Tequila TeasersOctober 10, 2019
Tequila has been all the rage lately of those who want to obtain a healthier drinking lifestyle. This aromatic spirit has flavor on its own without adding any high-calorie mixers, where just a squeeze of lime will do. With this tasty flavor, you tend to sip on your drink more slowly over time versus consuming several drinks at one social setting (think vodka, soda, close it).
Tequila is also exciting in that there are several categories from which you can choose based on your tasting profile preference. More on those later, for now know that whatever style of tequila you choose to drink, be sure to look for a product that is labeled 100% Blue Agave in order to avoid any sugary fillers (that lead to that bad, awful tequila hangover).
Advanced Sommelier Jenny Benzie, with the mixology and tasting skills of Certified Tasting Officer Kirk Baker, tease you below with top choices of tequilas that will begin your journey of tequila curiosity.
Also known as blanco (Spanish word meaning “white”) or plato (meaning “silver”), this is where it all begins for the clear spirit known as tequila. This unaged category of tequila is typically bottled or stored immediately after distillation. It will offer the cleanest, most pure expression of what tequila truly has to offer. This typically makes this category the perfect choice for your next strawberry margarita, grapefruit paloma, or tequila sunrise for brunch.
Tequila Casa Dragones Blanco is a small batch, master blend of 100% Blue Agave un-aged silver tequila. It has a rich, silky body, with brilliant platinum hues. The taste is uniquely smooth, with refined character and a soft, clean finish. The secret to their success with this flavor is adding the perfect amount of extra aged tequila, rested in new American oak barrels for over five years, for a complex, yet smooth taste that is perfect for sipping.
The brand name Casa Dragones is inspired by the legendary Dragones from San Miguel de Allende, who led one of the movements that sparked Mexican Independence. Each bottle of Casa Dragones is hand-labeled, signed and numbered one bottle at a time, hallmarking the characteristics of each particular batch and their commitment to quality. Enjoy this selection on its own to begin to educate yourself on what excellent quality tequila should taste like without anything else.
Our selections wouldn’tbe complete if we didn’t offer something pink in the mix!
Tequila Código 1530 Rosa begins with the purity of a blanco, then is uniquely “rested” for one month in uncharred Napa Cabernet French White Oak barrels. The aging in this specific barrel is just long enough to allow the Cabernet to interact directly with the tequila, imparting a gorgeous subtle pink hue that makes it look like a rosé tequila. The flavor leads with the bright agave character and finishes with soft, delicate hints of floral notes from the Cabernet.
The name Código 1530 is in honor of “Los Códigos,” the centuries old codes and customs that shaped and still live on in Amatitán and the Los Bajos region of Mexico to this day. These values are at the core of the artisan distilling families who have proudly made tequila in this area for centuries.
Making a Rosa 75 Cocktail is as easy as it is to drink it! Fill a cocktail shaker full of ice. Add 1.5 ounces of Código 1530 Rosa Tequila, ½ ounce of lemon juice and a small dash of simple syrup to taste. Shake for 30 seconds. Pour into a small coupe glass and top with a splash of dry rosé wine.
The category of reposado, meaning “rested,” is aged a minimum of at least two months, but less than a year, in oak barrels of any size. This aging of the spirit in cask allows the tequila to take on subtle flavors of the wood and mellows the harshness of the alcohol. Depending on the length of time in the barrel and the type of wood used, this aging process will also impart a golden to light brown, or even a dark brown, color on the tequila.
Tequila La Gritona Reposado is 100% de agave tequila distilled by Melly Bajaras Cárdenas at her small distillery in Valle de Guadelupe the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico. After fermentation of the agave, the tequila is then rested in reused American whiskey barrels for 8 months before filtering and bottling. It is then bottled in one of the most distinctive bottles on the market, hand blown in Guadalajara neighborhood of Tlaquepaque, from recycled Mexican Coke bottles!
Known as the Tequila Boss Lady, Melly hires only women from this rural area to teach them all she knows about mastering the art as a tequila distiller and work in every step of the production. The result of La Gritona, Spanish for “The Screamer,” is a refreshing, vegetal reposado, without the sweetness, oakiness, or vanilla characteristics often found from other regions or tequilas made with fillers. Notes of overripe pineapple and a slight grapefruit like bitterness on the palate are followed by a round finish. Perfect to sip alongside a beer to unwind after a long day on the waves!
OLD AND RARE
A tequila that has been aged a minimum of one year, but less than three years in small oak barrels, is categorized as añejo. Similar to wine, this extended aging adds more complexity and flavor to the final product. Like whiskey, these are typically enjoyed slowly, served over one small cube of ice or with the tiniest splash of water.
Tequila 4 Copas is known as the original organic tequila. It is 100% agave tequila that is certified as organic by the USDA and EU, and blessed as Kosher by Rabbinical Law. Founded by Hector Galindo Miranda, his family had been producing bulk Tequila for other brand owners when he decided to make his own. He has created a green and environmentally friendly circle of production throughout the entire process of harvesting and making his tequila. The hand blown artisanal glass bottle that comes from Jalisco is blue, known as the unofficial color of tequila, which is made from Blue Weber Agave plants. The name 4 Copas means “4 cups” and is in reference to a saying that if one shared four cups with friends, they will be friends for life.
Tequila 4 Copas Añejo is aged in carefully charred American White Oak barrels for a minimum of one year, sometimes to five years. The influence of the oak aging leads to a dark amber color, like a fine cognac. The nose has aromas of dried fruit, along with vanilla, tobacco and nuts, all developed over time with aging in the barrel. There is an almost sweet texture on the palate that lingers for a long time. Best enjoyed with the indulgence of a piece of dark chocolate.
This sampling of tequila is just the beginning to the many different categories and styles that are awaiting your exploration. No passport required, just a quick trip to the wine and spirits store to tease your palate with these tempting tequilas.