Wednesday, September 15, 2010

7 Leguas distillery Tour

In 1999 I tasted a blanco tequila made by 7 Leguas, and it was amazing!  It was fresh, crisp, sweet, and earthy, and it changed my life.

7 Leguas was founded in 1952 by Ignacio Gonzalez Vargas in the town of Atotonilco, Jalisco.  Currently Ignacio's son, Juan Fernando runs the company and takes great pride in continuing the tradition and passion his family has for making tequila.  Not only does 7 Leguas make a tasty traditional tequila that is crafted with artisan methods, but they are really great and hospitable people.  I have had the chance to tour their distillery and to visit with Juan Fernando and his crew 3 times, and it is always a day to remember!


 7 Leguas Master Distiller, Arturo Valle-Salcedo and ownder Juan Fernando Gonzalez de Anda  

The Ovens

Copper stills

On our visit in 2008, not only did we taste the entire flight, but we also got to taste some special 6 year añejo that is not on the market.

But what was really special -- memories of a lifetime special -- was when Juan Fernando left the room for a bit and came back with this 3.5L bottle of blanco that was in storage since his dad distilled in back in the early -mid 1970's.  It was the most amazing tequila that I have ever tasted!  

Needless to say, I was honored to get the last pour, and the very last drop from  that bottle!



During the 2008 tour we had the privilege to sign one of their barrels that was around 6 years of age. When we came back a year later in 2009, they surprised us by tapping into that barrel.  The 2 bottles on the right are watered down to 40%, while the beaker on the right is cask strength.  This stuff was mighty good!

Fresh from the "old skool" still @ 55% -- beyond awesome!


Arturo, myself, Juan Fernando, and a gifted bottle of some tasty 7L añejo!



It's 2010, and we're glad to be back!  L-R; blanco (fresh from the still @ 55%), blanco, reposado, añejo, D'Antaño.  7 Leguas does not rechar their used American whiskey barrels, so all of their products are pretty light in color for how long they are aged for.

for those who were on the 2008 tour, we were asked to come back to the barrel room and watch Arturo tap "our" barrel again!

Almost a full year went by from the first time we tasted it to the next, and what a year it was! Aged for around 8 years, it went from really good to AMAZING!!!!  We had it at cask strength, which was 64% (128 proof), and it was to die for!!!  It starts off as chocolate and mint, then more honey and cherry notes show as it opens up, and of course there was plenty of agave to go around!  The texture starts creamy then finishes dry.  It tastes as good as it looks -- Just beautiful! 

Many special thanks to everyone at 7 Leguas; your hospitality, passion, and tequila are just amazing!!!

Go big, or go home...

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