El Tequileo Reposado Rare
Heralded as the worlds first and only reposado rare, this quality mixto tequila has been aged in 25,000-litre barrels for six years. To put this into context, reposados are only allowed to be aged for between two and 12 months. Sweet aromas of vanilla, Werthers Originals, bay leaves and Granny Smith apples lead onto a sweet and spicy palate of butterscotch, Szechuan pepper, green capsicum, pencil shavings and vanilla. Alc 40%
Casa Noble Anejo Tequila
When anejo tequila is done right, its at once rich and flavorful, smooth yet complex. Thats what you get from Casa Nobles anejo blend, aged in new French oak for two full years with notes of dried fruit, toasted oak, creamy butterscotch, chocolate and spice. An undertone of sweet cooked agave recalls this tequilas fresh Blanco roots.
Like all of Casa Nobles offerings, this one is certified organic, and took home the Best Añejo Tequila prize at the 2017 World Tequila Awards. Best sipped slow for a warm, inviting mouthfeel.
Best Highlands: Tequila Chamucos Reposado
Courtesy of Total Wine
Region: Jalisco | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: White flowers, Stone fruit, Sea salt
Though other expressions have since been added, Tequila Chamucos was founded in 1994 as a reposado-only, so you can be sure that its producers are dedicated to the style.
Made with organic, high-mountain agave cooked in a brick oven and distilled in a stainless steel alembic still, it is triple-filtered and then aged in both American and French oak barrels. All of that renders one smooth sip. Floral on the nose, it has the bittersweet fruitiness and briny undertones to keep you coming back for more.
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The 10 Best Sipping Tequilas To Try In 2021
The growth and depth of quality tequila options make it a fascinating spirit to sip in 2021. A range of quality brands and strong Mexican regulation in production and distillation has helped fuel the spirits popularity, while the tequila connoisseur is a growing designation for those who like to sample quality liquor.
There are three major types of tequila Blanco, Reposado, and Anejo, although youll find Joven , Cristalino , and extra Anejo tequila online as well.
Blanco tequila is unaged tequila that tastes strongly of the agave plant, while Reposado and Anejo tequila are recommended for those looking for more intense flavor, depth, and complexity.
Youll find examples of these major tequila types in the list of best sipping tequila to try, along with some other interesting variations and the wild and earthier mezcal. You wont be finding any mixto tequila that fills slushy machines and cheap sections of your liquor store on this list.
Best For Palomas: Siembra Valles High Proof
Courtesy of TequilaConnection
Region: Jalisco, Mexico | ABV: 46% | Tasting Notes: Licorice, Black pepper, Freshly-cut grass
Siembra Valles boasts a formidable line of classically-produced tequilas, but their high-proof offering is particularly excellent in cocktailsespecially citrus-forward drinks like the paloma. This boldly-flavored tequila is produced very traditionally, with the agave cooked in brick ovens, the crushing being done via tahona, and the fermentation taking place with the bagasse , which adds richness and complexity. Finally, double-distillation in copper stills yields a delicious spirit that’s bottled at a robust 46 percent ABV. Use this in your next paloma, and you’ll be able to look forward to assertive notes of black pepper, citrus, licorice, and freshly-cut grass intermingling perfectly with the grapefruit and lime in your glass.
Region: Jalisco, Mexico | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: Pine, Lavender, Vanilla
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Sauza Tres Generaciones Plata Silver Tequila: Best Blanco Tequila
Price: £54 |
This unaged, clear tequila is triple distilled for an exceptionally smooth sipping experience, with slight hints of citrus, floral notes and white pepper. Theres no throat burning with this premium tequila from Sauza, named for the three generations of their family who have been making their tequila since 1873.
In fact, theyre one of the most awarded families of tequilas, with six gongs at the International Wine & Spirits Competition, one of the most prestigious in the industry. Its clean, fresh tasting and well balanced.
