Reposado vs. Añejo – Differences You Have To Know

Have you had a drink recently? Are you into tequila at all? If you are, you surely know about reposado and añejo tequila.

Keep on reading to find out why reposado and añejo are not the same things and what they do have in common. You can even find out more about how your favorite tequila is made and how to drink it.

What Is Reposado?

The term reposado refers to a type of tequila. This denomination is given to any tequila that has spent between two months and one year in a barrel. You might see reposado tequila sold as “aged.”

Reposado tequila is known for having the ability to showcase some woodsy and oaky flavors while keeping the original flavor of the agave. For the most part, this tequila is aged in steel or oak American or French whiskey barrels. 

Since they are aged longer, they can have a higher price tag, but not as high as other variations of tequila.

Since they are moderately priced, reposado tequila will always be available at bars and restaurants. You can drink reposado straight, on the rocks, or in cocktails. Since it is silver or amber, reposado can be served in a variety of drinks without changing much.

The time the tequila spends in the barrels makes the flavor a bit sweeter with a bit of smokiness. The original reposado tequila has 100% agave, but some cheaper versions might mix in other types of sweetener. In some cases, your reposado will contain cane sugar mixed in with agave.

Reposado will also be a smoother flavor than silver or young tequila. The time spent in the barrels makes this tequila a bit easier to drink than regular tequila. Unlike añejo, reposado is still relatively young alcohol.

For those that like to drink whiskey or scotch, reposado might be a good substitute. You can enjoy the notes of vanilla and oak and drink it straight. However, if you prefer it, you can also add it to your favorite margarita.

Nutrition Facts

One shot of reposado tequila (1.5 oz) has the following nutritional content (*):

  • 97 calories
  • 0 g protein
  • 0 g fat
  • 0 g carbohydrate
  • 0 g fiber
  • 0 g sugar
  • 0 mg cholesterol

Is Reposado Tequila Healthy?

Tequila is a relatively healthy spirit, as it is lower in calories and not too sweet. Still, like with any other spirit, reposado is nutritionally insignificant. Drinking any alcohol excessively will cause irreparable damage to your body.

On one hand, reposado tequila has a slightly sweeter and oakier taste. This makes for a better combination when adding it to cocktails or drinking it straight. Nonetheless, reposado remains a somewhat neutral spirit.

As with other spirits, reposado is a depressant, which can further cause symptoms of depression. If you are prone to depression, drinking any alcohol will exacerbate your feelings. It is important to limit how much reposado tequila you drink any day.

Reposado also has mind-altering effects, which can make your decision-making skills difficult. Be careful not to drink before driving or making essential choices. You can put yourself in danger and others.

There are various benefits to the agave plant, including better bone density, blood glucose control, and gastrointestinal health. Even though this is true, there are no proven benefits to drinking reposado. Once the reposado has fermented, the agave loses all its health properties.

This type of tequila is also gluten-free, as is the case with many other distilled spirits. For the most part, reposado is safe for individuals with gluten allergies or sensitivities. As always, check the labels before buying any reposado, as sometimes it will be manufactured in facilities that process gluten.

Another key point is that reposado contains few calories but can rack them up quickly when mixed in cocktails. For the most part, cocktails have sugar, and other mixers have more sugar. It is best to drink the spirit by itself to keep things healthier.

Although reposado can be a safe choice, you should always choose to drink in moderation. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that men drink a maximum of two drinks per day and women drink only one per day. Anything more than that is considered excessive.

What Is Añejo?

Tequila can only be considered añejo if it has been aged a minimum of one year but up to three years. There is also an extra añejo tequila that is aged for a minimum of three years but spends as much time as the distillery wants.

Unlike other types of tequila, añejo is meant to be sipped slowly. The flavors are far too complex to be used in cocktails. You might find añejo at your favorite bar or restaurant, but it will likely not be mixed with anything.

Añejo might contain certain additives, such as oak extract, flavor syrups, caramel, and others. However, these additives should only make up to one percent of the total volume. This practice is common to allow the flavors to become bolder.

Although añejo is supposed to be served on its own, since it resembles whiskey sometimes, it can be in certain drinks. Some of these include Old Fashioneds, Manhattan, or smoky margaritas.

The extra añejo type of tequila was introduced in the early 2000s in order to showcase a more sophisticated spirit. This tequila is darker in color, sometimes deep gold or red-brown. Just like reposado, this kind is aged in barrels, but these hold up to 600 liters.

