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t1 Tequila Uno Anejo Estelar 100% de Agave Azul

t1 Sensacional
Tequila Extra Añejo
100% de Agave Azul


By Robert Plotkin

Few products are so aptly named. This tequila is flat out sensational, one of the finest extra añejos you'll likely ever have the good fortune to taste. If you're looking for a world-class tequila experience, one marked with nuance and sophistication, then look no further than t1 Sensacional Tequila Extra Añejo 100% de Agave Azul. Aged tequila just doesn't get any better than this.

The tequila is the handiwork of Germán González Gorrochotegui, former master distiller at Chinaco, the brand created by his father, Guillermo Gonzalez Diaz Lombardo. Germán worked closely with his father most of his life and learned how to handcraft tequila using traditional techniques now considered too expensive and labor intensive.

After years of serving as Chinaco's master distiller, Germán left the company and began making tequila at La Tequileña [1146] in Jalisco. The agaves he uses are selected from estates in and around Atotonilco in the Highlands. After harvesting, he cooks the agaves and then allows the extracted juice to ferment naturally for around 72 hours. Like his father before him, he slowly, methodically double-distills the fermented wash—called mosto—in a traditional copper pot still, a laborious process designed to produce the most flavorful distillate possible.

Shortly after the tequila exits the still, it is placed in oak casks used previously to mature fine Scotch whisky. The tequila will spend between 36 and 42 months in the barrel and then blended in extremely small batches. Not surprisingly, the Scotch oak has a profound impact on the finished tequila, which is bottled at 42% alcohol by volume (84 proof).

t1 Sensacional has a deep, reddish/amber appearance, a velvety, medium-weight body and a wafting bouquet comprised of citrus zest, baking spice, honey, chocolate and dried herbs with whiffs of smoke and roasted agave. Every minute you allow this complex spirit to breathe in the glass, the more tantalizing aromas come forward. The entry is soothing and warm, while the palate is a lovely, long lasting affair of citrus, anise, cloves, nougat, cinnamon and Sherry-like flavors with spicy herbaceous notes.

The t1 Sensacional is not Germán's only extra añejo on the market. He has also garnered critical acclaim for his Tears of Llorona Extra Añejo 100% de Agave Azul. Tears of Llorona is a blend of extra añejo tequilas half of which were finished in Scotch whisky barrels, a quarter in Sherry wood and a quarter in French Limousin casks used previously to mature Cognac. The extra añejo is the rendered to proof and bottled at 43% alcohol by volume (86 proof). Because the "Tears" blend is significantly different than that featured in t1 Sensacional, expect each to be characteristically distinctive.

Between the Scotch influence and its prominent agave character, t1 Sensacional is unlike any extra añejo that have preceded it and therein lies much of its charm. It's a bona fide work of art.

Kudos to Master Distiller Germán Gonzalez. ¡Salud!