Stoli Group announced last week the introduction of Cenote Tequila marking the first time the spirits organization has created a new brand from start to finish. Inspired by the spectacular limestone cenotes scattered throughout Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, Cenote is a 100% Agave Azul Tequilana Weber tequila. Master Distiller Arturo Fuentes and Master Blender Alejandro Garcia Páez manage the entire process at Fabrica de Tequilos Finos, located at the foot of Tequila Volcano in Jalisco.
At launch, the line will comprise of Blanco, Reposado and Añejo expressions, made with volcano water sourced from an artesian well located on the distillery’s grounds. The water goes through reverse osmosis and carbon filters with silver ions to eliminate the chance of impurities. It is fermented in stainless steel columns before undergoing double-pot distillation through a combination of copper and silver stills – a process that preserves the natural flavors of the top-quality agave used. The entire range is aged in American Oak Bourbon Barrels.
Cenote Tequila Blanco mellows for three weeks before bottling, adding bright citrus and pepper notes from contact with the wood. The Reposado expression is aged for three months, delivering a round, harmonious palate of vanilla, wood, spice, and green vegetable. Cenote’s Añejo expression is aged for one year, giving it a deep, amber color and producing a smoked, woody nose and vanilla, spice and chocolate notes on the palate. Each barrel is personally nosed and tasted by the Master Distiller before it’s blended by Alejandro Garcia Páez and his team. Earlier this year, Añejo and Reposado were awarded Gold Medals, and Blanco was awarded a Silver Medal, in The Spirits Business Tequila & Mezcal Masters.
Stoli Group Global CEO Hugues Pietrini said, “We see great potential for Cenote Tequila, which allows us to step into a very dynamic category, as consumers have discovered sipping-grade tequilas. With Cenote, we are looking to recruit younger, urban consumers into both the tequila category and our super premium portfolio.”
Arturo Fuentes has spent more than 35 years producing tequila and most recently in France distilling Cognac. He added, “After many years of producing tequila, we feel like with Cenote we finally got the tequila we’ve been looking for. We hope that this is a tequila that brings people together.”
Cenote™ Tequila comes in a blue bottle adorned with vivid Yucatán illustrations and Mayan glyphs, honoring Cenotes and Chaac, the Mayan rain deity. Cenote Blanco comes with a suggested retail price of $34.99. Cenote Resposado has an SRP of $39.99. Cenote Añejo has an SRP of $39.99