Meet Your New Favorite Sipping Spirit
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Best for Bourbon Lovers: Espolòn Añejo at Drizly
“Finished in Wild Turkey bourbon barrels, this delightful tequila has great value.”
When most people think of tequila, they probably dont think of an aged spirit with notes of vanilla and baking spices. But, añejo tequila is, by definition, aged at least a year and up to three in oak barrels, bringing out a rounder texture and sweeter flavors. Its not the tequila youll want to shoot or mix into a , but its great as a replacement for bourbon in cocktails or for sipping straight. Its special tequila, made to be aged.
From popular brands to few under-the-radar bottles, here are the best añejo tequilas.
How Healthy Is Tequila
Sadly, because agave is fermented in order to distill tequila, most of the healthful qualities are eliminated in the process. Even so, tequila experts and nutritionists do praise the spirit as being a healthier alcohol. Tequila is one of the liquors I suggest to clients who like an occasional tipple but would rather not completely undo their overall wellness and nutrition efforts, says Persak.
Tequila has about 97 calories per jigger and no carbohydrates, according to the United States Department of Agriculture, as do other spirits such as vodka, rum, and whiskey. This gives it an edge over wine, beer, and hard ciders, which contain more calories, carbohydrates, and sugar per serving. Tequila is also gluten-free, as are many distilled spirits yes, even those that are distilled from grains. And, since its a clear spirit, tequila is generally lower in congeners than darker liquors, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Its worth noting that, when it comes to cocktails, the mixers are where extra calories and sugar can sneak in, so if youre looking to keep your drink super healthy, opt for something such as sparkling water or a squeeze of fresh fruit juice, which are generally low in calories, sugar, and carbs, says Persak.
What Is The Difference Between Silver And Anejo Tequila
Home > Tequila > Whats The Difference Between Anejo Reposado And Silver Tequila? In contrast, silver is a fresh distilled spirit which does not age. Generally, reposado is aged in oak barrels for two to eleven months. The term anejo refers to tequila that has been aged in oak barrels for over a year.
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How Do You Enjoy Anejo Tequila
A*ejo Tequila tastes best when served on the rocks because you get to experience the full range of flavors. In this way, you will be able to appreciate and recognize all of the flavor components of the dark tequila. Tasty flavors of vanilla and caramel combine with the salty citrus notes of tequila to create a truly memorable finish.
Is Anejo Tequila Good For Cocktails
Tacos like the Margarita and Paloma, made with A*ejo Old Fashioned Tequila, are best known for using it. Despite this, the agave-based spirit is a work horse that can be consumed neat or mixed into drinks that range from refreshing sour t is a workhorse that can be consumed neat or utilized in drinks from refreshing sours to potent stirred drinks.
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How It Is Made
The blue weber agaves are harvested after around 7 years. The piña, or heart of the plant is extracted. The piñas are roasted for anywhere between 24-48 hours, before being juiced.
The sweet liquid that is extracted from the agaves is combined with yeast, often in giant open barrels, and is allowed to ferment for up to 96 hours. After the alcohol has been produced, it is time to distill.
To make real tequila, there has to be a double distillation process. The distillation is traditionally done in pot stills, and always at some point goes through copper. Every distillery does these steps differently, but they all go through this process in some way.
At this stage, the aging process can begin. Maturation only takes place on intended reposado and añejo tequilas, Blanco tequila is ready to drink at this stage. The barrels are often American oak, sometimes having been charred to increase flavor and deepen the color. The aging process can be up to 4 years or longer for some special añejos.
How Do You Drink Extra Anejo Tequila
You cant even drink it when your nose is in contact with the glass because its so high in alcohol. make sure the beverage is at body temperature before swallowing it. You might get a little bit of agave taste, she adds, as well as the richness of the barrel, perhaps buttery rich flavors, vanilla, sometimes caramelized pear.
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What Are The Most Popular Tequila Cocktails
: The gold standard when it comes to tequila cocktailsand one of the reasons the spirit has become so popular in the U.S. Citrusy, salty and boozy, its infinitely customizable and can be served up, on the rocks or frozen.
Paloma: This spritzy, grapefruit soda-and-tequila cocktail is far more popular in Mexico than the Margarita.
Tequila Sunrise: A staple in the 1970s, the Tequila Sunrise gets its name from its sunrise-esque layering, achieved by pouring grenadine over a mix of tequila and orange juice.
Bloody Maria: The perfect drink for those who want to actually taste the alcohol in their Bloody Marys.
Siesta: This take on the Hemingway Daiquiri swaps the rum for tequila and uses bittersweet Campari in place of the usual maraschino liqueur. A mix of grapefruit and lime juices give it a bright, tangy flavor thats perfect for sipping on a hot afternoon.
Baja Gold: This tasty cousin of the Margarita ditches the lime juice for freshly pressed pineapple juice. Reposado tequila gives the drink deep earthy notes and a caramelly sweetness.
