San Matias is one of the pretty few tequila brands which is still family owned AND can trace their roots back to the very origin of tequila. Tequila is such an interesting industry for many reasons, but one of the reasons being it is very much focused around “family”. Lots and lots of tequila brands have a family at their very center. Sometimes the tequila production is passed from one generation to another multiple times. San Matias Tequila is one such brand and has delivered high quality tequila products for three generations.
TequilaList reached out to San Matias for a small interview:
Don Delfino Gonzalez – founder of San Matias must have been a contemporary of the Cuervo family. Did they know each other?
That’s right, they knew each other.
It seems that San Matias owned agave fields originally. Does the familys still own its own agave fields?
We have always owned a percentage of agave, because the rest we have required from the community to support local agave producers.
Was the San Matias destillery always called San Matias and what is the meaning of the name? It is seemingly a saint, but would you know why it was this specific saint?
Yes, since 1886 it has been called San Matías and the name is because that was the name of the ranch where it started in 1886. Not because of a saint.
How many generational shifts has San Matias taken since its foundation?
- Don Delfino Gonzalez
- Don Guillermo Castañeda
- Don Jesús López / Carmen Villarreal
San Matias has a great selection of quality products. Some high end and some for the cocktail crowd but still of very good quality. The last 10 years has witnessed a lot of consolidation in the market for agave spirits. Small brands being bought by bigger and production methods like the diffusors. Has it become more difficult to be on the market for smaller producers?
It has always been a challenge, we focus on having quality products and growing at the pace of markets where quality is relevant.
We really like the Tahona expression.
Tahona has become a popular production method to revive after it had nearly disappeared in the tequila industry. What do you think the tahona adds to the proces in terms of taste and aroma and why?
Being an artisanal process we focus on the interaction of nature, slow distillations, the metal interaction in the distillery process, water quality, highlighting fruit and herbal profiles.
Tahona products tend to be more agave-forward, earthy, and complex, but they also take a long time to make. For those who don’t already know, a tahona is a big stone wheel that crushes the cooked agaves and extracts the sugars from the fibers of the plant. This is a super old-school method that takes a lot of time and effort.
If you are on the lookout for a bottle of San Matias Tahona and you are in the Nordics, it can be found at Tequila.dk