Kelly's 2012 Mexico Tequila Tour

March 09 - El Columpio & Casa Noble distilleries

<< 03/08    Index    03/10 >>

No agua caliente in the shower again. I checked, thinking the hot/cold handles were reversed. Neither got hot. After talking (in my broken Spanish) to the front desk, they told me the handles WERE reversed, and they say I should wait 10-15 minutes for the water to get hot! Great. I'd waited only five, which seemed like an eternity.

Before, during, and after breakfast, I wandered around the little town of Tequila. The museums were closed, but I got some nice photos of the town square and neighboring areas.

There's a little distillery that some of us went to- El Columpio. Others didn't want to go; a taxi ride was involved. But it was well worth it- Some tequila productions are large, some small. This was TINY. It didn't yet have a certification from the CRT, so it's not quite legal for export. But they made good products, which they sold in their showroom. This showroom was also the living room of the owner's house. We waited while they filled some bottles (one of which was another 55% alcohol blanco) and put labels on them. At least they had tamper-proof caps on them; the bottles at G4 didn't yet even have those.

After we'd all regrouped at the bus, we headed off for Casa Noble. This is a large distillery, which is part of an even larger producer, La Cofradia. But Casa Noble is large enough to have power and autonomy to make their products the way they want. And they do a great job- Casa Noble is my favorite, and this is the one distillery I absolutely had to visit. I hadn't realized just how LARGE La Cofradia is- Casa Noble is pretty huge in itself, and even has its own resort on the grounds. (Remember that bottle that was given to me when my G4 bottle broke? It was from La Cofradia)

Casa Noble has recently partnered with Carlos Santana. Unlike some celebrities who have latched onto just any tequila brand in efforts to capitalize on the growing tequila trend, Santana looked for one that'd reflect his beliefs and directions. Casa Noble uses only top-quality French Oak barrels from Taransaud and they're extremely green in their production methods, both from a perspective of sustainability and waste management. Casa Noble's view of being organic is not just refusing to use fertilizers and chemicals. They manage any wastes produced- All solids are composted on concrete-lined areas so nothing leaches into the soil, and any wastewater is sent to evaporation tanks. This could be a model for any agricultural production.

We saw a terrific underground stage and nightclub, the full production facilities, and some of the resort. What a place! Dave Yan gave us a wonderful tour, let us taste some things not on the market, asked our opinions of what we'd like to see, provided a terrific snack with great munchies and of course lots of tequila, and even gave us each a signed bottle of a tequila that is not only not on the market, but it may never be available commercially. A treasure indeed!

Afterwards Dave joined us for dinner at a nice open air restaurant, which had great food and a spectacular view. We looked out over what seemed to be a miniature Grand Canyon, the Tequila volcano, and the weather was perfect for showing off a nice sunset and moonrise. A banner day!

A week into the trip, and my insides are feeling better, though not 100%. The ice cream, dinner, and gatorade seem to be helping.



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