Also rising in popularity is the Tequila Old Fashioned, which replaces whiskey with an añejo.
How To Drink Aejo Tequila
Just like bourbon, you can drink añejo tequila any way you like, but we prefer it neat.
Know what youre drinking:
- Puro tequilas are 100% agave tequilas
- Mixto tequilas are 51% agave with 49% sugar
Were going to talk about puro tequilas because they are best for sipping and savoring. No lime or salt is necessary as you dont want to mask the flavor. Ideally, you want to use a copita glass which focuses the aromas up to the nose.
We recommend the following method for drinking finer tequilas:
Thats the Mexican method for drinking tequila.
And that brings us to our next section
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How To Store Anejo Tequila
Once you have opened a bottle of Anejo it is important to understand how to store it to best preserve its robustness and flavor. A good Anejo should be bottled with a removable cork. Simply recork your bottle and store it in a safe location that maintains room temperature. There is no need to find a dark place or use space in a wine cooler.
The use of a decanter is perfectly suitable as well, assuming that the decanter does form a good seal to preserve the aromas and flavors.
Shooting Tequila Imbibing Quickly
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Amount Of Calories In Drinks Made With Tequila:
In Mexico, people like to drink Tequila straight without the use of salt and lime. Generally, tequila shot is in between 64 to 69 calories. Some famous cocktails made with Tequila include fruit juice, which increases the sugar level.
Matador: Matador with pineapple, Tequila and lime juice is generally high in sugar and contains about 500 calories per 12 oz. glass.
It is manufactured by mixing lime juice, Cointreau and Tequila. A 12 oz. glass will give 540 calories.
Tequila sunrise: Orange juice, Tequila and grenadine are mixed and 12 oz. glass of this drink will give you 400 calories.
How Many Calories In A Shot Of Tequila
If you get to know about how many calories in Tequila, then it will help you to customize low-calorie cocktails to lose weight. 1.5 fluid ounces of Tequila contains 97 calories, and usually, a tequila cocktail contains 1.5 oz. Tequila.
Tequila shots: It can be the best way to reduce weight as it contains only 99 calories in a tequila shot in the form of the salt and lime wedge flavor.
Tequila mixers: Juice and soda are also used with cocktails which are the highest calorie mixers. If you use diet soda and fresh juice, then calorie consumption can be reduced to much extent in tequila cocktail.
Low Calories In Tequila Cocktails:
Take 3 oz. of diet sprite, 1.5 oz of Tequila, ice cubes and one lime wedge 2.
Procedure: Put ice cubes into a highball glass and then add Tequila, soda in it. In last, give it finishing with lime wedges.
What Makes A Tequila A Tequila
As previously mentioned, there are several strict rules that must be followed for a tequila to be considered tequila. There are several international trade agreements that Mexico upholds to ensure that these rules are followed.
Firstly, tequila can only be produced from 100% blue weber agave plants. The agave plants are primarily grown in the surrounding area of the city of tequila, the northwestern region of Guadalajara, and the Jalisco Highlands located in the state of Jalisco.
The different regions produce different characteristics in the agave plants. Some are sweeter, some are more peppery, and some are more floral. Producers are very careful and consistent with where they source their agaves.
There are signs that you are drinking true a true and authentic tequila, or a fake. Firstly, the bottle will have a 100% agave, or 100% blue weber agave on the label. Also, if it doesnt say Product of Mexico then it is not real!
Pairing Food With Aejo & Extra Aejo Tequila
Considering these bottles are the heaviest-bodied and flavoured examples of tequila on the market, they are often best paired with foods and dishes that contain similarly strong flavours. By far the best general food pairing option for aÃ±ejo and extra aÃ±ejo tequilas is to match them with steaks and other juicy red meats that have also been well marinated or sauced in herbs or spices. For specific dish recommendations, consider a grilled wagyu steak or lamb shank that has been coated in spices, as these two meats are full flavoured and complement well with a complex aged tequila.
The History Of Aejo Tequila
The history of añejo tequila is the history of tequila. Back in 1000 B.C., the Olmecs started fermenting agave and transforming it into a milky beverage called pulque. Eventually, the Aztecs adapted this into pulque. When the Spanish invaded the Aztecs, they appropriated pulque and started distilling tequila during a brandy shortage. This tequila is one of North Americas first indigenous distilled spirits. The first mass production tequila distillery was headed by the Marquis of Altamira, Don Pedro Sánchez de Tagle, and was located in what is now modern-day Jalisco.
In 1758, King Carlos IV of Spain granted the first commercial tequila license to the Cuervo family, specifically to Don Jose Antonio de Cuervo. His family founded the Taberno de Cuervo and began using the agave tequilana species to distill tequila, because it retains water. The first Vino Mezcal de Tequila de Jose Cuervo was made in 1795, and thus, the tequila industry was born. The official Cuervo distillery was founded in 1812 and passed down through the Cuervo family.
