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Archive for the ‘Blanco Tequila’ Category

2015 Margarita Challenge #10 – Hornitos Plata Tequila

Posted by Arctic Wolf on May 5, 2015


Hornitos Margarita

A few days ago I announced that my Rum Chums and I had been busy during the months of March and April sampling a variety of Blanco Tequilas cocktails (Margarita Cocktails to be exact) with the aim of determining which was the best agave spirit for the quintessential Tequila cocktail, the Margarita. Beginning today, on Cinco de Mayo, and then in a countdown format throughout the month of May, I shall publish the results. I am also going to take this opportunity to reassess many of my previous tequila reviews, with the aim of incorporating the newest information available about each brand and of course incorporating my groups deliberations into the review process. I shall begin my publications with the spirit my group judged as the 10th Best Blanco Tequila to use for mixing your Margarita Cocktails, Hornitos Plata.

And in fact, you may read my most recent review of the Hornitos Plata by clicking on the following link:

Review: Hornitos Plata Tequila

“… The entry into the mouth is spicy with more heated citrus zest than I noticed on the nose. In addition to citrus zest, the spicy flavour also carries black pepper, a touch of cloves and perhaps a little ginger across the palate as well …”

If you wish to follow my 2015 Rum Howler Margarita Countdown, I have created a summary page which will list all of the results as they are published. That page is available here:

2015 Rum Howler Margarita Challenge

Note: Hornitos Plata Tequila is a 100 % Agave Tequila produced by the Sauza Tequila Import Company. The Plata Tequila is said to be the creation of Don Francisco Havier Sauza (Don Franco), who is a third generation member of the Sauza family which founded the La Preseverancia, distillery. Incidentally, Don Franco is credited with helping the Mexican Government to establish the Jalisco region of Mexico as the exclusive origin of genuine tequila in 1974.

Please enjoy this new Rum Howler Challenge!

Posted in Awards, Blanco Tequila, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 2015 Margarita Challenge #10 – Hornitos Plata Tequila

2015 Rum Howler Margarita Challenge

Posted by Arctic Wolf on May 3, 2015

Alfred Cointreau Margarita SAM_1517s

Alfred Cointreau Margarita

During the months of March and April, my Rum Chums and I embarked on a Tequila Odyssey, as we sampled and tasted a series of blanco spirits in an attempt to determine the best Tequila to feature this summer when sipping Margarita Cocktails. Prior to this engagement, I contacted several of my industry sources letting them know about my plans for the Margarita Challenge which I would publish as a series of reviews during the month of May. I was of course provided with samples from some of these sources and after combining those samples with the bottles of tequila which I already owned, I felt I had enough agave spirit to make for a worthwhile competition. Hence my plans for the 2015 Rum Howler Margarita Challenge came to fruition.

During my initial deliberations regarding the Margarita Challenge, the folks at Select Wines stepped up and arranged for me to receive a bottle of Cointreau singed by Alfred Cointreau himself, and asked me if I would consider using their spirit as the orange liqueur of choice for the cocktail challenge. I thought using the special bottle of Cointreau was a splendid idea, and in honour of Mr. Cointreau (for supplying and signing my bottle) I have dubbed my version of the quintessential Tequila cocktail used for the challenge, the Alfred Cointreau Margarita.

(You can find the recipe here.)

Herencia Margarita SAM_1514s

Herencia Margarita

The deliberations regarding the Margarita Challenge are complete and my Rum Chums and I have determined what we believe are the best 10 blanco tequila spirits for this summer’s backyard cocktail enjoyment. I will begin to publish the official results on May 05 (Cinco de Mayo), however I could not resist providing you with a prequel of sorts by offering my recently re-visited review for Herencia de Plata Tequila a spirit which deserves an honourable mention as it fell just outside the top ten.

Here is a link to the newly republished and re-scored review of Herencia de Plata review:

Review: Herencia de Plata Tequila

“… The aroma from the glass is somewhat soft and earthy with hints of honey caressed by a very light smoke and even lighter vanilla. A smattering of white pepper and of zesty lime has risen into the breezes, and that punky agave scent we know so well has melted nicely into the citrus and pepper …”

This inexpensive blanco tequila is a real crowd-pleaser with a taste which matches many much more expensive brands.

