Milagro Single Barrel Anejo: 40% abv
Background: We’ve already done a review of Milagro Silver tequila, so now we’re interested in looking at what Milagro is like with some age under its belt. This little beauty is one that I picked up in a shop on the east side of Michigan, and it was a limited production bottling. It is still very young at 18 months old, but it is fairly unique, and it does speak to what Milagro tequila can be with a little bit of craftsmanship. Milagro’s tequila is roasted in clay ovens in Jalisco, made from the “volcanic-rich” soil that is found there, as they put it. This is a triple-distilled tequila as well, and like all Milagro products, they’ve made the barrel too pretty to throw away (I’ll be throwing it away anyway). With all of that being said, let’s look at how this tequila actually performs.
Nose: The nose starts off fairly untraditional from tequilas we’ve had in the past. There is definitely a strong influence of agave in the nose, but along with this is a strong nuttiness; a mixture of peanuts and chestnuts. There is also a fruity sweetness to it coupled with vanilla extract, which is soft and mild. There is a slight anise aroma becoming apparent, but it is not over-dominant. A brininess is noticeable, which is strangely coupled with a slight vinegary pickle smell. This isn’t horribly prevalent, so don’t cringe at the thought. Some spices and herbs are in the nose as well, with subtle fresh mint and cloves.
Arrival: The arrival very smoothly starts off with a light, mouse-like entrance. There is definitely nuttiness, vanilla, and some weak salt flavor up front. There is some agave in the arrival, with a zesty spice as it goes into the body. There is some mint in the arrival, but it is relatively weak and more like a toothpaste fluoride. There is also a Laffy Taffy banana flavor to it. The arrival is relatively simple, but it does present some very interesting flavors to it.
Body: The body has a lot of saltiness to it, with strong agave flavor, and a prominent amount of nuttiness. There is some strong lime tartness in the body, with some slight vanilla and dry wood that sits in the background and adds some character. There is a little bit of pineapple tartness and bitterness that sticks through the later part of the body into the finish.
Finish: The finish does contain a little bit agave left over. The unique banana presence is now more creamy, like banana cream pie. The fluoride mint flavor is actually prevalent here, but it starts to taste more like natural spearmint as the finish continues forward. There is some roasted almonds in the finish as well. There is some light floral notes in the later part of the finish, which contains jasmine and lavender flavors. There is a little bit of dry wood that lingers as well. Finally, there is a spicy gingerbread and allspice mixture that can be found as well.
Nose: The nose, after add a small amount of water, starts to take on a little bit more grain flavor, with citrus notes like grapefruit and lime becoming more dominant. The spice is a little more noticeable, and the agave backs off a little bit. There is a bit of pine that comes through in the nose now as well. There is less chestnut, and more peanut in the nose after adding water.
Arrival: The arrival has more vanilla, and a little bit of barley malt flavor now. There is still some nice spice and smooth agave flavor as well. The arrival is also slightly savory at this point, although it is so subtle, it is hard to pinpoint.
Body: The body is still predominantly the same as before. The difference here is that the body has a slightly bigger tartness, almost like black cherry. The body is more dry and astringent, with some pepper-like bitterness running in the finish.
Finish: After adding water, the finish is really floral and woody, with dominant earthiness to it. There is some bitter rose flavor, with some more raw grassy notes. The agave is still here, but there is less sweetness and tartness. The nut is still noticeable. It is also significantly more dry than before. The vanilla now is sticking around a bit longer than before.
Final Comments: This is definitely a unique, fun tequila to try. It is prominently nutty and salty, with a variety of light complexities. Unlike a whisky, the complexities don’t scream at you, but they are still there. It isn’t hugely boozy or heavy, but it still has some flavor to speak of. It is an easy sipper, and it has a lot to offer, but it isn’t the most complex spirit in the world.
Why you’d buy it: For a fun, different tequila experience at an affordable price.
Why you wouldn’t: You don’t like salty nuts.