Key specs Alcohol content: 38% Bottle size: 70cl Type: Blanco
Which Is The Smoothest Patron
Patron offers several different types of tequila, and each has its own unique aromas and flavor profiles. While theyre all advertised to be smooth, it seems that Patrons Anejo is the smoothest of them all.
Anejo has a 40% alcohol concentration, the same as the rest of Patrons products, but what sets it apart is the flavor profile that comes from its aging process. Anejo is aged for over 12 months in a combination of woods French oak, Hungarian oak, and used American whiskey barrels.
This tequila aims to impress with its aromatic notes of oak wood, vanilla, and raisins. The taste will include notes of vanilla and honey that are sure to please your palate. Patrons Anego is definitely their smoothest product and the perfect tequila for sipping.
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Are All Tequilas Made Of 100 Percent Blue Weber Agave
Nearly all premium tequilas are made entirely from blue Weber agave , but there’s another category of tequila called “mixto” in which blue Weber agave need only compose 51 percent of the spirit. Producers utilize various types of sugar to make up the remaining percentage, including high fructose corn syrup and molassesalthough sometimes a lightly processed Mexican cane sugar known as piloncillo is what’s used. If your bottle doesn’t indicate on the label that it’s made from 100 percent agaveand if the price is on the lower end of the spectrumthere’s a good chance that you’re dealing with a mixto. While less expensive, these tequilas don’t reflect a historically anthentic approach to the composition of the spirit.
What Kind Of Glass Do You Sip Tequila With
If you want to enjoy your tequila by sipping, the best glass you can use is something on the larger side, especially tulip-shaped ones. The aromatic compounds of the drink can gather in the expansive middle, and the narrow opening will concentrate the aroma of the tequila.
Make sure the glass you use is sturdy enough to avoid any incidents o breaking while enjoying the drink.
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Best Under $: Teremana Blanco
Courtesy of Total Wine
Region: Jalisco | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: Vanilla, Pepper, Citrus, Earth
Leave it to The Rock to have his name behind a classy blanco, which is produced using high-mountain agave roasted in brick ovens and distilled in copper pot stills. Lynette Marrero, bar director at New Yorks Llama Inn, is a fan. Its made in the most authentic way and without any additives, she says, so its great for connoisseurs looking to sip on a serious tequila.” But, she also serves it to people wanting to learn more about the category.
She likes its clean character and wonderful flavor: The agave shines through, complemented by fragrant citrusy and earthy notes, vanilla and a hint of aromatic peppery spice.
Casa Herradura Seleccion Suprema
Perfect for true Tequila connoisseurs, Casa Herradura Selección Suprema Extra Añejo Tequila is aged for four years in small white oak barrels and then an additional 12 months in large French Limousin oak casks. This special edition bottling brings together the best of Herraduras Espadín, Tequilana, and Weber Blue agaves. The extra añejo tequila possesses the earthiness of a Reposado but the darker earthy oak tones of an Añejo.
Herradura Selección Suprema is truly a tequila masterpiece that needs to be sipped and savored, to be enjoyed with good company, at a special time, in a special place. Its perfect for wonderful times remembered.
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Q: What Is Tequila Exactly
The spirit can only be produced within the Mexican state of Jalisco and designated municipalities in Michoacan, Nayarit, Guanajuato, and Tamaulipas. Tequila must be made using only Blue Weber agave, says Ellenwood, a plant that takes between 7 to 10 years to mature. Once mature, she says, the leaves are stripped and the heartsknown as piñasare steamed, roasted, or baked before being pressed, mashed, or shredded to yield juice, which is then fermented. Agave liquid undergoes at least two distillations before becoming tequila. The different styles of tequila, says Estevez, are primarily defined by aging and time spent in oak, with the exception being Cristilano, a classification of tequila whereby tequila is filtered through charcoal to remove color and impurities.
