El Caballito Cerrero Anejo Chato Agave Spirit (750ml)
The Caballito Cerrero (“The one that doesn`t need horseshoes”) was created in 1950, by Don Alfonso Jimenez Rosales after he separated from Tequila Herradura, a company of which he was a founding partner. Establishing it in the Santa Rita factory built in 1873 by his father-in-law, Maximiano Hernandez Orozco, his son Claudio continued to produce tequila Caballito Cerrero until his death. It was not until 2018 that his descendants (the 15th generation of “vino mezcal” producers) took the decision to produce "Caballito Cerrero" as a standalone agave distillate, distinct from tequila and mezcal. The family ceased calling their product tequila, in defiance of the industrialization of the category, and as a mark of respect to the agave distillation traditions within the Amatitán region. The Jimenez family use only mature agaves, including both Azul, or Blue Weber (A. tequilana) and other varieties such as Chato (A. angustifolia), just as their ancestors have for fifteen generations. Caballito Cerrero remains a tiny distillery but one that has consistently been regarded as one of Mexico's finest. The relative elusiveness of their products has given them a 'cult' status among aficionados worldwide.
This expression employs the rare but traditional agave varietal "Chato" (Angustifolia). This squat agave is not uncommon in the valley around Guadalajara and would have been used in distilleries to produce spirit prior to the tequila "normas" being established in the middle of the 20th century. Chato's character is generally described as more vegetal than the Blue Weber and it shows here. The aroma opens sweet like a butter-menthol lozenge, alternating with a drier aspect that's mildly terpenic, herbal and woody. The palate is full bodied, with surprising intensity and vibrancy by Anejo standards. It manages to show off the best of both the agave and the wood, neither overwhelming. Butter textured with a superb mid palate burst of exotic agave flavours tempered by sweet smoke and wood spices, in moments, reminiscent of low-peat Islay whisky, with the kind of body and feel you associate with single malt. Butter menthol, pine shoots, vanillan oak and white pepper trail through the long peppery finish. An Anejo unlike any other.