Posted in Awards, Blanco Tequila, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , , , | Comments Off on 2015 Rum Howler Margarita Challenge

Review: Dulce Vida Organic Tequila (Blanco)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on November 28, 2014

Lexi's Cocktail SAM_1367Dulce Vida Organic Tequila is produced from 100% organic agave grown in the Los Altos highlands which are situated in the Tequila Region of Mexico. Dulce Vida produces the only 100° proof, 100% organic tequila (also free from additives of any kind) in the world. As well as being 100% organic, this spirit is also produced in a manner which embraces the concept of sustainability. During production of the spirit a complete waste recapture program is set in place which results in the production of a nutrient-rich soil supplement which is supplied to to the local farming community. As well, the methane gas which is produced as a by-product of the waste collection & processing is captured and utilized to help power Dulca Vida’s production facilities in the village of San Ignacio Cerro Gordo at Campanario (in Mexico of course).

You may read my latest tequila review by clicking the following link:

Review: Dulce Vida Organic Tequila (Blanco)

“… There is a light earthy quality which sits within the spicy pepper and some effervescent citrus notes which remind me of lightly sweet grapefruit and lime citrus zest. The breezes above the glass also carry impressions of fresh garden mint, some very mild licorice and a hint of the smell of wet grass just after a light rain shower …”

I had a few friends over when I poured out the Dulce Vida Blanco for the first time, and with the help of my new friend Lexi, we constructed a Lemon-Lime Margarita that tastes absolutely wonderful with the Dulce Vida spirit. I have included Lexi’s Cocktail at the conclusion of the review.

Cheers Everyone!

Note: Dulce Vida Organic Tequila was recently released in Ontario, and I was provided a sample bottle of the blanco spirit by the distributor Woodman Wine and Spirits.

Posted in Blanco Tequila, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , , , | Comments Off on Review: Dulce Vida Organic Tequila (Blanco)

Review: Jose Cuervo Especial Plata (Silver)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 12, 2014

SAM_0541 Jose Cuervo Especial SilverAccording to the Jose Cuervo website, it all began in 1795, when Jose María Guadalupe de Cuervo was producing his Mexcal wine spirit commercially having obtained an official permit for this purpose from the King of Spain. By 1812, he had established La Rojena, the distillery which to this day produces Jose Cuervo Tequila. By 1844, Jose Cuervo Tequila was being distributed within Mexico, and in 1873 the earliest known documented export of the Tequila outside of Mexico apparently occurred when 3 bottles of Jose Cuervo were transported across the United States border by donkey. As you know, those exports have continued (although no longer by donkey), and now the Jose Cuervo brand is the best-selling tequila in the entire world.

The Jose Cuervo Especial is available as both a Gold or ‘joven’ tequila and as a Silver or ‘plata’ tequila. These tequila spirits are not made from 100 % blue agave which means that they are referred to in the industry as “Mixto“. A Mixto tequila must have at least 51 % of its volume made from blue agave distillate, but the other 49 % can be distilled from other non agave sugars (usually sugar cane). Mixto is also subject to less stringent regulation with respect to additives such as sugar syrup and caramel.

The Dreadful Lemon Sky

The Dreadful Lemon Sky

(In July of 2013, Proximo Spirits acquired the distribution rights for the Jose Cuervo brand in supplanting Diageo, who had managed the brand since 1997.)

You may click on the following review excerpt to read my full review:

Review: Jose Cuervo Especial Plata (Silver)

“… The initial nose from the glass carries a mixture of light honey, mild white pepper and a somewhat muted herbaceous agave (the smell of which resembles boiled squash). As I let the glass sit, the light honey tones begin to remind me of sugar cane syrup, and the breezes above the glass reveal a light impression of lemon zest within the white pepper …”

Although this review was originally published two years ago, I have updated it to contain more current information and added a new cocktail suggestion, the Dreadful Lemon Sky. This Margarita style cocktail is based upon the Picador, a recipe which predates the margarita by several decades.

Please enjoy my updated review, and the cocktail suggestions which follow it. Cheers!


