MODERN CRAFT TEQUILA
A trained engineer, Master Distiller Marco Cedano employs equal parts science and art. Together with son Rodrigo the two are leading a new revolution in tequila; one that respects old world knowledge and experience, while embracing what’s possible today. Looking to the world of bourbon, scotch and wine, they are experimenting with new techniques to harness the best properties of agave, giving Tromba its soft, premium, accessible taste.
Tromba is a product of Los Altos, in the highlands of Jalisco. At an elevation over 5200 ft, it is a land of rugged beauty, with a history of perseverance and pride. Los Alteños take their tequila making very personally. For Marco and Rodrigo, every element of the tequila making process is touched by their hands.
Tromba’s blue agave is harvested after 7 years, allowing the plant to mature and build complex flavors. Soil, climate, rainfall, topography, plant spacing and the tending of the fields all contribute to the characteristics of the agave. Marco and Rodrigo walk the fields selecting agave; measuring maturity and quality by color, shape, and condition of the leaves (pencas). Immature or sick plants are eliminated from the harvest.
To this day, all agave harvests are done by hand. Specialist tradesmen known as jimadores use a specific tool called a coa, to release the 70-80 lbs (35 kgs) piña from its base. To preserve their quality and retain flavor, the piñas — or hearts of the agave — must be cut with exacting precision. The traditional art of the jimador is a vital part of the process when crafting extraordinary tequila. How the piña is cut can greatly affect the flavor profile; cut too close and the result is a neutral flavor, lacking the vegetal highland terroir, too much and the botanical flavors become too dominant.
Every element, every person, every action in the distillation process is strictly controlled and choreographed by Marco and Rodrigo. The distillery is in the historic, highland town of Atotonilco, Jalisco. It meets the Cedano’s exacting requirements – a mix of traditional and state-of-the-art equipment. Innovative cooking methods have been developed to create a distinct caramelization of the agave. Tromba’s slower fermentation process results in a lower yield, richer in flavors and aromas.