Patrón changed how we drink tequila in a way Daneson aims to change how we enjoy toothpicks - through pure ingredients and time honored processes.
According to Drink Spirits founder - Geoff Kleinman - before Patrón, most tequila in the US was 51% agave and 49% sugar. This inexpensive hybrid had a harsh reputation, so harsh that you had to drink it with salt and lime just to get it down.
In the early 2000s, Patrón started turning heads with its smooth finish - largely due to its ingredients - 100% pure agave. Other brands were quick to follow and according to The Huffington Post by 2014 tequila imports had increased by 98%.
To exceed this benchmark in 2014 Patrón released, in our opinion, the best tequila for sipping - Gran Patrón Piedra. Made from Weber Blue Agave and hand crafted using the centuries-old tahona process, it is difficult to ignore how light and clean, yet full of flavour this tequila is.
So with this in mind, consider how honoured we were when Patrón approached us to collaborate in creating a Gran Patrón Piedra toothpick - the first of its kind.
Piedra Manhattan, garnished with a Gran Patrón Piedra toothpick
Made from American milled - sustainably harvested - birch and hand steeped good things like bourbon and sweet fennel, our toothpicks are born of the same dedication to purity and process as Patrón’s tequila.
So before we started distilling, Daneson’s founder - Peter Smith - went on a quest to the Highlands of Jalisco, Mexico, to learn from the master distillers at Patrón tequila.
In Smith’s words:
"It’s unbelievable the lengths Patrón goes to keep its product as pure and true to form as it was when the business first started”.
And what exactly does that mean?
According to Town & Country Magazine:
“Gran Patron Piedra ("piedra" is Spanish for "stone") is produced using a very traditional process of using a stone wheel (called a "tahona") to slowly crush the agave. The resulting juice is then fermented and distilled along with crushed agave fiber. It's then aged for a minimum of three years in new American and French oak barrels.”
For these reasons, Smith says, “The ethos of the company aligns very well with our own. How Patrón makes its tequila is truly awe-inspiring and mirrored ours well in terms of putting such a high emphasis on quality—whatever the benchmark is— and trying to go beyond it.”
The challenge for us - however - was to ensure we locked the essence of Gran Patrón Piedra - into our toothpicks, capturing its smooth, subtle essence.
This, of course, is a well kept secret, but Peter offered a hint of the process:
"The toothpicks are made in a distillation process with natural ingredients. We have to go to really great lengths to make sure these flavor compounds and notes stay in each toothpick.”
The results speak for themselves, but for now, we can only share the story - as this particular blend is only available to VIPs and members of the Patrón Social Club.
Looking for what to mix with Gran Patrón Piedra tequila?
Try their signature cocktail: