Tequila Ocho Opens New Distillery, Visitor’s Experience


March 7, 2023

Tequila Ocho Los Alambiques_Exterior Front copy

Tequila Ocho announced the opening of Los Alambiques, its new distillery and visitor’s experience. The announcement comes 15 years after the brand’s founding.

The new facility is perched on a hill among many of the Camarena family’s agave fields, overlooking the heart of Arandas, and boasting direct views of the town which is situated nearly 7,000 feet above sea level in the Highlands of Jalisco. The land on which the distillery stands is known as El Cerro del Gallo and belonged to Camarena’s grandfather, Don Felípe Camarena.

“As Tequila Ocho has grown, both in size and stature within the tequila category, the time is right for a new home,” master distiller Carlos Camarena said in a news release. “Over the last four years, with Tomas’ blessings and his son Jesse continuing his legacy, we have worked to build a new facility which will allow Tequila Ocho to continue to flourish for decades.”

The new distillery was carefully designed by Camarena to expand capacity while keeping the most traditional artisanal production processes unaltered. In its new home, Tequila Ocho’s overripe agaves are gently cooked – slow-roasted in stone ovens for 48 hours, then cooled in-oven for an additional 24 hours – crushed and then fermented, without the use of any commercial yeasts, in wooden oyamel fermentation vats.

The resulting agave juices are then double-pot distilled, first in a stainless pot still with copper components, and then in a smaller, fully-copper pot still. The pot stills are exact replicas of Carlos’ grandfather’s original design.

The bottling line is overseen by a team of more than 100 expert label technicians who affix labels and inspect each bottle by hand before they are packaged and loaded onto trucks for export. The choice to retain the human touch in bottling is a direct reflection of the company’s core values.

“It’s a job that could be done more quickly and efficiently using machinery,” said Camarena. “But then most of these hard-working people would struggle to find employment. At Tequila Ocho, our team being able to take money home every week is more important than machine-driven efficiency.”

As has long been a hallmark of Tequila Ocho’s facilities, the new outpost puts sustainability at a premium. All organic residues from production, such as leftover agave fibers and vinazas, are used to elaborate compost, which will in turn go back to the Camarena family’s agave fields as fertilizer. Additionally, all the packaging materials that are not used in the final product, including cardboard, defective bottles, paper, wooden crates, etc., are sent to recycling companies. A new initiative to reuse rainwater and solar panels for electricity is in development.

In addition to the distillery, Los Alambiques houses a brand-new on-site cantina, restaurant and visitor’s center with breathtaking views of the city of Arandas. Underneath the visitors center is a barrel cellar, or cava, along with subterranean tasting rooms. The cantina – La Cantina de Don Tomas – is named to honor the late Tequila Ocho co-founder Tomas Estes and his love for Mexico and Tequila.

“It is our sincere hope,” Camarena said, “that people will come and visit us to learn about real, traditional tequila making, and stay awhile to enjoy great food and cocktails, surrounded by the agave fields.”

Public tours of the new facility and property are available through online booking.

For more information, visit www.ochotequila.com.

Photos courtesy of Tequila Ocho.