Wow, time really does fly by. Three years ago we reviewed the Reposado of this and mused about trying the Anejo in bourbon barrels. While we didn’t build up any expectations, sadly we were still let down kind of. The main issue seems to be that by ageing it in bourbon it’s oddly picked up harshness and isn’t the smooth sipping tequila it should be.
This truly is a worse of two worlds, the bourbon has not only made it less mellow in flavour, it hasn’t mellowed it elsewhere, and we get kind of a subpar/par tequila. They do have another version of this, which we’re likely to try in the future. (See us in 2021 we guess?)
What they Say: “Handcrafted in Los Altos, the highlands region of Jalisco, ESPOLON reveals the essence of Mexico. At its core is the spirit of the iconic rooster, a symbol synonymous with Mexico’s proud history. Out tequila is a tribute to the Mexican artist who inspired the world with their true portrayals of the rich, storied culture of Mexico. Crafted over a year-long process, our Anejo is aged in white oak before being finished in bourbon barrels. This gives the tequila its rich colour, and distinct, spirited flavour.”
Taste: 6.0 – That woody and agave flavour take centre stage and pretty much stay there.
Aftertaste: 4.0 – There is a distinct aftertaste, but it’s not wholly fantastic.
Burn/Smooth: 4.0 – It’s bizarre how they’ve done it, but it seems less smooth despite the ageing. The burn actively hampers the enjoyment of this.
Aroma: 7.0 – Based on the reposado there was hope this would be the more complex brother. Sadly it’s mellowed and weak. Still a mighty fine smelling tequila though.
Honesty: 6.5 – I love the art, and it’s nice they pay tribute to artists. The bourbon barrel ageing is unique for a tequila to earn some points. The bottle is also quite iconic, and there’s not a lot of wank. Overall it does just slightly worse then it’s younger sibling.
W/ Rocks: 4.5 – That is not a great sipping tequila, not horrible, but not great.
Tequila Sunrise: 5.5 – Disappears a bit too much where it’s not really adding to the flavour profile beyond booze.
Margarita: 7.0 – Actually it does quite well in a Margarita.
Value: 3.0 – There are a few shiny spots here, and at a full $10 more than the reposado it does more overall. That being said this isn’t a sipping or rock tequila. So when you get into the mixed drinks level – there are far better and cheaper options.
Google Shop Average: $34
Metric Score: 36.17/70 |+| Metric Average: 5.17 |+| Reviewer Average: 5.0
Final Thoughts: Well at least we delivered on a promise and hope we wanted to make so long ago. Back when times were simpler and the idea of a bourbon barrel aged tequila was exciting. Now, however, we may wonder if such a thing would work anyone. (Kidding, Espolon isn’t exactly the best)