There’s no bigger challenge in spirits than convincing someone in their 20s that tequila tastes good, but it only takes one sip of Partida Tequila to change their melodía.
Premium tequila has started to become more popular among us regular folks, and Partida Tequila is a perfect example of why. It’s actually enjoyable to drink. There’s no hurry to dump it down your throat as fast as possible, and you certainly don’t need to be armed with a lime or salt. That’s right, tequila can actually taste good. Who knew?
What sets Partida apart is their control over the entire process. All of the blue agave used is grown on their own site, making it much like a single estate wine. They are the farmers and the distillers, which is reminiscent of a Mitch Hedberg joke but would totally ruin the punch line. They grow the agave to their exact specifications, harvest it by hand, and keep only the best for themselves. That last part is just an assumption, but why give another brand your best product?
I rarely drink blanco tequila straight, but it’s always a good starting point to get a feeling for the spirit. You can tell a lot about the aged product by how good the unaged is. Partida’s is clean and crisp. The agave tastes pure and bright, and it will really make you appreciate the plant you once feared. It’s slightly peppery and lingers in a way that makes you want to hurry to your next sip. It’s incredibly smooth and most certainly won’t lead to tequila-face.
A great base product will usually lead to an equally excellent aged spirit unless something goes horribly wrong. Thankfully this isn’t Partida’s first rodeo. The Reposado is aged for six months in Jack Daniels barrels. That’s three times longer than legally necessary but about average for high end Reposados. This gives the spirit some amazing complexity and a wonderful silky feeling on the tounge. They also managed to limit the smokiness that usually comes along with a Reposado, which often hides the great agave flavor.
The Partida Anejo might be one of the best in the business. It’s aged for 18 months in Jack Daniels barrels, which is something I’m sure Harley Morenstein could get behind. Even after 18 months, the roasted agave still manages to announce itself right from the jump. The sweet spice that can be found throughout the Partida line also really stands out in the Anejo. While that might not be good for some, if you like spirits with a little pepper to them, this is a must try.
Partida Tequila doesn’t come cheap, at $50, $58, and $67 as you move up through the line. If you’re looking for tequila that’s actually worth drinking though, this is a great option. It gives you all the best parts of tequila with none of the downside (except price). I didn’t try any cocktails, but the flavors are absolutely big enough to stand up in a tequila manhattan or any of the fancy Meixcan drinks I can never remember.