El Mayor Tradición
Entrusted with the destiny of his ancestors, Rodolfo Gonzãlez continues to create an exceptional line of tequilas in the tradition of his father and his father’s father.
“My grandfather did not take the tequila making process lightly.”
He believed that to craft a truly exceptional work of art you had to set the highest standards: use only the best raw product, implement the most intelligent, time-tested techniques, and instill in all of those around you a passion and pride in every aspect of the tequila-making process. Today we offer three varieties of El Mayor 100% agave tequila that would still bring that broad, knowing smile to my grandfather’s face, and will have you smiling in agreement.
The El Mayor process begins with the Mexican highlands rich red soil
With its reddish soil rich in minerals, temperate yet humid climate and increased level of precipitation, this distinct landscape sets the magic and mysticism of tequila. It begins with the Blue Tequilana Weber agave grown in the Highlands of Jalisco, where the natural conditions produce a larger, sweeter heart that will yield the unique characteristics demanded of El Mayor tequila.
The El Mayor agave plants are not grown from seeds but from mature agave plant shoots or baby agave. The baby agave plants sprout up close to the mother agave and grow away for approximately three years. These plants are called “First class seed” because they are better and healthier due to the mother’s strength and nurturing. The baby agave are then separated from the mother agave. The final step is planting with other baby agave plants in rich soil in straight rows approximately 3 feet apart and 6 inches deep soil.
Lush Agave Fields
Under the watchful, nurturing care of the Gonzãlez family-owned estate, the agave wait patiently for eight to ten years to reach their peak before they can be harvested. During the growing time, the plants are continuously inspected and cared for to ensure the best possible crop. Because the plants mature independently, they must be carefully and expertly evaluated to determine their readiness for harvest.
Jima, an art form requiring a deft hand and a strong back, has been nearly unchanged over the past century. Once the individual agave are selected and designated for El Mayor, they are ready for the harvest or “jima”. Only those practiced in the art are given the task of trimming the agave with a “coa” to reveal the heart of the plant. The long-handled, hoe-like tool is used to remove the distinctive leaves of the plant with perfect cuts, leaving behind the spherical, pineapple-shaped heart or “pina”.
Contemporary farm implements for carrying the precious pina cargo are rejected in favor of the method that’s been used for more than 125 years by the Gonzãlez family. The donkeys are able to traverse the steep landscape without affecting the narrowly planted rows of agave not yet ready for harvest.
Tradition dances with technology to produce a handmade work-of-art. In the state-of-the-art Gonzãlez factory, time-honored, traditional distilling methods are enhanced by twenty-first-century technology to ensure the highest quality, premium tequila. When the pina arrive, they are patiently slow-cooked for up to 16 hours at a constant temperature to heighten their sugar content.
A millstone is used to gently press the soft pina, extracting the precious honey juice in much the same way that it’s been done for a century.
For more than a century we have used a secret family recipe to produce a unique yeast that gives El Mayor tequila its distinctive flavor.
Finally, the El Mayor tequila is double-distilled. This process is slowly and carefully done in copper-lined pot-stills to achieve the superiority that sets this tequila apart.
Aged to Perfection
El Mayor Reposado and Añejo 100% agave tequilas are patiently aged in small, charred, white-oak barrels. Reposado ages for up to nine months and Añejo for one to three years.
No two bottles of El Mayor tequila are the same - each is hand bottled at the Gonzãlez Jalisco distillery in its sleek distinctive bottle. Every batch is hand labeled and numbered, each with Rodolfo’s own signature of approval.
The Final Blessing
Tasting is personally executed, and the El Mayor label awarded only according to the discerning palate of the master distiller. Before El Mayor is bottled or ready for aging, random samples are personally tasted by the tequila master Rodolfo Gonzãlez, as well as a distinguished panel of Maestros Tequileros, to ensure the high standards and consistency of the ultimate, premium product.