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MORE TO READ
Best Splurge: Casa Dragones Joven
At first glance, this crystal-clear tequila resembles another Blanco, albeit in a gorgeous handblown glass bottle. Dubbed the first ultra-premium silver tequila, the spirit inside is fittingly luxurious, blending the pleasantly fruity and floral qualities of silver tequila with a subtle hint of extra añejo for the complex spiced undertones of a more aged spirit. While most tequila brands use hyper traditional production methods, Casa Dragones does just the opposite, employing a multi-distillation process. And the distillery is revolutionary in more ways than one: Its helmed by CEO Bertha González Nieves, the first woman to be granted the title of Maestra Tequilera.
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Tres Generaciones Cenobio’s Batch Plata
Tres Generaciones was established in 1973, though it is less known in the U.S. than its sister brands Sauza and Hornitos tequila, according to a press release. Tres Genraciones is owned by Beam Suntory Inc., a global spirits company named after its flagship bourbon brand Jim Beam and Japanese whiskey brand Suntory. As reported in their press release, the company also makes plata, añejo, and reposado styles in addition to limited-edition series such as the Cenobio’s Batch Plata. The unaged Batch Plata tequila takes its name and pays homage to the founder of the Sauza brand, Don Cenobio. The brand says its agave is hand-selected by a master distiller after six to eight years, and the agave is freshly pressed before cooking to eliminate bitterness while preserving the plant’s flavor. The Plata is triple distilled with citrus and floral notes. The taste offers a bit of spice with a pepper finish.
Drink Hacker calls the Batch Plata “extremely smooth” with a light and balanced sweetness. If you can’t find the limited-edition variety, Spirit Animal recommends the Tres Generaciones Añejo for its nuttiness and “vibrancy,” even if the start doesn’t present as well as some other styles by the brand. Añejo Cristalino is recommended for anyone who wants to try the new trend in tequila.
Why Trust Liquorcom
This roundup was edited by Jesse Porter, who got into tequila by way of big, oaky añejos…and then discovered the visceral joy of bright, clean blancos…and then realized that well-balanced reposados represented the best of both worlds…and finally came to accept that he just really loved them all.
Betsy Andrews has been writing about wine and spirits for two decades. While reporting for Food & Wine and Travel & Leisure, she spent quality time in Jaliscos agave fields watching piñas being harvested, and in distilleries watching them be rendered into the elixir that is tequila. Drinking at the side of master distillers, crawling the bars of Guadalajara and Tequila, she acquired a taste for, and a keen interest in, Mexicos premiere spiritespecially the añejos and extra-añejos, which are always how she likes to end a meal.
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How Is Tequila Made
Tequila is made from the blue agave plant. Its spiky leaves are removed by jimadors to expose the heart of the plant, also known as the piña. The harvested piñas are then crushed and baked in a steam producing brick oven to soften them for shredding.
Once shredded, the pulp is compressed to release the sugary sap of the piñas. This sweet agave juice is diluted with water and yeast is added to begin the fermentation process that lasts approx 4 days).
The fermented agave juice is then distilled by either port or columns stills to extract the alcohol. Finally, depending on the tequila type , it is placed in oak barrels to age.
A Sweet Smooth Tasty Tequila That Is Great For Sipping
Its not all about the agave plant, but its mostly about it. Did you notice that all of our selections are from Jalisco, Mexico? This isnt surprising, considering that this area of Mexico is the biggest producer of tequilas by far. Most of our choices use the Agave tequilana weber or blue agave plant, resulting in a sweet, caramelized spirit. Isnt that what tequila is all about? The interesting aspects are in the distillers choices of crushing, extracting, distilling, and aging. These can all take a variety of shapes and styles. What techniques do you enjoy the most? Hit us up in the comments!
This spring, we challenge you to take your tequila skills to the next level. Whether you are on Spring Break or getting ready for Cinco de Mayo, consider ratcheting your tequila tasting up a notch. Youll be glad you did!
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Take A Sip Of This Iconic Mexican Spirit
Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the bestproducts youcan learn more about ourreview process here.We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.
