This advertising content was produced in collaboration with our partner, Avión.
Rows of spiked, silvery blue agave plants stretch across the fields. In the cool dawn light, a team of jimadores pry the plants from the ground using a coa, the traditional tool of the trade. This is the Lopez family’s Jesus Maria ranch in the Los Altos region of Mexico—7,000 feet above sea level—and it’s where the story of Avión begins.
The award-winning brand was a longtime dream of founder Ken Austin. He wanted to make a meticulously crafted, single-origin tequila that embodied the natural, rich, and roasted flavors of the agave. It was no small task. He traveled from distillery to distillery in search of a partner until he met Alejandro Lopez, now Avión’s master distiller, whose family are tequila producers and multi-generational growers of agave. Together they began the process of creating Avión, which is now a favorite with the growing number of tequila aficionados around the globe.
From the beginning, the focus has been on craft. Just like fine wine, tequila is defined by its terroir, and Avión’s rare blue agave plants are grown at the highest elevation in the tequila-producing Jalisco region. The combination of hot days, cool nights, and the mineral-rich soil gives the spirit its unique character.
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The jimadores handpick only the finest agave, high in natural sugar content and at its peak maturity (after seven to ten years). They slow-roast it in small brick ovens for three days. The low temperatures perfectly caramelize the agave, bringing out natural sweetness and rich flavors.
When it comes to distillation, Avión still uses small pot stills, handmade in Jesus Maria. The spirit then undergoes Avión’s proprietary ultra-slow filtration, which takes up to 10 times longer than usual—an inefficiency essential to impart the quality they demand. Being a single-source distillery, they can also ensure nothing artificial is added, avoiding the molasses, glycerin, food coloring, or additives sometimes used in other tequilas.
All this attention to detail pays off; Avión has scooped some of the highest accolades in the spirits industry. Avión Silver was a Double Gold Award winner at the SIP Awards. Their reposado—which rests in medium-toast white-oak whiskey barrels for six months, three times longer than most reposados—was a silver medalist at the San Francisco Spirits Competition. The two-year aged Avión Añejo was an International Spirits Challenge winner, and the Avión Reserva 44 took Best in Class at the SIP Awards. This extra añejo spends its final months in a petite oak barrel to attain those complex elevated flavors—in short, it’s the meticulously crafted sipper Austin was aiming for.