Tequila can only be officially called “tequila” if the blue agave is grown and processed in the Mexican state of Jalisco, where Dr. Murillo grew up. The problem is that there are only certain areas that allow the blue agave to flourish, and the ranch that Dr. Murillo purchased from his father was not one of those areas. So he took a soil sample from his land, compared it to a soil sample from one of the other ranches producing blue agave plants, and figured out how to balance out his soil so it could be fertile.
Dr. Murillo presented his story at an Alquimia tequila tasting arranged by the Ventura Visitors Bureau (though any opinions expressed are my own).
Photos 1-6 courtesy of Adolfo Murillo. Photos 7-8 are by the author.