Liquor / Chloe Jeong
Every spirit has its “moment”sometimes more than onceand just like whiskey in the pre-prohibition era, rum in the midcentury tiki craze, and vodka in the swingin’ sixties and seventies, tequila is currently the darling of the spirits world. Nutrition consultants saddle it with various health claims , and it seems like every day that yet another celebrity is launching a new tequila brand. However, to longtime aficionados like Grover and Scarlet Sanschagrin, the Jalisco-based founders of the website Tequila Matchmaker, there’s something to be said for the old, artisan production methods and for the flavors they yield: herbs, spices, and the briny, bittersweet signature of agave.
But the sheer volume of tequila brands currently competing for shelf space means that there’s truly a bottle out there for every consumer. The Consejo Regulador del Tequila, the spirits regulatory body, lists 1,754 tequilas currently in productionand these include bottles labeled blanco , reposado , añejo , and several other increasingly esoteric categories. Whether you like your tequila neat or mixed with cocktails, here are the best tequilas available today.
The Best Tequilas For 2021 Are:
- Best overall G4 Blanco: £40.69, Coolchile.co.uk
- Best for whisky lovers Storywood speyside 14 añejo: £47.99, Storywoodtequila.com
- Best bargain El Jimador blanco: £26.35, Masterofmalt.com
- Best sipping blanco Mijenta Blanco: £49.95, Thewhiskyexchange.com
- Best for richer cocktails Cazcabel Reposado: £26.44, Masterofmalt.com
- Best for T& Ts El Rayo plata: £33.23, Masterofmalt.com
- Best for tequila sceptics 1800 Cristalino tequila: £46.85, Masterofmalt.com
- Best classic reposado Herradura reposado: £43.63, Masterofmalt.com
- Best traditional blanco Tapatio blanco: £25.12,
- Best for sweet tooths Padre Azul añejo: £107.95, Masterofmalt.com
- Best for summery drinking Código rosa: £49.95, Masterofmalt.com
- Best low-key celeb tequila AquaRiva reposado: £28.95, Thewhiskyexchange.com
- Best for Instagramming Vivir blanco: £34.95, Masterofmalt.com
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Best Reposado: Siete Leguas Reposado
Courtesy of Drizly.com
Region: Jalisco | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: Baking spices, Vanilla, Slate, Shale
Like many bartenders, Chasse considers this reposado from Siete Leguas her favorite tequila in general, regardless of the expression. The distillery where it’s made uses a mix of grinding methods: efficient roller mill and traditional tahona, a millstone carved from volcanic rock. The result: “A nice balance between sustainability and the wonderful qualities of earthiness from the more fibrous milling of the tahona, she says.
With its mix of minerality, wood-driven vanilla notes and baking-spice panache, this versatile reposado is perfect to sip on anytime along with many different types of foods, says Chasse. “It just makes my heart happy.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats
Céline Bossart has spent the past seven years reporting on the spirits business, and much of that has involved agave spirits and the categorys experts in one way or another. If shes not sipping on a Tommys margarita, you can catch her tasting an aged tequila or mezcal either neat or on the rocks.
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Most Versatile: Corralejo Reposado
Region: Guanajuato, Mexico | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: Honey, Peppercorn, Oak
Jenny Harris, bar manager of San Diego’s Point Loma Fish Shop, says you cant lose with this reposado produced at Tequilera Corralejo. Located east of Jalisco in the neighboring state of Guanajuato, this distillery is rated among tequilas top 100 by the Sanschagrins Tequila Matchmaker user base. This reposado is aged in American oak barrels, giving off an oaky profile that Harris particularly likesalong with flavors of peppercorn, honey, and, of course, agave. Its a tequila that starts with a woody, nutty aroma, rolls sweetly over the palate, and finishes with a slightly bitter spiciness.
Neat, on the rocks, or in a cocktail, is always going to be delicious and smooth. Jenny Harris, bar manager of San Diego’s Point Loma Fish Shop