After more than six years of deliberation, the Tequila Regulatory Council has created the designation extra añejo, which signifies that a 100 percent agave tequila has been barrel-aged for three years or more. For generations, these ultra-luxurious spirits were reserved for the private use of maestro tequileros and their families, but now any commoner with a few hundred dollars in their pocket can afford what many consider the epitome of the craft. Here’s a look at the recent arrivals.
4 Copas. Made in the lowlands of Jalisco, 4 Copas Extra Añejo is distilled using certified organic agaves and matured for 54 months in American white oak. The añejo retails under $200, which makes it an affordable slice of heaven.
Cabo Uno Añejo Reserva. Created by ex-Van Halen rocker Sammy Hagar, Cabo Uno is aged 38 months in both French and American oak barrels and limited in production to only 1,800 cases a year.
El Diamante del Cielo. The handcrafted, limited production tequila is made from estate-grown agaves and triple-distilled in state of the art pot stills. El Diamante Del Cielo Añejo is a blend of tequilas aged up to four years in oak.
Gran Centenario Leyenda. Gran Centenario has extended its world-class range with the release of Leyenda, a blend of añejos aged four years in French Limousin oak barrels. Older reserve añejos are then added to enhance its depth and complexity.
Gran Patrón Burdeos. Debuting at around $500, Burdeos is made from a blend of añejos aged in American and French oak. The tequila is then transferred to ex-Bordeaux barrels and racked for a year or more. Over that time the tequila develops a rich amber hue and wine-induced flavors.
Milagro Select Barrel Reserve. The award-winning añejo is triple-distilled in the highlands of Tepatitlán and aged no less than three-years in new French oak barrels.
Partida Elegante. Hand made on the family’s estate outside of Amatitán, Elegante is distilled entirely from estate-grown agaves and matured in American oak barrels for 36 to 40 months. The result is a lush and exquisite spirit.