Olmeca is a Premium Tequila produced in the volcanic Highlands in the centre of Mexico using traditional methods
Altos came from a collaboration who between two famous English bartenders. The late Henry Besant, is the only person to win back to back UK Bar of the year awards, and Dre Masso, who was UK Bartender of the year three times running. They first partnered together to run 'Green & Red’ in London, a pub that focused on agave instead of ales. It was so hard at the time to find really quality tequila at the price point they required, so the next step was to look at producing their own.
They travelled to Jalisco state on and off over three years to study the terroir of the different sub regions; the soil, climate, water and terrain that produce great agave plants. Unlike a grape or wheat crop, good agave takes 7-8 years to properly mature. That means the soil and growing conditions have more impact on the final product than any other spirit. The highlands area of Los Altos, at over 2100m, was where they settled. The red clay volcanic soil and elevation produces tequila that is more feminine, softer and rounder, with more fruit and citrusy characters than the dark and earthy lowlands styles.
The search for a distillery to partner with led them to Olmeca, which is situated in Arandas the unofficial capital of Los Altos. The brand was introduced in 1967, so has a long history in the region. They had the right land, and also still used many traditional production methods. Besant and Masso knew they wanted a 100% Agave Tequila (unlike most cheap ‘mixto’ tequilas that are only 51% distilled from the plant), so they collaborated with Olmeca Maestro Tequilero Jesús Hernandez, who manages every part of the production from harvesting to aging.