Brand owner Jeff Johnson has long had a penchant for the rich, decadent desserts of Mexico. It was this sweet tooth that spurred the inspiration for his newest offering, Vespertino Tequila Cream Liqueur (SRP $21.99). “For the first iteration on my stove top, I bought Mexican ground cinnamon, raw brown sugar and experimented,” says Johnson. Jeff bottled his first batch of Vespertino after two years of experimentation, and it’s now ready for the public. “We’re launching in ten states immediately,” he says, with plans to grow his distribution on the East Coast before branching out west.

Packaged in a matte-painted glass bottle, Vespertino’s blue-and-yellow logo represents the sun and the agave plant from which the tequila is procured. “One thing that’s unique about our prod-uct is that it is 100 percent silver tequila,” Johnson says. It’s authenticity as a sipper and versatility as a mixer might even inspire more experimentation at home. Johnson smiles, “We’ve done Vespertino cupcakes and they’re incredible.”

– Matt Jackson

Tasting Notes

A streamlined cream liqueur with a purring engine of cocoa, powered by sleek notes of nutmeg and cin-namon. The tequila base is the fuel, but at 30 proof, it’s a smooth ride. Score: 91

-Meridith May, The Tasting Panel