El Tesoro means the treasure.La Altena Distillery
has been operated by the Camarena family
since … well, forever. Their first distillery was destroyed during the Mexican Revolution,
but they rebuilt it in 1937
near the town of Arandas in the heart of Tequila country.
“La Altena” does not translate directly, but it’s meaning is equivalent to “little highland lass.” Don’t you just love that? Some things are just the same across all cultures.
They still do Tequila magic old school with masonry ovens and an ancient Tahona mill stone. Today, La Altena distillery
is operated by grandson and master distiller Carlos Camarena
and they only make the good stuff, including premium brands El Tesoro, Tapatio, and Ocho. Muchas gracias mis amigos! The “brand” El Tesoro
is now owned by Beam Suntory,
but the Camarenas still do the heavy lifting.
One of the first things you need to know is that if El Tesoro
were a wine, it would be called an “estate” varietal—meaning that all aspects of product from growing the crop to aging are done on-site at their estate in Jalisco. Nothing brings more unique character than controlling every little detail, which they do. Two other things you need to know … it’s 100% blue agave
(the best stuff) and they do not even add water. They distill right up to 80 proof
and just stop, keeping more flavor in the spirit.
El Tesoro de Don Felipe Blanco
is a fabulous example of the sweeter style of Tequila
that they produce in the Los Altos region of Jalisco
. In Tequila-land, “blanco” means fresh or un-aged,
and this is one of the smoothest blancos
you’ll find. It is bottled within 24 hours of leaving the still so it retains all of its full flavor and—perhaps most importantly—its amazing aroma.
You will want to skip the lime and salt with this sipper so that you can savor every clean and natural drop of it.