Espolon Tequila Review: Our Expert Thoughts

Espolon Tequila Review: Our Expert Thoughts

If the battalion of skeletons that adorn Espolon’s bottles caught your eye at your local bottle shop, you’re not alone. Having strong branding is essential to getting noticed and creating an identity, especially nowadays. But is Espolon tequila all style and no substance? Or do they live up to their promise to be a tequila for everyone?

You probably have a few questions before you’re ready to commit, so in this review, we’ll give you a rundown on this snazzy-looking tequila so you know what’s waiting for you inside the bottle. 

A Quick Look at Espolon Tequila

Espolon seeks to make traditional Mexican tequila with a proud sense of heritage by making what they call a “tequila for everyone.” Their tequila blanco is their most popular variety and the one we’re reviewing here. Here are the basic stats:

Overall Rating 3.5/5
Flavor 3/5
Value 4/5
Tasting Notes Agave, pepper, alcohol, citrus
Classification Tequila
Distillery Destiladora San Nicolas
Proof 40% ABV
Aged Unaged
MSPR $35/liter

Pros And Cons of Espolon Tequila

Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of a liquor is a good way to decide whether they would be at home on your shelf. Here’s a quick list of the things that are great and not so great about Espolon tequila blanco

Strong branding Somewhat bland
Affordable Strong alcohol flavor
Good for mixed drinks
Made with 100% real agave

What Is Espolon Tequila?

Tequila is a spirit made from mashed and fermented agave. For tequila blanco, once the fermented agave is distilled, it’s immediately bottled. Thanks to being immediately bottled, the tequila blanco is unaged, giving a crisper, brighter taste.

Espolon tequilas are considered highland tequilas, meaning that the agave they use as their base is ground in the highlands. Highland tequilas are noted for being sweeter and more delicate than their lowland counterparts, which tend to be earthier.

Is Espolon Real Tequila?

To be legally considered tequila in the US, a spirit must use a minimum of 51% blue agave. Some tequilas will use a mix of other sugars to make up the rest of the volume. However, premium tequilas should be made with 100% agave. Espolon’s tequilas are all made with 100% agave.

The ingredients and the processing behind Espolon all reflect the company’s goal to make an authentic Mexican tequila.

What Does Espolon Tequila Taste Like?

Espolon’s tequila blanco has many of the characteristics you would expect from a highland tequila, with an aroma featuring some floral and citrus notes. The flavor has a peppery taste that pairs with the main agave note of the liquor and the secondary citrus flavors. 

Unfortunately, the taste is a little bland overall, not fully delivering the complex bouquet you might be hoping for. The flavor is also a bit harsh, with a strong note of alcohol.

Espolon also produces some reposado (rested) and añejo (aged) tequilas. The time and methods of aging bring forth some different characteristics of the tequila, though the aged varieties tend to be a bit more expensive due to the greater time and care within their processing.

What Is the Alcohol Content of Espolon Tequila

Like most tequilas, Espolong tequila blanco sits at 40% ABV (alcohol by volume), or 80 proof. This makes it a strong alcohol, similar to many other spirits like vodka or whiskey.

Is Espolon Tequila Good?

While personal taste varies, Espolon tequila does offer good value overall, especially if you’re looking for a tequila that will work in a variety of cocktails. While some of the subtler characteristics may be more muted in this tequila, it has enough presence to stand up to most mixers.

The quality of tequila is higher than many others around the same price point, and the flavor profile is suitable for a range of uses. That said, if you prefer whiskey or bourbon like Woodford Reserve, there's a good chance that you won't like it.

Is Espolon the Best Tequila?

Espolon is a solid tequila to have in your home bar or to present to your host at a party. That being said, it is not the best tequila on the market. There are smoother, more sippable tequilas that don’t have a strong alcoholic taste as Espolon does.

That being said, many of these finer tequilas do come in at a higher price, so you may not want to use them as an everyday cocktail spirit.

How Is Espolon Tequila Packaged?

Bottles of Espolon are available in 375ml, 750ml, 1 liter, and 1.75-liter sizes. The bottles have tightly fitted stopper lids rather than a metal screw top, which helps keep the tequila fresher.

Espolon definitely has strong branding with the artwork featured on their bottle. The Día de Muertos-inspired artwork shows a skeleton army, with one soldier proudly riding a rooster (an important and beloved symbol of Mexican culture)  into battle. A celebration of Mexican cultural identity, the art style pays homage to the beloved Mexican artist and lithographer José Guadalupe Posada.

How Should You Drink Espolon Tequila?

The flavors and character of this tequila blanco lend themselves well to cocktails. Espolon works well in the classic margarita, a modern paloma, or even a vintage tequila sunrise.

Espolon can also be enjoyed as a shot or even on the rocks if that’s your favorite way of enjoying tequila. It’s not the smoothest sipper, so most people probably won’t enjoy drinking it neat.

How Much Does Espolon Tequila Cost?

Liquor prices can vary quite a bit between states and even between liquor stores. In general, though, you can expect to pay around $30 for a liter of Espolon tequila blanco.

Where Can You Buy Espolon Tequila?

Many major liquor stores across the US sell Espolon tequila. You can check through the brand’s official website to find a distributor near you. The tequila blanco is Espolon’s most popular variety, so many retailers that work with the brand will stock it.

If your local liquor store does not sell it, you can always see if they will make a special order for you. You can also order the spirit through online services like Drizly.

Is Espolon Tequila a Good Gift?

For someone who is exploring mixology, Espolon’s many cocktail possibilities may make it a good gift idea. Similarly, if someone you know is ready to move on from tequila that requires salt and lime to make it bearable, this tequila is a nice step up.

It’s also a nice tequila to bring to a party where folks are mixing their own drinks. However, if you are buying for a true tequila aficionado, Espolon tequila blanco may be a bit basic.

Where Are Alternatives to Espolon Tequila?

While Espolon does a lot of things well, it may not be the right tequila for you. Fortunately, there are many tequila blanco options to explore.

At a similar price point, Goza tequila blanco offers a smoother experience. It has clean and fruity-tasting notes with a spicy aroma. The process of triple filtering makes this tequila better suited to sipping, but it can still hold its own in many favorite tequila cocktails as well.

For someone looking to level up their tequila game, Nosotros’ tequila blanco offers an extremely complex tequila that can stand on its own. This tequila blends highland and lowland agave to take advantage of both their strengths. Like Espolon, it has peppery notes but with a more well-rounded bouquet of citrus, vegetal, and herbal flavors.

Don’t Get Salty, Enjoy Espolon Tequila

tequila being poured into shot glass with limes and salt and shot glasses in the background

While most of us are introduced to tequila as a shot to endure rather than a liquor to enjoy, the world of tequila is a wide one. Espolon tequila will elevate your tequila game by being the star of many delicious tequila cocktails. With its inoffensive flavor, it can be used in a variety of ways.

Espolon tequila blanco isn’t the best tequila for sipping, but for many folks, it will be a good addition to a home bar. Good enough to enjoy, but not so special you feel quilt making a margarita with it. And if you are looking to level up even further, there are even more unique tequilas to try with smoother and more complex flavor profiles.

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