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ArteNOM Tequila Anejo Seleccion de 1146

In the development of his ArteNom line of artisanal tequilas, Jake Lustig is driven by the desire to highlight, and exploit, the variations in terroir and distillation technique that characterize the different tequila producing regions within the state of Jalisco. So rather than a particular tequila brand's Silver, Reposado, and A�ejo offerings being simply the same juice with increasing barrel age, each ArteNom release is created at a different distillery, and specifically tailored to the soil, climate, and altitude where its agave is cultivated. The ArteNom A�ejo is distilled and bottled at the Destileria Tequile�as (NOM 1146) in the eponymous town of Tequila by Enrique "El Arquitecto" Fonseca. A fifth generation agave grower, Enrique decided to return to the family profession after earning his professional degree at the Guadalajara University of Architecture, and now presides over one of the largest private agave holdings and stocks of very old tequilas in the industry. The agave for the a�ejo is cultivated up the hill in the village of Atotonilco el Alto, altitude 4620'. A blend of pot and column still distillation, the tequila is aged (60% for 2 years, 40% for 3 years) in used Loire Valley Cabernet Franc barrels, then blended and moved to second-run Bourbon casks for another year. The result is spectacular: aromas of blood orange and smoked bacon dance around with black pepper, tobacco, bay leaf and graphite. The mouthfeel is rich but somehow remarkably tense, with a nice bloom of vanilla from that Bourbon barrel on the finish. Clearly superior in complexity and finesse to other, more well-branded a�ejo tequilas, this limited release bottle is worth exploring. 40% abv.