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Roca Patrón Reposado Tequila

Review: Roca Patrón Reposado Tequila  94.5/100
a review by Chip Dykstra (Aka Arctic Wolf)
Posted on August 25, 2017

According to the Patrón Tequila website, The Patrón Spirits Company was created in 1989 when John Paul DeJoria, and Martin Crowley formed the company with the stated singular goal of producing “the best tequila in the world.”

Roca Patrón Tequila is a pure 100% Agave Tequila made from agave grown in the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico. The agave is 6 to 7 years old when harvested, and the heart of the plant or the piña is all that is used. After harvest the piñas are chopped in half by hand and slowly steamed in masonry brick ovens for about 79 hours to soften them. The softened piñas are then shredded and placed into a traditional stone pit, where they are crushed by a large 2 ton stone milling wheel called a Tahona.

According to many Tequila producers, the manner in which juice is extracted from the piñas has a noticeable impact upon the flavour of the final distilled tequila. This was very evident when I tasted the Roco Patrón Tequila which has a noticeably softer and earthier flavour than the regular Patrón Tequila distilled mainly from juice extracted by a roller mill.

Roca Patrón Reposado Tequila is distilled twice in copper pot stills , and then aged for 5 months in used American oak bourbon barrels. The lightly aged spirit is bottled at 42 % alcohol by volume.

In the Bottle 5/5

To the left is a photo of the Roca Patrón Silver Tequila presentation which I snapped on my back deck. The bottle has a comfortable squat rectangular shape and features a decorative chocolate-brown lace tied around its neck in a style which reminds me of the western dress ties I used to wear when I was boy. The overall look is similar to other premium Tequila bottles I have seen. The labeling is simple but not unattractive, and I like that the bottle is sealed with a nice cork which gives me that nice satisfying ‘pop’ when I open it.

I should also mention that the bottle is housed in a very nice beige box which serves to elevate the presentation. On the back of this box is a description of the ‘500-year-old Tahona Process’ and the production method used to make the tequila.

I really like what I see.

In the Glass 9/10

I poured out a sample of Roca Patrón Reposado Tequila into my glencairn glass and began my examinations with a good look at the agave spirit before I began to nose it. The spirit has a very light straw colour consistent with a short five month stay in used American Oak. I gave the glass a light tilt and a slow swirl and discovered a light sheen of tequila was left on the inside of the glass which slowly gave up a plethora of small dr0plets. The slender legs which formed from the falling droplets are again consistent with my expectations.

When I brought the glass to my nose, I discovered a lightly sweet, mildly punky agave aroma lifting from the glass. It has a fruity smell; but it did not carry the typical sharpness of citrus and white pepper which I usually find in highland tequila. Rather the citrus and pepper are blunted as the air above the glass also carried a subtle earthy quality which resembled aromas of baked zucchini and squash. I really like the aroma which seems to carry an abundance of light barely discernible nuances as well. Tea leaves, mild chocolate, mint and licorice are all hinted at in the breezes. Rounding out the aroma are impressions of mild butterscotch, a light oakiness and a light whisper of vanilla.

In the Mouth 57/60

Wow! This is absolutely fantastic! The earthy agave flavours carry a wonderful light sweetness which binds the agave and light woody flavours together. The result reminds me of a light agave oak syrup which is extremely easy to sip. Within the earthy agave I taste light caramel flavours, hints of vanilla, ginger and nutmeg, light oak tannins, bits of coffee and chocolate, and a smattering of tea leaves. The mouthfeel is just a little oily and the spirit carries a lovely underlying earthiness which compliments the spirit and all of its light flavour nuances. This is perhaps the best sipping tequila I have tasted to this point.

In the Throat 14/15

I am impressed by the smooth long finish. As the flavours ebb in my mouth a throat a nice build-up of pepper and citrus occurs reminding me that this truly is a highland agave spirit. Mixed with the highland spiciness are lovely echoes of chocolate and ginger. Truly Yummy!

The Afterburn  9.5/10

I remember when I opened my website and made the decision to include not only reviews of Rum and Whisky (spirits I was very familiar with), but to also include reviews of Gin Vodka and Tequila (spirits which at the time I encountered only occasionally). My aim was to allow my palate to experience a wider range of distilled flavours such that my appreciation of all distilled spirits would grow and hopefully my reviews would benefit as well. Today, I am very happy that I made that decision despite the criticism it generated. For if I had not decided to grow, I would never have had the opportunity to taste Roca Patrón Reposado Tequila.

This is not only one of the best agave spirits I have tasted to this point; it is also one of the best spirits I have tasted period. Do yourself a favour (whether you are a connoisseur of agave spirits or not) and pick up a bottle of the Roca Patrón Reposado, you will not regret it.

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

Arctic Wolf’s Tequila Old Fashioned

2 oz of  Roca Patrón Reposado
1/4 oz Manitou Orange Sumac Liqueur (Sub good quality Orange Liqueur)
2-3 drops Angostura Cocktail Bitters
2-3 drops Angostura Orange Bitters

Serve in a Rocks Glass with Ice

Please enjoy responsibly!

Note: If  you are interested in more of my original 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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