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DeLeón Añejo: The Ultimate Agave

Richard Carleton Hacker

If nothing else, the individually numbered, thick French glass bottle with the etched “D” and its correspondingly heavy gold-filigreed Bill Wall–designed cap intertwined with symbolic Mexican skulls and snakes says this is no ordinary tequila. In fact, it is one of the most extraordinary añejos to come out of the Jalisco highlands. Distilled by an affluent family for their private use (their identity, distillery location, and processing methods are closely guarded secrets), DeLeón Añejo ($175) is now being imported into the United States in very limited quantities. Double distilled using only the first pressings of agaves grown in the mineral-rich soil of the family’s estate, the deep amber-gold hue of DeLeón Añejo is the result of 17 months spent in new French oak, plus further aging in barrels formerly used for Château d’Yquem and Cheval Blanc. The result is a Cognac-like texture enveloped by a subtle throaty purr reminiscent of an Aston Martin V8 Vantage. This is one añejo best sipped from a snifter after dinner. (www.DeLeontequila.com)

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