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Camarena Reposado Tequila

  81/100
A review by Chip Dykstra (Aka Arctic Wolf)
Published May 26, 2020

Camarena is a relatively new tequila brand launched in 2010 by six generation tequila producer, Familia Camarena. The spirit up until recently was produced at the Tequila Supremo Distillery (Nom 1456 CRT). Recently however, there has been a change and the spirit is currently produced at Casa Tequilera Herencia de Los Altos, S.A. De C.V. (Nom 1596 CRT) located just a little southeast of Arrandas at Jesus Maria, Jalisco. The spirit is distributed in Western Canada by E. & J. Gallo Winery.

The Camarena Reposado Tequila is produced from 100% Blue Weber agaves, grown in the rich red clay and cool climate of the Highlands of Jalisco, Mexico. As a Highland Tequila, we can expect Camarena 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 strong earthy flavours of agave and less hot pepper.)

In the Bottle 4/5

A bottle shot of the Camarena Reposado is shown to the left. The flask style bottle is nice, and it is sealed with a wooden topped screw cap closure. When I examined the label I saw that the NOM identifier on the label read ‘Nom 1456’ which means that my sample bottle is an older bottle which was produced at the Tequila Supremo Distillery. It will take some time for the new spirit produced at Casa Tequilera Herencia de Los Altos, S.A. De C.V. (Nom 1596 CRT) to reach the market in my locale. Once it does their may be changes in the quality of the spirit.

In the Glass 8/10

When I poured myself a small sample of the pale straw coloured spirit, I gave my glass a light tilt and a slow swirl and discovered a light sheen of tequila was left on the inside of the glencairn which slowly disappeared giving up only a few thin slender legs. As I was doing this I began to notice a light push of alcohol in the breezes which caused me to approach the tasting with a little caution.

When I brought the glass to my nose, I discovered a heated agave aroma combined with spicy white pepper and citrus zest scents rising into the breezes above the glass. The agave fruit is aggressive but once we get past the punky nature of the agave I begin to notice a light butterscotch sweetness with hints of vanilla, almond and perhaps just a touch of oak spice.

In the Glass 49/60

I braced myself for the first sip not knowing really what to expect. My first impression was one of surprise as the spirit did not carry the firm alcohol and spicy bite I had expected. The fruity agave seemed to take center stage. The agave flavour was punky and vegetal with melon like flavours of squash and zuchinni. As I sipped peppery notes of lime zest and white pepper began to take over and they became more forceful with each sip. There are some hints of butterscotch and vanilla, but these are muted compared to the spicy highland agave.

I decided to mix a Margarita and found the resulting cocktail was quite nice with the agave presence pushing through the mixed drink giving it a nice flavour while at the same time being quite approachable. I mixed a Paloma as well and was similarly rewarded.

In The Throat  12/15

There is both a light alcohol astringency as well as overt price in the finish which makes sipping uncomfortable. As well the finish seems a tad shortened which is odd considering the flavourful agave which was apparent in the delivery.

The Afterburn 8/10

Camerana Reposado is very similar to the Camarena Blanco in tha tfor myself it’s destiny will be Palomas and Margaritas. It is a very inexpensive 100 % agave spirit which makes the tequila an ideal choice if you have a crowd to please.

You may read some of my other Tequila Reviews (click the link) if you wish to have some comparative reviews.

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Suggested Recipe:

The Margarita is probably the quintessential Tequila cocktail, and it is one of the most popular cocktails in North America. Although this bar drink is typically made with lime juice, it is certainly acceptable to add a bit of lemon as well.

Lexi’s Cocktail (a Margarita with Lemon and Lime)

1 1/2 oz Camarena Reposado Tequila
3/4 oz Grand Marnier
1/2 oz fresh Lime Juice
1/4 oz fresh Lemon Juice
1/4 oz Sugar Syrup (1:1 ratio)
Ice
Lime Slice for garnish (optional)

Chill a cocktail glass and if desired rim the outside with coarse salt
Place the Tequila, Lemon and Lime, Grand Marnier, and Sugar Syrup into a metal shaker
Shake until the outside of the shaker begins to frost
Strain into the chilled cocktail glass
Garnish with Lime

Enjoy Responsibly!

Note: If  you are interested in more cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!

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You may (loosely) interpret the scores as follows.

0-25     A spirit with a rating this low would actually kill you.
26-49   Depending upon your fortitude you might actually survive this.
50 -59  You are safe to drink this…but you shouldn’t.
60-69   Substandard swill which you may offer to people you do not want to see again.
70-74    Now we have a fair mixing Tequila.  Accept this but make sure it is mixed into a cocktail.
75-79    You may begin to serve this to friends, (we are probably still cocktail in territory).
80-84    We begin to enjoy this spirit neat or on the rocks. (I will still primarily mix cocktails)
85-89    Excellent for sipping or for mixing delicious cocktails!
90-94    Definitely a primary sipping spirit, in fact you may want to hoard this for yourself.
95-97.5 The Cream of the Crop
98+       I haven’t met this bottle yet…but I want to.

Very loosely we may put my scores into terms that you may be familiar with on a Gold, Silver, and  Bronze medal  scale as follows:

70 – 79.5    Bronze Medal (Recommended only as a mixer)
80 – 89.5     Silver Medal (Recommended for sipping and or a high quality mixer)
90 – 95         Gold Medal (Highly recommended for sipping and for sublime cocktails.)
95.5+            Platinum Award (Highest Recommendation)

 
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