STEP ONE: FORGET EVERYTHING YOU THINK YOU KNOW
It’s a fun tradition and I’m not here to stop the party, but if the only time you’re drinking tequila is gunning shots and biting the lime, you’re doing it wrong. The biggest problem is ordering tequila at a bar or even grabbing a bottle at the store based on what’s most familiar to you. Popularity doesn’t always equal quality, so the first thing we recommend is to always choose a tequila that is made from 100% agave! If the bottle doesn’t clearly show off it’s 100% status, just know that it is blended artificial flavors and colorings (ew).
HOW DO YOU PICK A TEQUILA?
If you get anything out of the next 2 minutes, the first rule is to look for tequila that is produced with 100% agave and choose an aged bottle whenever possible.
If you enjoy a bit of zest and spicy flavors, go for Blanco or Silver tequilas, such as Avion. The are unaged and contain punchy agave flavors. Avion however, gives you gentle hints of grapefruit, pineapple and black pepper.
The longer the tequila is aged, the more wood influence you’ll taste. To achieve that woody flavor, we suggest a Reposado (aged 2-12 months in oak barrels), such as Herradura Reposado, which has honey, grass, key citrus notes. For a little caramel spice kick and cream soda, Clase Azul Reposado is the way to go.
To take the woodiness flavor up an extra notch and to taste the full aroma of blue agave, we like Corzo Añejo. I personally enjoy Casamingos Añejo because of its subtle hints of spice and barrel oak, and soft caramel and vanilla notes (not to mention this baby’s aged for 14 months). If you’re feeling #extra (that deserved a hashtag), Don Julio 1942 is to die. Rich, caramel and chocolate taste with warm oak, vanilla and roasted agave… you can’t go wrong with that.
ENOUGH CHITCHAT. LET’S TRY THE DAMN THING.
We suggest sipping on Anejo tequilas neat, as they are generally smoother on the tongue. You can also add a cube of ice to reduce the strong alcohol taste, but still be able to appreciate the aromas behind it. Also, skip the tonic – all it does is dilute the aged tequila’s flavor, and that’s something you surely don’t want to miss. Sit back. Turn on your favorite jam (my favorite recent find is Daniela Andrade). Take a sip, and swish the tequila in your mouth for about 5 seconds to get the full range of flavor.
If you’re in the mood for Reposado… put a couple twists of orange in the glass and add the tequila. This brings out flavors in the oil from the skin of the fruit, which is best paired with an aged tequila that has sweet and woody notes.
If that doesn’t convince you to give it shot, they are just as delicious in cocktail form. Try these amazing mezcal cocktails