Glass Brasserie at the Hilton Hotel in Sydney hosted an Evening with Casa Herradura, with four courses paired with various expressions of Herradura Tequila. The evening was presented by Stuart Reeves, Brown Forman Ambassador, who introduced the agave spirits, including a special release, the first time to be tasted in Australia.
Stuart Reeves, Brown Forman Ambassador
Casa Herradura dates back to the 1870s but the distillery has been around for much longer. The town is located in the lowlands of Jalisco at the base of the volcano. The style of tequila is typical of the lowlands, vegetative and spicy with white pepper and a warm finish.
A Tommy’s Margarita was served on arrival, a mix of Herradura Plata, agave syrup, lime juice on ice before guests sat down to four courses from the Glass Brasserie kitchen introduced by Sous Chef, Peter Cassidy.
Oyster, Tequila Jelly, Smoked Chipotle, Salmon Roe, Coriander with Tommy’s Margarita
The first course was an oyster duo with Tequila Jelly, smoked chipotle, garnished with salmon roe and coriander and it paired well with Tommy’s Margarita.
L-R: Verdita, Tequila, Sangrita
This was followed by the Bandera in the colours of the Mexican flag with Verdita (green), a mix of pineapple juice, lemon juice, coriander, mint and jalapeno, Herradura Plata Tequila (middle), and Sangrita (red) made with tomato juice, lime juice, salt and pepper, hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce. This idea is to sip from all three glasses alternately.
L-R: Herradura Plata, Reposado, Anejo
Herradura Plata is the longest barrel-aged white tequila and falls in the same category as tequila blanco and silver. It is slightly off clear in colour due to ageing for 45 days in American oak barrels. Plata is a blend of 85% lowlands agave with 15% highlands agave. Typical of lowlands tequilas, it is big and spicy, rugged and vegetative in character.
Scallop Ceviche with Uni, Green Tomato, Jalapeno, Coriander with Herradura Plata
The tequila was paired with an elegant dish of thin discs of scallop ceviche topped with sea urchin roe, and a glaze of lime juice with jalapeno, green tomato and coriander served with bread stick made with jalapeno and sea salt. The melee of delicate flavours and textures worked well with the spirit.
Next on taste was Herradura Reposado, aged for 11 months in ex Jack Daniel’s barrels. Up until 1974, it was the only reposado in the industry. In present times, 85% of the tequila consumption in Mexico is Reposado, favoured for its sweeter elements.
Glazed Pork Cheek, Smoked Kingfish, Roasted Peach and BBQ Sauce with Herradura Reposado
The Reposado has more vanilla flavours, with honey, caramel and toasted oak character which is not tannic or bitter. The spirit was perfectly matched with the Glazed Pork Cheek, Smoked Kingfish, Roasted Peach and BBQ Sauce. The oyster of the pork cheek was slow-cooked at 62 C for 12 hours. The kingfish was smoked for 8 minutes, then rested, flaked and lime aioli was added. The sweet smoky dish was a great match with the vanilla and oaky character of the tequila.
Charred Rangers Valley Beef Short Rib with Honey and Vinegar, Beets, Black Garlic with Herradura Anejo
Moving along in age, Herradura Añejo is aged for 25 months in new ex Jack Daniels barrels that are toasted and charred – a process that is repeated each time the barrels are used. Described as the “most whisky-esque tequila in the range”, it has predominant oaky flavours that are reminiscent of whisky.
The Añejo is matched with Charred Rangers Valley Beef Short Rib with Honey and Vinegar, Beets and Black Garlic. Tender and pink, melting in the mouth with honey sweetness, the meat goes well with the oakiness and bold flavours of the aged tequila.
Herradura Seleccion Suprema
Herradura Seleccion Suprema is an extra añejo, the newest tequila category created in 1996. Aged for 49 months in heavily toasted and lightly charred barrels, the spirit drinks like a dark rum. Due to the heat, maturation is fast and with 40% angel share loss, tequila cannot be aged for too long. On the nose, it is an aromatic tequila, sweet with vanilla, caramel and floral aromas. Bold, oaky and very smooth on the palate, it makes fine sipping at the end of a meal but loses the prominence of the agave flavours.
Chocolate, Raspberry, Salted Peanuts, Caramel Popcorn and Peanut Butter Ice Cream
Herradura Seleccion Suprema was perfectly paired with a decadent dessert of Chocolate, Raspberry, Salted Peanuts topped with crunch Caramel Popcorn and a side of Peanut Butter Ice Cream.
Herradura Cognac Cask Finish Reposado Reserva 2013
The last tequila to be presented was a special tasting, and an Australia first. Herradura Cognac Cask Finish Reposado 2013 vintage release is a Colleccion de la Casa, sold only in bars. This the second in the cask finish series, the first being a barrel port finish.
The spirit starts as an 11 months old reposado which is then aged for 3 months in Cognac barrels that come from the Grande Champagne region. The casks are toasted but not charred to preserve the Cognac character. On the palate, the spirit has less body than the ordinary Reposado. The earthiness and spice of Herradura are evident but on the finish, it has vanilla and caramel from the Limousin oak with a sweeter, smoother and softer finish.
Glass Brasserie, Hilton Sydney
The Evening with Casa Herradura at Glass Brasserie demonstrated a fine partnership between the agave spirit and fine cuisine, from the delicate flavours of elegant seafood with white tequila to more complex and robust dishes, giving a renewed appreciation for the Mexican spirit.
Photography © by Kevin Burke for Gourmantic – Copyright: All rights reserved.
An Evening with Casa Herradura was held at Glass Brasserie, Hilton Sydney on Tuesday 25 February 2014.
488 George St
Sydney, NSW 2000
This article is posted on Gourmantic.com - All rights reserved - Copyright © 2016.