Excellia Tequila is a relatively new player in the tequila category, and it’s making some noise due to its unique maturation process. The 100% agave Excellia Tequilas begin their life in the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico, where the estate grown blue agave plants are cut by hand and cooked slowly in traditional brick and stone ovens. From there, the cooked agave is shredded and crushed to extract the aromatic agave juice and then fermented in wooden vats and twice distilled in copper stills.
Most aged tequilas then sit in used whiskey barrels until maturity. But in producing Excellia Tequilas, the company splits the tequila between Sauternes wine casks and Cognac casks. After nine months, the master-blender marries the tequilas to create Excellia Reposado. It’s this dual aging — and the mingling of agave and grapes — that gives Excellia its unique selling point and character. That said, how does it taste?
The Excellia Reposado Tequila is floral and woody on the nose, with just a hint of earthy agave. Flavor wise, it’s smooth and subtle, with some honey, more floral notes, fruit and lots of wood. The mouthfeel is rich and luxurious, and it’s exceedingly easy to hold on the palate. It finishes long and dry, with some pepper and tobacco leaves.
Excellia Reposado is an interesting drink. The French oak influences add lots of character to the spirit, but that character seems to mute the tequila’s natural agave flavors. Some drinkers will marvel at its smoothness, while others will miss the vegetal agave bite.
Overall, it’s a pretty friendly tequila. It likely has some application in cocktails, but given it’s smooth nature and hefty price tag, we’ll continue sipping this one straight. And beyond the tequila itself, the bottle is a gorgeous addition to any bar.
– 40% Alcohol by Volume