I find that tequila creates the strongest difference of opinion of any straight spirit. While people tend to agree on what makes a good gin, a good vodka, or even a good bourbon, when it comes to tequila, opinions on a given bottle tend to fall all over the map.
One case in point is Corazón, an artisan tequila which merits often glowing reviews, but which wasn’t my favorite tequila based on recent experience.
I tried all three varieties neat (as I normally drink tequila) but didn’t care for them much. I sat them back on the shelf for a day then tried again on the rocks, with considerably better results. I expect a squeeze of lime would improve all three even further.
Corazón Blanco is a pure agave tequila, uncomplicated by wood and overwhelming in its agave essence. This is a powerful tequila, with a hint of lime peel and a considerable amount of bitterness in the finish. As I mentioned, ice helps matters. B / $42
The Reposado is only lightly wooded and quite a pale yellow, but I found the addition of oak didn’t smooth out the tequila much at all. If anything, it was harsher than the Blanco. C+ / $45
Finally, the Anejo was a considerable improvement over the Reposado thanks to additional time in oak, but the Blanco’s bitterness makes a strong return showing here. Fortunately, it’s mellowed by wood and straw notes, with a strong nose of Bourbon-like caramel. Though you don’t want to dump this into a Tequila Sunrise, this is a tequila that made me think of the beach. B / $52
The inconsistencies in Corazón made me a little gun shy, but all three bottles’ price tags really gave me pause. Of course, as noted, your mileage may vary.