Jose Cuervo 250 Aniversario The Rolling Stones Special Edition Tequila Review

Photo courtesy of Jose Cuervo

Rounding out a couple of tequila reviews is a look at this ultra rare, super expensive gem – Jose Cuervo 250 Aniversario The Rolling Stones Special Edition.  How rare is rare?  Only 25 bottles were made available in December 2016 in the United States.  The price for such an offering?  $4,000 a bottle.

This bottling is part of the Rolling Stones Tour Pick collection from Jose Cuervo.  The company says the line pays homage to the company’s part in the Stone’s legendary 1972 tour of the United States, nicknamed the “Tequila Sunrise” tour.  I have a replica poster from that tour hanging in my whisky room, so I’m quite familiar (even though I was still years away from being born) with that tour.  It’s packaged in a great looking bottle with a 24 karat gold tongue logo, along with some golden spikes.  The entire thing rests in a leather-bound guitar case.  I haven’t even gotten to tequila and the Stones freak in me badly wants this.

As for the extra añejo tequila itself, it’s at least 3 years old, though some 100 year old tequila has been added to the final blend.  The agave was slow cooked for 72 hours and pressed once.  After fermentation and distillation, it’s been aged in French and American oak barrels.  The final blend was rested in a Spanish sherry cask for a year to marry the flavors and add a sprinkling of sherry influence.  

The nose is full of oak spice, with hints of vanilla, old library books, mushrooms, alongside some sherried fruit & nuttiness.  There’s a subtle layer of cooked agave in the background.  Taste-wise, the entry starts soft and gradually gains some spice. An intial caramel sweetness is accompanied by allspice, coconut, a grassy note, basil and a touch of stewed fruit. The long finish packs some vanilla and spice.  

What a wonderful product from Jose Cuervo!  This tequila offers some intricate flavors, the majority of which come from the barrels.  It’s seen three different types of barrels for extended periods of time.  It’s the most complex tequila I’ve tasted thus far, and it’s highly recommended to those with very deep pocketbooks.  9/10


Thanks to Jose Cuervo for the sample!  As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Santera Añejo Tequila Review

On the heels of last week’s Jose Cuervo Reserva de la Familia review, we’re following up with Santera, a semi-new brand of tequila here in the United States.  Santera was launched in fall 2015 and slowly rolling out to new markets.  This añejo tequila is aged up to 16 months in American oak barrels.  A small amount of 3-year-old tequila is added to the final blend for a touch of complexity.  A bottle runs a bit over $50.

Cooked agave is the major player on the soft nose, alongside hints of vanilla, light brown sugar and lavender.  Taste-wise, look for a nice balance of earthy and sweet.  I’m talking about hints of agave, barrel char, Mexican chocolate, ncandied orange peel, rose water and spice.  There is also a little grassiness.  The finish lingers for a while, leaving some charred agave and citrus.

I really like what’s in this bottle.  Though the barrel aging has brought about lots of vanilla and baking spice, there’s still enough character from the spirit coming through.  Nice.


Thanks to Santera for the sample.  As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Jose Cuervo Reserva de la Familia Tequila Review

Though I generally write about whiskey on this blog, I find it’s nice to sip on something else occasionally.  So, the next few posts will cover a couple of tequilas as well as brandy, gin and vodka.  Let’s start with Jose Cuervo’s Reserva de la Familia (which means ‘family reserve’).  This premium añejo tequila is released yearly.  Each release features a different wooden box adorned with art from a Mexican artist, with this year’s being Jose Mèndez Blake.  I’m a sucker for beautiful packaging and a nicely designed label, but they come in second to how the spirit tastes.

This extra añejo tequila has aged at least three years in French and American oak barrels.  As this tequila has aged in barrels longer than the average añejo, it has picked up some barrel influence.  How much?  Upon pouring my sample in the glass, it came across very much like a bourbon.  Vanilla and toffee sit on top of a rounded, herbal agave note.  It’s all wrapped around a soft bed of oak.  A very small hint of varnish pops up at first, but mostly disappears with a little air time.  The palate closely follows.  It is very clear this is aged tequila, as there’s cooked agave up front followed by vanilla, lemon rind and smoked caramel chews.  Small waves of spice, mainly cinnamon bark, occasionally show, but I wouldn’t call this a spicy tequila.  Instead, it’s rather easy going and slightly creamy.  The finish is a little warm, but mostly remains smooth.

Jose Cuervo Reserva de la Familia is a great extra aged tequila for folks looking for a something nice to sip on.  It is akin to, say, a Johnnie Walker Blue Label.  While there are better tasting tequilas out there for cheaper (I’ve seen this go anywhere from $100 – $150), this tequila is nothing to turn your nose up at.  I’m throughly enjoying this tequila and wish I had more than a small sample.  8/10


A small sample was provided for review.  As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.