You may already know that tequila is produced exclusively in the Jalisco region (and very limited muncipalities of 4 other states) of Mexcio in areas close to the town of Tequila but did you know your favourite brands may have more in common. That's because there are only 138* distillieries or NOM assignments but well over 1000 registered brands.
What is a NOM?
The Norma Oficial Mexicana (NOM), is the name of each of a series of offical, compulsory standards and regulations for diverse activies in Mexico. These standards are prepared by the Dirección General de Normas (DGN) (General Directorate of Standards).
When it comes to tequila, the Consejo Regulador del Tequila (CRT) regulates production NOM's. The NOM ID indicates the distillery meets the standards of tequila production as set out by the government, but it certainly doesn’t represent the quality of the tequila. Without the NOM stamp, it is not guaranteed that the contents of the bottle is legitimate tequila.
All 100% agave tequilas must have a NOM identifier on the bottle. The important laws since 1990 were NOM-006-SCFI-1993 and the later update NOM-006-SCFI-1994 revised in late 2005 NOM-006-SCFI-2005 and the most recent revision in 2012.
The number after NOM is the distillery number, assigned by the government. NOM does not indicate the location of the distillery, merely the parent company or - in the case where a company leases space in a plant - the physical plant where the tequila was manufactured.
So what does this actually mean?
By now you might be wondering if a single brand distillery producers better tequila than the vast majority of shared brand distilleries or even if you should be avoiding them. The answer is No.
Since 97.8% of tequilas being made are produced at distilleries that are home to multiple brands, the odds are that your favourite is not the only tequila to come out of that distillery. Tequilas made at the same distillery can vary signficantly from each other in aroma, taste, look and overall quality.
Below is an interactive NOM explorer. It contains information about all the different distillieries including which brands are produced there. An interesting but useful move, nontheless, from Patron Tequila.
I hope you found this article informative and easy to read. Please let us know by comenting, liking or sharing it! But most importantly I hope your knew found knowledge will allow you to make better decisions about which tequila you buy and how you enjoy the experience of drinking it.
That’s all for now