Posted in Blanco Tequila, Mixto Tequila, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Review: Jose Cuervo Especial Plata (Silver)

The Year in Tequila (2013 Rum Howler Awards)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on October 27, 2013


In my locale, many whisky events populate our calendars, and a few Rum Clubs have popped up over the last several years which feature tastings and the like where consumers have an opportunity to taste a new spirit before plunking down their cash to buy it. With respect to tequila however, consumers (again in my locale) have very little ability to read about or taste any of the new Tequila brands as such clubs and events are rather scarce. Perhaps my 2013 Rum Howler awards for the Year in Tequila can help remedy the situation somewhat. (And hopefully I will be able to sample more of these new brands and feature more reviews in the coming year.)

I was able to sample and taste 17 different agave spirits for my 2013 Rum Howler Awards. The Awards I am presenting are based upon side by side tastings of the various spirits which are in competition for each particular award. Depending upon the style of Tequila I was sampling, I would build one or two Cocktails with each brand to taste, and I also sampled each spirit neat side by side with those of the same style. And so without further ado, it is time for me to reveal the recipients of the 2013 Rum Howler Awards for Excellence in the Production of Tequila.

These Awards are for the best Tequila Spirits I encountered in the year 2013!

The 2013 Rum Howler Awards – The Year in Tequila


Enjoy this break from my Rum Howler Top 10 Rums Countdown, which will resume on Monday with the number 7 rum.

Posted in Anejo Tequila, Awards, Blanco Tequila, Extras, Reposado Tequila, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Review: Corralejo Tequila Blanco

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 23, 2013

CorralejoHacienda Corralejo was established in 1775 by Don Pedro Sanchez de Tagle in the Mexican State of Guanajuato. The distillery uses traditional methods of fermentation and distillation with clay ovens used to cook the agave and copper pot stills used for the distillation. The Blanco Tequila is an unaged spirit bottled directly from that copper pot still.

The Quick Red FoxI was given my sample of the Corralejo Blanco by a good friend who poured off a 200 ml sample from a full bottle he had been gifted. The bottle had sat in his cupboard for a few years; but was unopened until I was given my sample. I mention this so that the reader will know that the particular bottle I am reviewing was not from a current batch; rather it was from an unopened bottle which was several years old.

You may read my full review by clicking on the following excerpt:

Review: Corralejo Tequila Blanco

“… The nose of the glass carries a mixture of honey and pepper with light herbaceous tones of agave. As I let the glass sit and return after a few minutes I notice that the honeyed tones have deepened into an aroma very similar to cane syrup. The peppery notes now carry a little citrus, and the agave remains light and enjoyable …”

Please enjoy this review (originally published in 2011) which includes a very nice recipe, The Quick Red Fox.

Posted in Blanco Tequila, Cocktails & Recipes, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on Review: Corralejo Tequila Blanco

A Reivew for Cinco de Mayo

Posted by Arctic Wolf on May 5, 2013

PaQui Tequila (Silver)It is commonly believed that May, 5th or Cinco de Mayo is a well celebrated holiday in Mexico roughly equivalent to the US Holiday of Independence on July, 4rth. The truth of the matter is that Cinco de Mayo is not really a major holiday in Mexico and is more widely celebrated in the United states than it ever has been south of their border. It is not even a holiday related to Mexico’s actual Independence Day known as El Grito de la Independencia (“Cry of Independence”). That phrase was first spoken on September 16th, 1810 by Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, a Roman Catholic priest in the small town of Delores. That moment is said to have marked the beginning of  Mexico’s War of Independence against Spain.

Cinco de May commemorates an entirely different event, the 1862 Battle of Puebla, in which the Mexican Army met and drove back an invasion force of the French. This battle ended in a victory for the Mexican Army over a much stronger and better equipped occupying French force. Although the French continued their push towards Mexico City, the Battle of Puebla provided the Mexican people a much need morale boost which eventually led to their ultimate victory over the French. (History it seems is full of remarkable parallels.)

Thus in recognition of the Battle of Puebla for which Cinco de Mayo is celebrated, we may raise a glass of Tequila today. The glass I am going to raise is one of PaQuí Tequila (Silvera).

Here is an excerpt from my review:

Review: PaQuí Silvera Tequila

” … The aroma from the glass is laid back.  An earthy agave scent is present, but it does not jump from the glass, rather it seeps out slowly. Very light citrus tones follow, but they do not try to assault the nostrils, rather they lie very gently in the breezes …”

Of course I am going to enjoy a few cocktails today, most probably a Metro Mexico Cocktail, and perhaps as the sun gets warmer, a Royal Alexander Margarita.

