Tomas Estes is one of the most influential people in the
Tequila industry outside of the distillers themselves. Tomas is
one of three Tequila Ambassadors for the Mexican Government worldwide.
Just a few of his accolades include being recognized twice by the
Mexican national tequila chamber with the title of "Ambassador
to Europe for Tequila" and received a Life Time Achievement
Award from "Theme" Magazine for his work with Tequila
in the hospitality industry. In 2008 Tomas was given the award of
"Outstanding Contribution to the Bar and Restaurant Industry"
in the United Kingdom and was voted the "6th Most Influential
Person in the U.K. Bar Trade" by the readers of "Theme"
Tomas has a true love of Tequila that shines through
all he does. He is often found as a guest speaker talking about
the taste and process of hand crafted Tequilas to educational groups
and connoisseurs. He also teaches the wine and spirits educational
trust course on tequila and is a writer on staff for "Tequila
100%" a magazine in Mexico that specializes in Tequila category
information and tasting.
Tomas prides himself as a bartender/trade person
at heart. He began as a dishwasher and kitchen helper and eventually
put himself through school to earn a degree in teaching. Tomas however,
couldn't stay away from the service industry, he has opened 17 restaurants
and bars in Holland, England, France, Germany, Italy and Australia.
He still owns his four flagship properties); he speaks 4 languages
and continues to write articles about Tequila in Europe and the
U.S.; not as an expert or an authority, but as a veteran, having
drunk it for 40 years and served more than 4 million margaritas
over a period of more than 26 years, in 6 different lands.
After 20 years of going on an annual pilgrimage
to Burgundy in France tasting red and white wine "en primeur"
(from the barrel before bottling), Tomas developed a sophisticated
wine appreciation as well as palate. With this knowledge and sophistication,
as well an appreciation for the "slow food" process, Tomas
helped create Tequila Ocho, the only brand he has been personally
involved with as a partner. The respect for the Artesenal process
is why of all the distillers he knows well, Tomas chose the Camerenas
Family to create Tequila Ocho with him. Together they created an
agave led product that proves "terroir" from a Single
Estate has an effect on agave just as it does on wine. Tequila Ocho
celebrates the different nuances from each vintage and estate -
making Tequila Ocho rare and collectable
Miguel Cedeño Cruz is one of the most well known technicians
in the Tequila Industry and for many years he has been part of the
technical committees for the Tequila National Chamber (CNIT) and
the Tequila Regulatory Council(CRT) two of the most important organizations
linked to tequila in Mexico.
He is a native of Guadalajara, the capital town
of the state of Jalisco, Mexico but his grandparents were born in
the Highlands and they were linked to Agave cultivation for many
years in the village of Arandas, Jalisco, so part of his genes have
the influence of this marvelous plant and tequila as well.
He is a Chemical Engineer and has a M.S. in Biotechnology,
specifically in Fermentation Technology. During his first 10 years
of professional life he was involved in teaching in the Merida Institute
for Technology and the Yucatan University, forming many new generations
as Biochemical Engineers, Chemists and Masters in Biotechnology.
Research and development is another of his passions, and he was
involved in projects with other species of agave, Agave fourcroydes
(Henequen) in the Yucatan peninsula located in the Maya region.
Twenty-two years ago he moved from Merida, Yucatan
to Guadalajara where developed some projects for the tequila industry
in which he worked for 21 years having important positions in tequila
distilleries. During his direction, in the latest one, he achieved
recognition as the best distillery in the world, being the first
time that a tequila distillery won this prize.
During these 21 years, Miguel has dedicated himself,
besides his corporate responsibilities, to continue his teaching
and has imparted many seminars, conferences and courses related
to tequila and in his area of knowledge, not only in Mexico but
in some other countries. As a Master Distiller, he participates
in different tastes, the latest in London, directed to the main
spirit industries in the United Kingdom.
Always restless and because of his passion for
research and development he has directed many thesis, published
technical papers and book chapters related to tequila. Additionally
he is participating in the first diploma course for Tequila Technicians
organized by the Guadalajara University and the CRT.
In 2009, now as a private consultant for the tequila
industry, advises in starting plants, process improvement and training
people and collaborates with the CNIT and the CRT in tequila promotion
around the world.