Tequila Centinela Añejo
Tequila Centinela Añejo is bottled only after being aged for close to 30 months in previously used bourbon barrels which produce the natural gold color and rich flavor.
Tequila Centinela was established in 1904 and was the first distillery located in Arandas, Jalisco. Centinela means "the one to watch and keep".
The process has not changed; we combine tradition with top technology to ensure the consistency in our products. Our Agaves take approximately 8 years to mature, and are hand-picked at their peak from our own Agave fields. We also buy 20% from local producers to help the region's economy. Our Jimador's are hired as full time workers and are paid a salary. The Jimador's are trained to cut the pencas extremely close to the pina to prevent any bitter flavors during cooking.
We take our time cooking the Agave as this is crucial in our tasting profile. We use a clay oven (compared to others that use stainless steel ovens) that gives our cooked Agaves a smoky flavor, and a sweet after taste. Tequila Centinela slow cooks with steam and this process takes approximately 24 hours. In the first 4 hours we get, by gravity, some liquids from the cooked agave that we discard, to eliminate impurities and "the amargo" (the bitter). The cooked Agave is then allowed to settle and cool for an additional 24 hours.
For the extraction or the grinding process, we have 2 mills with 5 press each, they crush and wash the fibers in a gentle way. The reason is not to tear the fibers so they don't release bad flavors in the juices (other distilleries use more industrial machinery for this process, like the "diffusor" that cooks and rinses the Agave in one process, it saves time, but it compromises the flavor). The extracted juice is called "Aguamiel" (honey water), and is very sweet with high sugar content, which is what is needed to create alcohol in the fermentation process. The "Aguamiel" goes to the fermentation; Our yeast is natural and it comes from the environment, and is controlled. This process takes from 3 to 5 days, as the yeast starts converting the sugars into alcohol.
The first distillation is called "destrozamiento" (5 hours), we get rid of the "heads and tails" (colas y cabezas) and the heart in this process is called "ordinario". The second distillation is called "rectificacion" (10 hours), again we cut the "heads and tails", and now the heart of the second distillation is called Tequila.
Once we have our Tequila ready it goes to the aging room, and each of our products is differentiated in this process according to its tasting profile. We age our Tequilas in previously used 200 liter American White oak bourbon barrels.