Trent Fraser Talks Volcan Tequila
From Volcano to Möet
photos courtesy of Owen Kolasinski/BFA.comTequila might very well be the greatest spirit ever bottled. With the one simple truth that we believe its stimulant in the world of spirits, tequila really is a happy drink. Imagine now, a tequila so refined and prestigious, it has the clean, crisp nose of agave with a finish that is both complex and silky. That is VOLCAN. A higher end tequila in the lineup of options, Volcan is the terroir dream child crafted by nature, perfected by the Gallardo family, exemplified by Ana Maria Romero Mena, brought to life by Moët Hennessy. Recently launched in the states, I had the pleasure of attending the official launch party with Volcan CEO and President, Trent Fraser. Trent can best be described as debonair, laid back, passionate, and incredibly well spoken. So when you start talking to him about the introduction of Volcan? His eyes light up and he can’t help but share the story of its inception, its journey, and the vision for the brand itself.
The evening begins with a musical performance by Trios Ellas (a gorgeous trio of folk meets mariachi) in the bar area before ascending to the lush landscaped rooftop of Petit Ermitage. A haven of rust and melon colored lounge chairs adorn the small but chic space, the infamous pool is lit with candles nestling in the cove of a reclaimed wood plank, fresh Mexican cuisine is set out ready for the feasting, and the fluid, sensual stylings of KCRW DJ, Aaron Byrd fill every pocket of beautiful space. Yes, this evening was designed for sipping tequila, experimenting with creations being poured behind the bar on the lower terrace, an oversized wall of lush greens inviting you to have some fun behind the camera, and the experience of learning about a brand that will elevate the echelon of tequilas on the market. The evening was filled with Hollywood faces – models, influencers, actors, you name it – all flocking here to celebrate the tequila born of agave, revitalized by volcanic mountainous terrain. In other words, this is no ordinary tequila …
What was the very first exposure you had to Volcan de Me Tierra Tequila?
We saw many properties before we found the perfect location: a distillery set with the backdrop of the volcano named, Tequila. The Tequila volcano erupted over 200,000 years ago and the volcanic soil shaped the entire terrain and fertilized the land, which made it prime for agriculture. Since then, agave has been one of the main crops of the region. Coupled with the picturesque backdrop of the volcano from the distillery, it was a beautiful and natural location to choose for our new tequila.
Was it love as first sip?
It actually took quite a while to find the perfect blend for Volcan’s Blanco and Cristalino expressions because our Maestra de Tequila was determined to keep perfecting the spirit. There were over 125 reiterations of the Blanco and Cristalino, playing with different elements such as cask maturation and ageing, agave selection and yeast strains, that affected the outcome each time. We never had a bad sip, they only got better and we landed on a combination for the Blanco and Cristalino that really emphasized the terroir.
Tell me a little about the female distiller.
Ana Maria Romero Mena, our Maestra de Tequila, is a true expert in her field. She brings years of experience of distilling expertise to Volcan and has done a fantastic job paying homage to the land and people of Mexico while developing our tequila.
What was the moment you knew you wanted to be a part of it?
Outside of being just a part of my career, wine has always been a long-time passion of mine. As a result of being in the beverage industry I’ve seen the tequila category take-off and grow tremendously over the past few years. I wanted to be part of something new and entrepreneurial with Möet Hennessy and am glad that we have been able to create Volcan De Mi Tierra and introduce our vision and the liquid itself to the US. And as my friends know too well, I happen to have been a closet tequila lover for a very long time.
What is the volcanic aspect of Volcan?
The history for Volcan De Mi Tierra started over 200,000 years ago when the volcano, appropriately named Tequila, erupted and covered the area in rich volcanic soil. Fertilizing the land for prime agriculture, the distillery for Volcan De Mi Tierra sits in the lowlands, at the foot of the volcano, where 100% blue agave from both the low- and high-lands is grown and used to produce our expressions.
What would you say is the significant property of Volcan versus other high-end brands?
