El Espolòn

By: Michael Prentice

Espolon logo
  • Founded: 1995, Los Altos de Jalisco, by Cirilo Oropeza
  • Owner: Davide Campari-Milano (Campari Group)
  • Owner headquarters: Sesto San Giovanni, Italy
  • Cases sold in 2022: 1.3 million
  • Bottles sold: 16 million
  • Norma Oficial Mexicana (NOM): NOM-1440
  • Distillery: San Nicolas, San Ignacio Cerro Gordo, Jalisco
  • Region: Highlands

“I consider these tequilas my second sons and care for them as I would my own family”

Cirilo Oropeza, founder of El Espolòn tequila

El Espolòn is the eighth highest selling tequila brand in the world.

Espolòn tequila sales have grown strongly over recent years to 1.3m cases in 2022. This represents a growth rate of 19.8% over 2021. Espolòn has a tequila market share of about 2.8%.

Chart with sales volumes for Espolon tequila
Sales of Espolòn Tequila have been growing strongly

El Espolòn Tequila Brand History

Cirilo Oropeza founded Espolòn in 1995 with the construction of the Casa San Nicolas Distillery. Cirlio began his career in 1965 working in the Ingenio Potrero Distillery in Veracruz which produced rum from sugar cane. He later worked in gin and vodka distilleries before beginning his tequila phase with Jose Cuervo in the 1990s.

The first bottles of Espolòn shipped globally in 1998. Espolòn was purchased by Campari Group in 2009 for $27.5 million, along with the Casa San Nicolas Distillery where it is made. The distillery is located in the Jalisco Highlands. Cirilo continued to work with the Espolòn brand as Master Distiller until his death in October 2020.

Campari Group has the eighth highest tequila sales of any company worldwide. Its other major tequila brand is Cabo Wabo.

Espolòn is Spanish for “spur”. This was in reference to the spur on the back of a rooster’s leg. The brand’s mascot is a rooster named “Ramón” who appears on label artwork. The bottles feature woodcut illustrations created by Steven Noble, inspired by the artwork of 19th Century artist Jose Guadalupe Posada.

Bottle of Espolon tequila from the freezer

El Espolòn Tequila Product Range

Espolòn products include blanco, reposado, añejo, cristalino (all 100% agave).

How Much is El Espolòn Tequila? Price Guide

How Much is a Shot of El Espolòn Tequila at a Bar?

A shot of El Espolòn costs about $9 at a bar or restaurant in the US in 2024. The prices can range from $5 to $12 with the añejo being the most expensive. El Espolòn is one of the cheaper, decent quality tequilas that is widely available.

This is based on a review I made of tequila menus from 19 bars and restaurants in different states across the US.

A standard shot is 1.5 ounces, but bars can serve 1 to 2 ounce shots which can impact the price of shot of El Espolòn tequila.

How Much is a Bottle of El Espolòn Tequila?

El Espolòn tequila costs between $29 and $64 per 750ml bottle in the USA in 2024.

  • El Espolòn Blanco costs $29 per bottle on average
  • El Espolòn Reposado costs $30 per bottle on average
  • El Espolòn Añejo costs $41 per bottle on average
  • El Espolòn Cristalino Añejo costs $64 per bottle on average
  • El Espolòn Extra Añejo costs $100 per bottle on average but can sell for up to $300

Further Questions About El Espolòn

Who owns El Espolòn tequila?

El Espolòn tequila is owned by Campari Group of Italy. Campari bought El Espolòn in 2009 for $27 million.

Does El Espolòn tequila have additives?

Yes El Espolòn tequila likely has additives, particularly the aged expressions. Additives include caramel coloring, glycerine, sweetener and oak extract.

Where is El Espolòn tequila made?

El Espolòn tequila is made at NOM-1440 at the Casa San Nicolas Distillery of Campari Mexico in the town of San Ignacio Cerro Gordo, Jalisco, Mexico. The distillery is in the southern Highlands.

What El Espolòn tequila is the best?

El Espolòn extra añejo is the best in the lineup, with the highest ratings. El Espolòn reposado is the next highest reviewed.

What type of tequila is El Espolòn?

El Espolòn tequila is made from 100% agave. The tequila is made using mostly traditional methods but with low pressure autoclave. El Espolòn makes blanco, reposado, añejo and extra añejo tequilas, including a cristalino añejo. They also sometimes release special editions, like a chardonnay barrel aged reposado.

Does El Espolòn tequila go off?

An unopened bottle of El Espolòn tequila will never go off, provided it is stored away from direct sunlight and high temperatures. Once opened El Espolòn should be drunk within a couple of years.

Is El Espolòn tequila gluten free?

Yes, El Espolòn tequila is gluten free. Like all tequilas (including mixtos) El Espolòn contains no gluten.

Is El Espolòn real tequila?

Yes, El Espolòn is real tequila made from 100% agave.

Is El Espolòn tequila Kosher?

Yes, El Espolòn tequila is considered acceptable as Kosher.

What is El Espolòn tequila ABV?

All El Espolòn tequilas are 40% ABV (80 proof). Almost all tequila sold in the US is 40% ABV.

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