We’ve been writing about Corazon’s special edition tequilas, which are aged in some of Buffalo Trace’s most prized whiskey casks, for a solid nine years. Unlike the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection, the tequilas change from year to year. 2013 — when this collaboration was introduced — is the last time we tasted one that spent time in George T. Stagg barrels. Like that 2013 release, this one’s also a 22 month old anejo that spent its entire aging time in the Stagg casks.
While Corazon released four tequilas this year (including one aged in Weller and one in Elmer T. Lee barrels, plus a blanco — you can see them all in the photo above), we only received this one for review. So let’s dive in. Note that per the label this was actually bottled in July 2020, suggesting that this stock might generally be sitting around and that the last couple of years of releases are all from the same production batch.
Never mind that, though. This is really a gorgeous tequila that showcases how a quality barrel can really change the game when it comes to aging. The Stagg barrel must be quite old and spent of its woodiness, because the finished tequila is a pale shade of yellow — common for this series. In lieu of intensity, the tequila shows delicacy and nuance, with notes of buttered popcorn, caramel flan, and grinds of white pepper on the nose. Lively, with floral notes — slightly dried — emerging as the tequila develops.
On the palate, no big surprises, though the pepper feels stronger, tempering the sweeter qualities in the spirit. Baked apples, laced with butter, vanilla custard, and a light squeeze of lemon dominate, brown sugar notes lingering well into the lengthy, supple finish. Light on its feet — again, this does not evoke Stagg whiskey in the slightest — the finish is creamy, sweet, and inviting, crème brulee made liquid.
All told, it’s another top shelf anejo from this always exciting collaboration.
80 proof. NOM 1103. Reviewed: Barrel #012.