The Aztecs were the first to cultivate maguey (agave) plants for their sweet nectar. Left to ferment naturally, it became the foamy and viscous drink called pulque.
The Spanish Conquistadors first distilled pulque into mescal wine—tequila’s ancestor–in the 16th Century. Five centuries later, neither culture ever imagined that tequila would look like this.
El Paso’s Dos Lunas brand has raised the bar in the fast growing luxury spirits market with the ultimate rendition of artisan tequila, Grand Reserve ($2500).
This exquisite extra aged añejo is poured into one of a thousand numbered, handcrafted, limited edition Baccarat crystal decanters. It is the first and only bottle that the French crystal producer has ever created for tequila. Grand Reserve, and its accompanying crystal stopper, is then cradled inside an elegant wooden case and locked with a sterling silver key.
Aged in Spanish sherry oak casks for ten years, this toffee-tinged, additive free 100% agave tequila is a sensory paradise. Inhale the aroma of plums, raisins, and brown sugar. Sip and savor dark chocolate, toasted almonds, and a hint of caramel.
Fueled by Dos Lunas’ founder, Richard C. Poe II and his passion to create “the world’s best tequila…that goal informed every decision that was made, from growth through production to packaging.”
Complex and luxurious, exclusive Grand Reserve rivals the sophistication and refinement of the finest brandies or cognacs today.
The Aztecs and the Conquistadors would agree—Dos Lunas Grand Reserve is the ultimate in opulence.
[Author’s note: Don’t have the ready cash for Grand Reserve? Don’t worry! Dos Lunas is also available in blanco, reposado, and the new anejo varietals at more reasonable prices throughout the US. Enjoy!]
The continuation of Podcast #2, this is Tequila Aficionado Founder, Alex Perez, and CEO, M.A. “Mike” Morales meeting face-to-face for the first time. They met in July of 2006 at a restaurant in California and tasted Siembra Azul, Dos Lunas and Jarro Viejo tequilas.
The continuation of Podcast #2, this is Tequila Aficionado Founder, Alex Perez, and CEO, M.A. “Mike” Morales meeting face-to-face for the first time. They met in July of 2006 at a restaurant in California and tasted Siembra Azul, Dos Lunas and Jarro Viejo tequilas. Their conversation begins with a discussion of Jose “Pepe” Hermosillo of Casa Noble.
The continuation of Podcast #2, this is Tequila Aficionado Founder, Alex Perez, and CEO, M.A. “Mike” Morales meeting face-to-face for the first time. They met in July of 2006 at a restaurant in California and tasted Siembra Azul, Dos Lunas and Jarro Viejo tequilas. Their conversation spanned everything from established tequila families, drinking from the barrel, traveling to Jalisco, resoling boots and more!
For some reason this article Tequila Timeline: From Agave to the Worm was reposted in Fast CompanyMagazine on Friday, November 20, 2009 from an earlier post on October 15, 2009. (Maybe it was because the editors forgot to add the cute tequila graphics the first time?)
Anyway, most of the timeline is historically accurate, except for this factoid:
“1873: Don Cenobio Sauza exports three barrels to El Paso, Texas, the first tequila in the United States. Today, the U.S. is the No. 1 market for tequila. Mexico is second. Third? Greece.”
The reference to Sauza exporting mezcal wine into El Paso in 1873 is incorrect. I’ll explain why momentarily, but first…
Texas’ long history of laying claim to being the home of tequila in the United States can be credited to W. Park Kerr of the El Paso Chile Company fame. Not for anything that he may have said, but for what he did.
Kerr was the first Texas entrepreneur to distill a private label tequila (Tequila Naciónal)in Mexico to his specifications, thus opening the floodgates of recent tequila brands based in Texas such as RiAzúl in Houston, El Grado in Corpus Christi, Republic Tequila in Austin, Buscadores in San Antonio, and Dos Lunas in El Paso, among others.
Sorry to break this to tejanos, but Texas was not the final destination of that first delivery.
The Rest of the Story
In his book La historia del tequila, de sus regiones y sus hombres, author Rogelio Luna Zamora recounts:
“‘…con destino a Nuevo Mexico sale una partida de 3 barriles y 6 botijas….’ El punto fronterizo por donde salió fue el Paso del Norte (hoy Ciudad Juárez) en aquel entonces, paso obligado a las mercaderías exportadas por tierra al mercado estadunidense.”
[“‘…with a destination of New Mexico there is a lot of 3 barrels and 6 jugs….’ The border town point of entry was el Paso del Norte (present day Juárez) that in those days was the required land passage for commodities exported into the American marketplace.”]
In 1873, New Mexico was a territory of the United States, but still considered part of Mexico. The final destination of Sauza’s shipment is believed to have been to the oldest capital city, Santa Fe. Being also the terminus of the legendary Santa Fe Trail, the route that opened the Southwest to trading with the Eastern United States, this conclusion only makes sense.
Thirty-nine years later, New Mexico joined the Union. Flash forward to today, and there is only one New Mexican owned brand of tequila (Silvercoin).
Perhaps now is the time for more New Mexico entrepreneurs to step up with tequila labels of their own?
Originally posted November 22, 2009 by TequilaRack.