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6503 Local 49,
Zona E Concentro,
Sauza takes its name from Don Cenobio Sauza, the tequila pioneer who founded the brand in 1873, on the same site of the present day Sauza distillery. He was the first distiller to label his agave spirit ‘tequila’ - after the town in which he lived and worked, and the first producer to export the newly-named category to the US. Don Cenobio is also credited with technical innovations such as heating stills using steam coils.
One of the processes employed by Sauza particularly upsets tequila traditionalists. Sauza, and a few other tequila producers, now use diffuser equipment instead of cooking and then shredding the piña. In the diffuser, raw agave is ground and finely shredded before passing along a conveyor where the fibres are treated with steam and water in order to most efficiently extract the maximum possible amount of the plants sugars. The resulting wort is then fast cooked in pressurised autoclaves.
The use of diffusers means the piñas is cooked without the fibres, something which we, and others, believe dramatically affects flavour extraction. Tequila traditionalists also shun the use of fast-cook, high-pressure auto claves as it is believed that slow roasting produces a more flavoursome tequila.
Sauza use their own cultivated yeast strain for fermentation which occurs in closed tanks. The result of fermentation is a beer-like liquid called mosto and Sauza distil this in a modern stainless-steel column still. Sauza then make a second and third distillation in steam jacket heated pot stills. Traditionally pot stills rather than column still are used to distil tequila and most other tequila distillers manage to produce a fabulous product using just two distillations. We worry that the use of column stills and the third distillation creates a purer distillate with less character and if this trend continues we will end up with tequila that tastes like vodka.