Where I’m from the tequila section in the liquor store is about the size of a 21″ TV. In this section you can find the two main brands of tequila, Jose and Sauza. There were others like Hoja Vieja, a blended and foreign bottled tequila, and Olmeca Gold. Other than that there was generally very little selection and there wasn’t any great tequila, so I often walked past without much care. I had done tequila shots in college and with all the salt licking and lime sucking, I didn’t really remember what tequila truly tasted like. I did remember that tequila had a ’sharp pepper bite’, but that was probably because it was the cheap variety. It was time for me to take a new look at quality 100% agave tequila, but where was I going to find a source?
It just happens that there are relatives in Texas, and being so close to Mexico, they had to have tequila. So I sent my wife on a mission. Actually, she went to visit, but I insisted that the family visit was secondary to getting a good bottle of tequila. I did my research, drew up a list acceptable brands and unacceptable brands. I dropped her off at the airport, in Detroit, and waited patiently. In a week I would have a good if not great bottle of tequila in my hands.
As it happens, the relatives live in a dry country! But, my wife understand my needs ended up finding a unique city, within a city, that had one liquor store. As she went in and headed towards the tequila section, she realized that the list was a good thing, but also realized that I wasn’t looking for cheap tequila. Because I was back at home, in the cold and snow, she approved the purchase and spent the money for a bottle of Patron 100% Anejo Tequila. She boarded the plane home, and completed her task.
Patron tequila is packaged in hand crafted bottles, with a big nobby cork. Each bottle is individually numbered, mine being bottle #591834, and signed. The only problem is that the cork tends to disintegrate around the edges and leaves little bits of cork in the tequila. I suppose this is better than a worm. And on that worm thing, that’s all rumour, or for the most part, but some companies are adding worms to gain market share. Anyway, this tequila is a light yellow in colour, not like the fake stuff that has caramel colouring added. This is the real deal and the tequila has been barrel aged for a minimum of 12 months.
What you need to do before you taste this spirit is throw away your salt shaker and lime wedge, you won’t be needing those items for this tequila. What you will need is a tulip shaped glass, like a scotch tasting glass, and maybe some spring or mineral water. The aroma is agava, pepper and subtle hints of smokiness. It is strong, but not pungent and almost has a wine characteristic to it. Taking a sip you will get a spicy, pepper like flavour that is smooth. Then you will get the smokiness and a slight sweetness in the finish with a long spicy tingle on your tongue. Adding a little water helps brings out some of the barrel characteristics.
Overall Patron Anejo is a decent sipping tequila. It is very smooth, but still has that characteristic tequila flavour and spice. If you have hard feelings towards tequila and want to give it a second chance, this is a good place to start. If you are looking to expand your horizons and try something new, Patron Anejo won’t let you down.
Drinking tequila straight isn’t for everyone, so if that is the case you should check out how to make a proper Margarita.