Crafting an ultra-premium tequila brand requires a slew of essentials, including know-how, patience, and passion.
The powers-that-be at Tequila Gran Diamante, a new tequila brand that just hit the market, describe those essentials as a regime born of hard work, tradition and a location suited with optimum growing conditions for blue agave.
Distilled in Los Altos de Jalisco, the area and terroir are ideal for producing tequila, which is created using 100% blue agave grown in the red, rich volcanic soil in the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico.
At the distillery, they use an open vat fermentation with a strain of yeast formulated several decades ago to allow the natural accelerators during the fermentation to process. The Plata is rested 23-25 days in stainless steel sealed vats. The Reposado is rested in French oak barrels for eight months. And the Añejo is aged 18 months in French oak barrels to retain its rich character profile.
The Tequila Gran Diamante lineup includes Silver (Plata), Gold (Reposado), and Black (Añejo) tequilas. And visually, its finely sculptured bottles are eye-catching and a tease to the palate of what is to come.
Brand CEO Rafi Hannouche spoke to Chilled about the essentials of tequila-making.
Where did you come up with the name Tequila Gran Diamante (Great Diamond)?
One of the initial bottle design concepts had diamond/rhinestone embellishments, which inspired the name.
Who designed the bottle?
The bottle shape was inspired by a perfume bottle design. It is similar, but the design you see today is many iterations removed from the perfume bottle design. Under the bottle, there is a reversed pyramid, which is an element created by Charles Harris.
The brand is new to market, when did you start the company and when did you start the actual tequila-making process?
The company was started in 2015. The tequila making process started in 2016 with our catador and master distiller. The three expressions, Plata, Reposado, and Añejo, were developed concurrently. All three expressions were launched simultaneously in 2020.
Can you recall a hiccup along the way, something you weren’t prepared for that you had to adjust in order to move forward?
We tried to produce the bottle components and assemble the bottles in Mexico entirely. We have since had to produce the bottles elsewhere, and had assembly done in Mexico. This is still undergoing fine tuning with regarding to production timing, quality control, etc. Our advice to anyone wanting to enter the spirits industry for the first time is that they should work with people who have a proven track record, and align themselves with people who are seasoned professionals in the industry. Additionally, trustworthy “boots on the ground” in Mexico will go a long way towards streamlining and expediting the process of getting bottles to market.
What do you want someone’s experience with Tequila Gran Diamante to be?
When people take that first sip, I hope they realize they have found something different. Like a fine wine, Tequila Gran Diamante allows the expression “fine tequila” to now be circulated in the same fashion. And like a fine diamond, which undergoes many obstacles but comes out at the end delivering its glorious shine, it is our confidence that the purity and excellence of Diamante Tequila will be recognized and appreciated as an example of endurance, uniqueness, and “nothing but the best” by all who encounter it.