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Patrón has been a leader in the premium tequila category for many years now, and it continues to expand its portfolio with new releases like smoky tequilas and blends of different ages. The latest of these is called El Cielo, which the brand claims is the first “prestige tequila” to have been distilled a total of four times—which, yes, is more than usual.
First let’s break down what that language actually means. “Prestige tequila” essentially just refers to really high-priced tequila, even more expensive than the already premium expressions that make up the core Patrón lineup. As far as the number of times this new release is distilled—usually tequila is distilled two or maybe three times. Repeated distillation is more often associated with vodka, which can be distilled upwards of 10 times, and is frequently an attempt to strip out flavor to create a more neutral spirit.
But according to Patrón master distiller David Rodriguez, this fourth distillation of the brand’s silver tequila had the opposite effect. “For the first time ever, we developed a prestige tequila with a fourth distillation—a process that is extremely rare within the industry—using the smallest copper pot still at Hacienda Patrón,” he said in a statement. “While adding another stage of distillation is commonly misconceived as a culprit for diluting flavor, that was not the case for El Cielo. At Patrón, our goal is to achieve perfection in every drop—by using this unique, four-time distillation process, we unlocked and opened up the natural sweetness and smoothness from the agave to deliver an incredibly sweet and light tasting, smooth tequila.”
El Cielo may not be the only tequila out there that’s been distilled four times, but it is an outlier in the category. We have not had a chance to sample it yet for ourselves to see how it compares to other Patrón expressions, but according to the official tasting notes the palate leads with sweet citrus and agave, followed by a bright and smooth finish. That’s a little vague, but the brand recommends sipping this tequila instead of using it in cocktails—but that is, of course, entirely up to you. Patrón El Cielo is just rolling out now with an SRP of $129, and you can find it on sale at websites like Drizly if you really want to see what an extra couple of distillations does to tequila.