Since it takes much longer to make, añejo and extra añejo tequila are pricier than other tequilas. The agave notes are less noticeable in this tequila, and you will sense more complex flavors, including oak, caramel, and vanilla. You should enjoy your añejo of choice slowly and over a longer time than the rest of the tequila.

Nutrition Facts

One shot of añejo tequila (1.5 oz) has the following nutritional content (*):

  • 100 calories
  • 0 g protein
  • 0 g fat
  • 0 g carbohydrate
  • 0 g fiber
  • 0 g sugar
  • 0 mg cholesterol

Is Añejo Healthy?

As you can see, an añejo tequila is also relatively low in calories. It contains virtually no ingredients aside from the alcohol. While this makes it a better choice than other spirits, it also means that it does not add anything to your diet.

Although it is not very sweet, añejo can have certain additives that increase its caloric and sugar content. Some añejos have more flavor than others, so you must always check for additives. For some individuals, the additives damage the quality of the añejo as well.

Since añejo is often sipped slowly and on its own, it can cause fewer hangovers and side effects. Keep in mind that the hangover depends on the amount of alcohol you drink. Still, since you drink añejo slowly, you are less likely to drink in excess.

Another factor to remember is that some añejos might have cane sugar mixed with the agave. This changes the flavor and quality of the drink and adds calories. Be sure to choose an añejo that is 100% agave.

These days, you will find many brands of tequila out there. Not everyone has the same guidelines and quality, so you should always check for ingredients, additives, and certifications. Drinking a quality añejo can prevent high blood glucose, headaches, and dehydration.

As with reposado tequila, the agave in añejo does not give you many health benefits. Since this tequila is fermented and aged even longer, the agave does not add much except for flavor. Nonetheless, compared to other spirits, añejo is relatively harmless.

To prevent any health problems, like dehydration, alcoholic fatty liver disease, and heart disease, limit how much añejo you drink. Drinking alcohol is detrimental to your health, but one or two drinks of añejo every so often can be safe. Remember to limit your alcohol intake and drink plenty of water.

What Are The Key Differences Between Reposado and Añejo?

The key difference between these two types of tequila is how they are aged. Reposado tequila is aged in oak or steel barrels for two months to one year. Añejo tequila is aged in oak barrels too, but for a minimum of one year, and extra añejo is aged for at least three years.

The barrels used in both tequila aging are also different. In the case of reposado, the barrel can be large and up to 20,000 liters. When it comes to añejo, the size of the barrel is a maximum of 600 liters.

You can also differentiate both tequilas because they are not the same color. Reposado tequila can be silver to slightly yellow or gold. Añejo is brown to amber and looks much darker.

When it comes to the flavor, both tequilas taste different. The reposado tequila is oakier and sweeter, perfect for mixing in cocktails. Añejo tequila is much oakier with notes of vanilla, and you should sip it slowly.

Since they are aged differently, their aroma is also different. Reposado has oak notes with some spices mixed in. Añejo has extra sweet vanilla notes from the agave and oak barrels.

The names of these two tequilas do not have the same meaning. Reposado is Spanish for “settled,” which refers to the aging time of this tequila. The word añejo is Spanish for vintage or old and reflects the longer aging process.

One final difference is the price point. Reposado is a bit pricier than other tequilas but still in the moderate range. Añejo is much more expensive than any tequila, and extra añejo has an even higher price.

Main DifferencesReposadoAñejo
Aging ProcessTwo months to one yearaging minimum for añejo and three years for extra añejo
Aroma and FlavorSpicy and sweet aroma with a much sweeter tasteVanilla aroma, and oaky flavor
UsesStraight or in cocktailsThis tequila is meant to be sipped but can part of a few cocktails
Cost per bottle$14.99 to 159.99$24.99 to 2,000+
Calories per shot 97 calories100 calories

Is Reposado or Añejo Healthier?

Both reposado and añejo are at about the same level of health. Drinking tequila is not giving you any nutrients and might cause more harm than good. However, since you are to sip añejo slowly, it can be the better choice.

As shown above, both tequilas are very similar in terms of calories. However, sometimes reposado has more alcohol per volume, depending on the manufacturer. Choose a good quality añejo that has no additives.

For best results, drink your tequila on its own and sip it slowly. Be careful with how much sugar you add to your cocktails. Going for an extra añejo tequila might be the safest choice.


Now you are ready to surprise your guests at a party with their favorite tequila. Choose an añejo tequila to sip or a good reposado for your favorite margarita. Either way, do not make the mistake of confusing these two beverages.

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