Volcan is committed to the land and terroir. The carefully selected blends include both the lowlands and highlands for the Blanco, and most tequilas do not typically blend from both regions. We were insistent to utilize the Tahona method, really adopting a philosophy that is old and new world techniques to deliver the most exceptional tequila.
What’s the vision of the product line itself?
Our vision is to ensure that we respect the terroir and the people that allow for us to make this beautiful tequila. We want it to be enjoyed with this in mind, whether you share with friends to celebrate, or casually sip at home to unwind. We blend heritage and authenticity with lifestyle.
Where in Mexico is the distillery and is it open for tours?
Moët Hennessy, in partnership with Mexico’s Gallardo family, operate a small distillery in Tequila’s Jalisco region. Currently, we are not open for tours.
What’s your favorite way to drink Volcan?
Honestly it depends on the occasion, but for the most part is served chilled and neat, especially the Cristalino. The Blanco, over the Summer months, is perfect as a Paloma – fresh grapefruit, splash of soda, ice and wedge of lime. So simple, but so refreshing.
What would you personally pair it with?
Ceviche and Tartare’s have been in frequency of late, and of course a side of Guacamole and Chips. The Cristalino served chilled actually holds up perfectly to much more hearty dishes such as a great marinated skirt steak BBQ.
MOËT HENNESSY LAUNCHES SUPER PREMIUM TEQUILA: VOLCÁN DE MI TIERRA
New spirit introduction includes two expressions – Blanco and Cristalino – expertly crafted to highlight the rich volcanic terroir from the lowlands and highlands
NEW YORK, NY – Moët Hennessy, in partnership with Mexico’s Gallardo family, who has strong roots in Tequila’s Jalisco region, launches Volcan De Mi Tierra tequila. Volcan De Mi Tierra, which translates into the “land of the volcano,” pays homage to the unique terroir with two expressions – Blanco and Cristalino – that are as authentic in name as they are in taste.
The history for Volcan De Mi Tierra started over 200,000 years ago when the volcano, appropriately named Tequila, erupted and covered the area in rich volcanic soil. Fertilizing the land for prime agriculture, the distillery for Volcan De Mi Tierra sits in the lowlands, at the foot of the volcano, where 100% blue agave from both the low- and high-lands is grown and used to produce Blanco and Cristalino.
Tequila expert and industry leader, Maestra de Tequila Anna Maria Romero Mena, carefully developed the blends for the Blanco and Cristalino. After careful experimentation with yeast variations, agave selection and multiple cask maturations, the final blend for the Blanco and Cristalino was crafted. Romero Mena says, “It was my hope to create a spirit that is truly committed to expressing the heart of the agave and terroir from which it came. This is why – unlike many distilleries – we combine agave from the low- and high-lands and embrace the nuances from each region to create a unique style. The result – an authentically complex yet elegant and balanced liquid.”
Volcan De Mi Tierra Blanco delivers an austere and herbaceous flavor spectrum from the lowlands agave, blended with finesse, citrus and floral notes of the highlands. The Blanco can be enjoyed mixed into cocktails or served neat. Volcan De Mi Tierra Cristalino is an Anejo, aged for many months with different cask finishes, with the color extracted. While a clear liquid, the taste still delivers incredible depth, richness and complexity of an aged tequila, which is best appreciated neat or over ice.
“For the past two-and-a-half years, with full support of the Moët Hennessy and the Gallardo family, I’ve been working on bringing Volcan De Mi Tierra to the marketplace. While super premium tequila has been exploding for nearly a decade, there is still much more room for growth in regards to quality product. Volcan De Mi Tierra truly encompasses the authenticity and simplicity of tequila as it has been made for hundreds of years. Our story takes us back to the land focusing on its unique terroir, as well as its people and culture. We are excited to bring Mexican craftsmanship to the United States through this new product,” said Trent Fraser, President and CEO of Volcan De Mi Tierra.”
Volcan De Mi Tierra Blanco and Volcan De Mi Tierra Cristalino are available to taste at fine restaurants and bars that respect the craft of the cocktail. For more information and updates please visit us on Instagram @VolcanTequila.
A look at the incredible launch party at one of my favorite Los Angeles rooftops, Petit Ermitage.