Fortaleza Reposado (40% ABV) summary

Made to an age-old recipe using age-old processes and age-old equipment, this is an ultra-authentic tequila. Fortaleza Reposado is dry at points but also bursting with citrus, full of sticky sweetness with caramel and toffee ahead of orchard fruits.


What's the story behind Fortaleza Reposado?

The tequila we drink today owes a lot to the ancestors of the Fortaleza brand. Way back in 1873, Don Cenobio founded La Perseverancia distillery in Jalisco. He made a number of moves that have proved critical to the quality of tequila: steaming agave as opposed to using an earthen pit, deciding that blue agave is the best plant variety to use, and even shortening the name from ‘mezcal de tequila’ to ‘tequila’. Don Cenobio was also the first person to export tequila to the United States.

Don Cenobio's grandson, Francisco Javier, made his own significant contribution to tequila. Incensed at seeing 'Japanese tequila' on sale while on holiday during the 1960s, Don Javier led a group demanding to protect the term 'tequila'. Mexico granted such protection in 1974 , and the rest of the world followed in 1996.

The family business was sold in 1976, much to the dissatisfaction of Don Javier’s grandson, Guillermo. In 1999, Guillermo set about putting the family home’s distillery back into action. Eventually, Destileria La Fortaleza was up-and-running again, making tequila to the same recipe and processes that had been passed down through generations. Fortaleza Reposado may come at a premium price, but a lot of care and attention goes into each hand-blown bottle. The electric tractor that pulls a 2-tonne stone (used to crush the agave) is about as modern as it gets!

What does Fortaleza Reposado taste like?

On the nose, Fortaleza Reposado is dry and earthy at points but also bursting with squeezes of citrus. Sticky toffee and oak-smoked caramel are at the fore with apple and pear in the background, separated by a middle ground of cinnamon and nutmeg.

You can enjoy this tequila neat, or as a T&T. Simply mix tequila and tonic in a tall glass with a couple of large ice cubes, then garnish with a basil leaf to match those herbaceous notes.

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This review was last updated in March 2021. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability, please get in touch at