Quickly following in the footsteps of the Cuervo family, the Sauza family made their own mark in the tequila industry. Don Cenobio Sauza realized that the blue agave was the best species of agave plant for tequila production.
Then, during the Prohibition period, tequila became the popular drink for desperate Americans needing alcohol. Bathtub gin wasnt their cup of tea-quila, so tequila became their drink of choice.
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Budget Pick 1800 Aejo
The 1800 añejo is a reasonably priced tequila, over delivering in every possible way. This añejo is aged in American oak casks for 12 months, with a portion of the alcohol aged for an additional two years. The palate is rich and round, full of caramel, citrus, and sweet spicy flavors. To seal their spot in the top añejo tequilas of all time, its a 2021 winner of the New York International Spirits Awards Competition.
About the distillery: 1800 añejo tequila is produced at La Rojeña Distillery, owned by the Beckmann family . La Rojeña is the oldest active distillery in Tequila, Jalisco, Mexico. In 1921, when Jose Cuervo died, management of the distillery was taken over by administrators Juan Beckmann Gallardo and Juan Beckmann Vidal before eventually passing to the Cuervo Heirs. After 200 years, Cuervos heirs still own and operate the distillery, winning multiple awards for all of their tequilas.
Best Organic: 123 Tequila Aejo
This new-to-market certified organic tequila comes from the lowlands of Jalisco, Mexico, and is produced from hand-harvested agave plants. Eighteen months of aging in white oak barrels add length and complexity to the spirit, which bursts with warming flavors of chocolate, baking spice and maple. 123 Tequila even uses recycled materials and natural soy ink to create its labels. This is sustainable sipping in one of its finest forms.
For crafting cocktails at home, Hornitos offers a great bottle that won’t break the bank. This 100% agave tequila ages for one year in American white oak barrels and is loaded with delicate flavors of sweet oak, smoke, vanilla and black pepper. Perfect for mixing in , Palomas, Tequila Sours and beyond.
For a drink like an Old FashionedI do prefer the spicier, wood-driven character to add depth, says Reynolds.
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What Is The Smoothest Tequila For Shots
10 Best Tequilas for Margaritas and Shots in 2021
- Best Overall: Casamigos Blanco Tequila at Drizly.
- Best Top-Shelf: Milagro Añejo Tequila at Drizly.
- Best Cheap: Sauza Silver Tequila at Drizly.
- Best Mid-Priced: Herradura Silver Tequila at Drizly.
- Best Añejo: Don Julio Añejo Tequila at Drizly.
- Best Blanco/Silver: Espolòn Blanco at Drizly.
- Best Reposado:
- Best Gold:
Where Is Tequila Made
Under Mexican law, tequila must be made in a location certified by a Consejo Regulador del Tequila in one of five Mexican states: Jalisco, Guanajuato, Michoacan, Nayarit and Tamaulipas. Most of the 150-plus distilleries that meet these requirements are located in Jalisco in the Tequila Valley, which can be divided into two main production regions: the highlands and the lowlands. Tequilas from the highlands are known for their natural sweetness while lowlands tequilas are much spicier.
The highlands are rich with red clay soil and experience more rainfall than the lowlands. The higher altitude also means cooler nights, which produces blue agave that is larger and sweeter. Tequilas from the highlands are typically more delicate with floral and mineral notes on both the nose and palate. If youre looking to get a taste of tequila from the lowlands, there are a ton of great bottlings from which to choose. Some of our favorites include Jose Cuervo, Espolon, Milagro, El Tesoro, and Cazadores.
Jaliscos lowlands boast volcanic soils, which results in blue Weber agave that has spicier and more herbaceous flavors and aromas. Brands like Casa Noble, 1800, and Herradura produce great expressions. If youre looking to get a feel for lowlands tequila, we suggest trying it in cocktails first before moving on to neat or chilled pours.
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Best Under $: Cazadores Tequila Aejo
Great for mixing or sipping
Sustainably made, zero waste
May be difficult to find in stores
Cazadores Añejo is made with 100 percent blue agave, which is fermented twice and distilled twice before spending at least a year in new, small American white oak barrels. New oak barrels have more flavor to impart, and this highland tequila boasts layers of itthink spiced apple pie, pecans, vanilla bean, a salted chocolate almond bar. It would pair nicely with dessert, but it’s also wonderful sipped neat.
Cazadores means hunters in Spanish, a reference to founder Don Jose Maria Bañueloss obsession with protecting the quality and uniqueness of his tequila. It is said he even went so far as to hide his tequila recipe in the walls of his house. Cazadores has fine-tuned its process to be both sustainable and zero-waste , meaning you can feel even better about sipping this delicious tequila.
Aged: At least one year in new, small, American white oak barrels | TastingNotes: Spiced apple pie, pecans, vanilla bean