Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Spirit Log: Ocho Blanco Tequila

Ocho Blanco and a friend. "Just pretend I'm not here,"- Lagavulin
A month or so ago I was trying to buy some tequila, and for some reason ended up trying the alternative Mexican spirit of Sotol. This time, with 10% off tequilas and mezcals at Drink Supermarket, I decided not to get distracted – a reasonably priced blanco was the brief, and that’s what I would get.
Now, 10% isn’t actually that much of a discount when you still have to add P&P on, but you also get cash back at Drink Supermarket if you’re a member of Quidco. The cash back is only on the product price before VAT, mind, so it’s still not a massive saving, but it was enough to convince me to spend just over 20 quid on 50cl of full agave tequila. I’d be needing something reasonably priced but [hopefully] good to take to Shelts’ pre-wedding get together. This would be it – Ocho Blanco – made from agave plants that are allowed to grow for 8 years before being harvested. It’s also 40%, which is a cut above a good number of other reasonably (and not so reasonably) priced tequilas.
When I mentioned I was bringing this along to Shelts’ do, he effectively turned his nose up. I wasn’t bothered at first, but then I thought that, as he’s the groom I ought to take something he can have, so I took the Lagavulin 16 too – which you can read about here next week. I was eventually able to persuade him to try the Ocho Blanco, but inspite of my insistence that he sip it, he flagrantly ignored my advice and just threw it down his throat and pulled a face, thereby receiving no benefit to trying full agave tequila. When will people learn to enjoy their spirits? Shelts is one of those people who once drank too much tequila and made himself ill, blaming the tequila ever since. Well, I did my best. I’ll let him live in ignorance from now on.
In all fairness, this isn’t the best low price, full agave tequila I’ve come across. There’s more agave flavour in Casco Viejo (my current favourite), and El Jimador, varieties that all retail around the same price or slightly cheaper, but there’s something extra fruity about this one. It doesn’t sting (which is something I expect from good tequila), but it is full flavoured. I want that sting though.
I’m not saying I wouldn’t buy it again, but in all likelihood, I probably won’t. There’s others I’d buy first, and there’s always plenty of other brands to try. But just because it doesn’t perfectly match my pallet, doesn’t mean it won’t be suited to yours – because I’m not saying it’s poor quality. It’s just a personal taste thing, and my personal taste ranks this at the bottom of all the full agave tequilas I’ve tried so far – but that still means it’s better than any mixto you’d care to mention.