Ancho Reyes was created in 1927 from the town of Puebla de Zaragoza, Mexico. The Reyes family created an ancho chili liquor that Daniel Schneeweiss and Moises Guindi would later bring to light in 2014 as a historic award-winning spirit. The original recipe would later evolve into the creation of Ancho Reyes Verde a more bright and vegetal profile alongside the original Ancho Reyes.
While both are created from poblano chilies, there are a few key differences that make them stand apart. The Verde chilies are harvested earlier in the maturation process in late August while still green and then later fire roasted. The chilies are then soaked and macerate in a neutral cane spirit Veracruz, Mexico, for six months in small iron vats before being blended with other ingredients and allowed to rest before bottling.
The Original chilies are late harvested while ripened red by the sun and dried for 20 days, which turns them into ancho chilies. Using the hand scissoring maceration process the chilies are smoked and then soak in a neutral cane spirit and follow the same maturing process as Verde.
The Verde is bright, herbal and spicy with a more vegetal fresh from the garden flavor which works well with light and clear spirits and is considered an asset in cocktails such as margaritas, gimlets and daiquiris.
On the nose, the original Ancho Reyes (red) hints at caramelized peppers and dried stone fruit alongside a biting, almost minty zest. Its flavor is warm, deep and spicy, but the biting freshness is still there, now discernible as hot seeded pepper, underlined with sweeter notes of tamarind candies. It bites, but is not overwhelming.