Mike Morales and Alex Perez taste and discuss Riazul Tequila Blanco from Nom 1460.

 

The History of Riazul Tequila

riazul_storyTwo hundred years ago, the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico served as a key battlefront in the Mexican War of Independence. During that struggle, Maria Higinia Gomez served as a high counselor to the Mexican rebel leaders. For her service, she was granted 10,000 acres of land — most of which she gave away to revolutionaries who fought for Mexico’s freedom. The remaining 620 acres was handed down from generation to generation and virtually untouched until Riazul’s founder, Iñaki Orozco, inherited the land in the late 1990s.

Iñaki knew that the land was located within the exclusive area of Mexico where agave could be harvested into what is officially recognized as tequila. He approached the family elders and pitched his idea to initially plant a few agave plants, with plans for more a much larger agave field in the future.

The elders were skeptical and challenged Iñaki‘s vision as naive and nearly impossible to achieve. But the young idealist was persistent and won them over. Soon, Iñaki had his chance to prove himself. He planted 100 initial agave shoots and that early agave crop flourished. Iñaki worked day and night to plant more than 175,000 more shoots.

Here, the high elevation, cool climate, and red volcanic soils — or tierra roja — give rise to agave that matures for close to a decade before reaching harvesting quality. During that time, the agave soaks up unique aromas and flavors indigenous only to this region.

Agaves harvested in the Jalisco highlands contain higher sugar content, resulting in more aromatic tequilas with sweeter tasting notes.

The Tequila Dream Evolves — and Thrives

Early on, Iñaki simply planned to grow agave as raw product for other tequila companies. Later, he began thinking about launching a private label brand for restaurants and bars, but his dream kept getting bigger. When the elders heard thatIñaki planned to launch his own premium tequila brand, they thought he had lost his mind.

Today, Riazul Premium tequilas are available in hundreds of restaurants, bars, and retail outlets throughout Texas and in parts of New York, Illinois, Florida, Arizona, and Nevada, with expansion into other markets in the works.

Riazul Receives High Marks

Riazul Blanco and Añejo were introduced at the end of 2008 as the first tequilas in the Riazul portfolio. Both have gained quick acclaim from tequila experts and amateurs alike.

Riazul Reposado launched in September 2009 and word is spreading fast about this barrel-oaked tequila that is aged for nine months.

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