Posted in Blanco Tequila, Cocktails & Recipes, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , , | Comments Off on A Reivew for Cinco de Mayo

The Year in Tequila

Posted by Arctic Wolf on October 30, 2012

All things considered, I had a pretty good year with respect to the spirit called Tequila in 2012. I was able to help in a small way with Edmonton’s first Tequila festival earlier this month, and I was able to double the number of reviews here on my website. Although Tequila has a small following in my local market (relative to rum and whisky), that small group of tequila aficionados is very passionate about their favourite spirit; and, I believe that group of Tequila lovers is steadily growing!

In an effort to recognize the growing importance of this spirit in not only my locale, but also as a global spirit; I have decided this year to give Tequila its own awards page on my website this year (last year I grouped the Gin, Tequila and Vodka Awards together all on the same page).

It is time to reveal my Tequila awards by looking at the Rum Howler’s Year in Tequila.

Here is a Link to the Awards Page:

The 2012 Rum Howler Awards – The Year in Tequila

Congratulations to all the Award Winners!

Posted in Anejo Tequila, Awards, Blanco Tequila, Extras, Reposado Tequila, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , , , | Comments Off on The Year in Tequila

Review: Cruz Del Sol Silver Tequila

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 9, 2012

According to the website information, Cruz Tequila contains no chemicals, additives or flavorings. It is produced entirely from Blue Weber agave plants grown in the highlands of the Los Altos region of Jalisco, Mexico. After harvesting the agave, it is slow cooked in traditional brick ovens for two days, then cooled before the juice is extracted and then naturally fermented. The fermented juice is double distilled in small batches using a proprietary process. All Cruz Tequila is packaged and bottled using recycled materials. This includes the blown glass bottles and the aluminum caps as well as the aluminum cross on the front label.

I good folks at Cruz Tequila arranged for me to receive a bottle of Cruz Del Sol Silver Tequila at the beginning of the summer so that I could taste it and write about it if I chose to do so.

Here is an excerpt from the resulting review:

“… The initial aroma the aroma from the Tequila is somewhat earthy, and has a sweet underlying agave scent that to me is somewhat reminiscent of freshly broiled garden squash. Soft peppery notes come forward out of the glass, followed by clean scents reminiscent of lightly sweet orange and lime citrus juices…”

You may read my full review here:

Review: Cruz Del Sol Silver Tequila

Included with the review is a nice recipe I created for this silver tequila called, Free Fall in Crimson.

Please enjoy the review and the great recipe I provided.

Posted in Blanco Tequila, Cocktails & Recipes, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on Review: Cruz Del Sol Silver Tequila

Review: Avion Silver Tequila

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 1, 2012

According to the website, Avion Silver Tequila is a pure 100% Weber Blue Agave tequila made from the hand-picked agave grown in the Highlands of Jalisco, Mexico. As a highland tequila,we can expect the Avion Tequila to exhibit strong fruity citrus notes and to have a little hot pepper in the delivery and in the finish. (This is as opposed to lowland tequila which has stronger earthier flavours of agave and less hot pepper.)

To produce Avion Tequila, the harvested agave from the highlands is first slow roasted in brick ovens to bring out its natural flavors and aromas. After distillation, but before the tequila is bottled it is run through a proprietary “Ultra Slow Filtration” process which apparently lasts ten times longer than the filtration process for other tequilas. Something good must be happening because according to the Judges at the 2012 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, this tequila is pretty darn good. They awarded Avion Silver Tequila as the Best Unaged White Spirit, and then gave it a Double Gold Medal for the second year in a row.

This product has been brought into my local market by Corby, and I was delighted when the local rep arranged for me to receive a bottle to review on my website.

Here is an excerpt from my review:

“… When I brought the glass to my nose, I was taken aback. The nose is wonderful. There is a light effervescent aroma of grapefruit zest which caught my attention immediately. The aroma is very reminiscent of the smells of springtime just after a light rain shower; it is fresh, clean and very enticing… “

You may read my full review here:

Review: Avion Silver Tequila

As well I have included another original cocktail, The Dreadful Lemon Sky!

Please enjoy my cocktail suggestion and of course, my review.

Cheers and Happy Canada Day!

Posted in Blanco Tequila, Cocktails & Recipes, Tequila, Tequila Review | Tagged: , , , , , | Comments Off on Review: Avion Silver Tequila


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