Looking For A Tequila Alternative? Hacienda de Chihuahua Sotol Has You Covered

Hacienda de Chihuahua Sotol
Photo courtesy of Hacienda de Chihuahua Sotol

If you’re a tequila lover, but want to try something new or want an alternative, sotol might be the answer for you.

Sotol is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from the Desert Spoon plant (Dasylirion wheeleri), which is native to the Chihuahuan Desert regions of northern Mexico and the southwestern United States. It is similar to both tequila and mezcal, but it has its own unique characteristics and production methods. In summary, it is a delicious alternative to the usual Mexican alcohols you are used to. With that said, we introduce you to Hacienda de Chihuahua Sotol.

The company is a family-owned and -operated Sotol that is already sold in 22 US states and many countries. It has earned multiple internationally-recognized certifications, such as USDA certified organic, IMOcert and Kosher certification to name a few.

The brand is founded by José Daumas, whose distilling career began with a large French company providing base scents to famous perfumeries such as Bulgari and Dior. Soon after he traveled across the Mediterranean to Morocco creating industrial alcohol for medical purposes from grape seeds, in 1958 returning to his Mexican home to work for a small distillery using grape skins as raw material for its alcohol—his first work fashioning drink-worthy spirit. But France, with its Montpellier University as what was then one of the few places worldwide to learn to work with alcohol beverages, beckoned him to return.

In 1962 he graduated as an enologist, embarking to Cognac to distill for the noted Larsen brand and for Martell for 8 years, then north to Epernay to intern at its Moët & Chandon Champagne. Mexico had great need for such skills, so Daumas was lured by the large Bodegas Delicias to oversee brandy production in Chihuahua. A one-off chance to work with tequila came to him in 1981, his first opportunity to distill indigenous Mexican plants. Federico Elias approached him in 1989 to investigate the viability of working with Chihuahua state’s agave plants to create mezcal, and through this Daumas learned that the amount of agave here pales to that of the widespread sotol, a plant that’s native only to the Chihuahuan Desert.

“My main goal with sotol has always been to make a fine spirit from it, to take advantage from every element it gives and follow it carefully from its wild harvest through to fermentation, distillation, and resting before bottling,” says Daumas.

With Elias’ support, Daumas spent 5 years analyzing all aspects of this unheralded native succulent, its ideal harvest point and the best processes to apply to it. “Sotol’s aromas and flavors differ from agave’s tequila and mezcal, and these differences need to be respected,” he says. When in 1995 these solutions were agreed upon, they took their drink to a Cologne Germany’s Anuga drinks fair, receiving responses which encouraged them to develop the Hacienda de Chihuahua brand.

Hacienda de Chihuahua Sotol
Photo courtesy of Hacienda de Chihuahua Sotol

The Hacienda de Chihuahua brand has a number of offerings, from it Platinum Sotol to its Creme De Sotol Chocolate. Below are two of their popular offerings. For more info, visit Sotol.com.

Sotol Añejo: Extracted from 100% wild Sotol plant. 2 years of aged. Bottled from a French white oak numbered barrel. This fascinating drink has been triple distilled in a double column copper alembic, offering a higher degree of purity, which gives it an extraordinary richness in its exceptional and unique aroma and flavor, which is recognized by our master distiller in the beautiful and elegant bottle that distinguishes this award-winning presentation.

Sotol Reposado: Extracted from 100% wild Sotol plant, aged for 12 months in French white oak barrels. The Sotol bouquet begins with an exciting flavor, more floral than herbal, more vanilla; a little spicy; the middle stage passes without diminishment in aromatic strength, while the essence of vanilla and oak deepens, and the floral aspect fades. The end result is harmony and elegance. There is an under estimating complexity in Hacienda de Chihuahua´s Sotol that other spirits do not possess, intriguingly different; on the palate, the entree flavor is exuberant, both regal and gentle, flavors of wood and fruit dry greet the palate – on the mid palate it becomes more herbal like the Sotol plant does, complete with light notes of pepper and mild dill; the remnant flavor is luxurious and long, deep vanilla and oak flavors delight the palate. To give it credit, it offers an alternative that is simultaneously complex and elegant.

You May Also Like