Friday, June 17, 2022

What Tequila Is Made With 100 Agave

Cdigo 1530 Rosa Tequila

The Perfect Frozen Margarita Made With 100% Agave Tequila

Drizly

Smooth and delicate, Código 1530s Rosa Tequila makes for perfect after-work sipping, or used in a hand-crafted cocktail. Produced using the tequila-making traditions of the Los Bajos region and its tequilieras, the tequila is meticulously aged inFrench White Oakred wine barrels from Napa Valley. That gives the Rosa a subtle pink hue, and a sweet yet dry finish.

Country singer George Strait is an investor in the brand, and even wrote a song inspired by the tequila off his 2019 album, Honkey Tonk Time Machine.

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Tequila Is Made From Any Agave

False. Tequila is not prepared from a cactus as there is also the myth, the agave is not a cactus. The tequila is prepared exclusively from the pineapple of the blue variety tequilana weber agave whose maturation requires between six or seven years. With some other agaves of other species, other Mexican drinks are made such as mezcal, pulque, sotol, bacanora and raicilla.

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Best Overall: Tequila Ocho Plata

Courtesy of Drizly.com

Region: Jalisco | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: Pepper, Citrus, Grass, Stone fruit

The beautiful story and unique process behind this tequila really help it shine, says Chasse. The family that makes Tequila Ocho Plata has been distilling for generations. They use traditional brick ovens to slow-roast extremely ripe agave, which is chosen from specific fields each year, so that the nuances of the terroir and weather come out, especially in the blanco.

It changes depending on the field and year, says Chasse, but in general, it offers crisp, clean peppery notes, bright citrus and grassy flavors, along with the fruitiness of the extra-ripe agave. The finish also offers a nice balance between floral and earthy notes.

Good to Know: How should you drink a sipping tequila? Hurley and Chasse suggest trying it neat in a tequila glass . Add a few drops of water to open up the flavor. Medina prefers to sip his aged tequila in a snifter with one large cube of ice, which melts slowly, keeping the spirit cool but not diluting it.

El Tesoro Aejo Tequila

Patron 100% Silver Agave Tequila 700ml @ 40% abv

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If you want to discover an authentic Mexican tequila with a bold yet traditional flavor, then order a bottle of El Tesoro. El Tesoro may be owned by Beam Suntory, the Japanese company responsible for Suntory Whisky, but this tequila is still made from traditional methods and local agave. In fact, the grandson of founder Don Felipe Camarena oversees production today. The Añejo variety is aged in American oak bourbon barrels for up to three years, which results in a nice blend of warm agave and oak flavors. If you try this tequila neat, youll notice notes of maple, vanilla and caramel, balanced with pepper and floral tones.

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How It Is Used In Beer: Agave Syrup/nectar

Agave syrup made of all simple sugars , so it is fermentable. You usually will use it in brewing to substitute corn syrup or honey. Since it is so fermentable, it is often processed into alcohol leaving no agave flavor behind. All it does is dry the beer out and improve the alcohol content.

During the brewing process, you can add agave nectar many times. You can add it during the boiling process, but youll almost boil the entire agave flavor off. If adding to the boil, you can add it within the last few minutes in generous amounts. It is to ensure that the flavors imparted into the beer. But be careful of the effect on your ABV% when adding large amounts of agave.

You have to throw in the agave nectar in the Iron Brewer recipe after you have transferred the wort to the carboy. Its probably safe to assume that the syrup was sanitized as it is pasteurized and stored in a clean container. Put the bottle in a saucepan of water. Heat the saucepan to over 160 degrees for a few minutes for sanitation and pour it into the fermenter. You may also opt to add it to secondary fermentation. Remember that adding sugar into secondary will cause extra fermentation.

Other ways agave could be used would be in place of priming sugar when bottling or after kegging to back-sweeten the beer.

Clase Azul Reposado Tequila

Drizly

If Casamigos is what you serve at your party, Clase Azul is what you break out for the select few invited to stick around after the crowd leaves. This may be one of the priciest options on our list, but this top-shelf tequila is worth the premium price. Clase Azuls tequila comes in this instantly recognizable bottle, which you see on the top shelf of high-end bars and restaurants. At over $100, this is a true premium spirit, with a bottle and flavor profile worthy of its price.

Made from blue agave plants in Mexico, Clase Azul Reposado Tequila features notes of spice, cream soda, apple cider, jasmine, cinnamon and honey. The bottles, meantime, are like a work of art, inspired by traditional Mexican colors and motifs. Each bottle is hand-crafted and hand-painted, so no two are alike, making Clase Azul a great gift idea as well.

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Budget Bottles For Shots And Sips

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.

Making tequila is not a quick process. Agave plants take seven to 12 years to reach maturity, and once harvested, they need to be roasted, distilled, and left to rest for months to years depending on the style. While many high-quality tequilas come with a steep price tag, you can certainly find bottles to fit your budgetand not all are strictly for shooting. Several brands produce excellent inexpensive tequilas suitable for sipping and making cocktails, such as margaritas, sangritas, and bloody marias. We researched top brands to find premier bottles for sipping straight, mixing drinks, and, yes, taking shots.

Here are the best cheap tequilas.

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Agave Nectar Nutrition Facts

Gran Centenario Tequila Review

The following nutrition facts are provided by the USDA for 1 teaspoon of agave syrup:

Calories: 21
Sugars: 4.7g
Protein: 0g
  • Carbs An agave nectar teaspoon has around 5 grams of carbohydrate and a total of 20 calories. That is in some other way equal to table sugar, corn syrup, molasses, or rice.
  • Fats Agave nectar contains only a fraction of sugar. It transforms a lot of the fructose it produces to triglycerides. This makes agave nectar riskier especially if you have a pre-existing cardiovascular condition, metabolic syndrome, or insulin resistance. Also, added sugars are a source of extra calories. These can cause weight gain which is an independent risk factor for diabetes and heart disease.
  • Protein Agave nectar has marginal protein content .
  • Vitamins and Minerals Agave syrup contains small quantities of vitamins and minerals such as vitamins B and C, potassium, calcium, and selenium. But, the serving size is so small that certain micronutrients provide no value to the nectar.

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Spicy And Smoky Margarita

Heres what you need for this delicious twist on a classic margarita:

  • 2 oz cayenne-infused blanco tequila
  • 1 oz fresh lime juice
  • 0.5 oz agave nectar
  • Lime-cayenne salt
  • Chile-lime cantaloupe

First, shake tequila, lime juice, and agave nectar with ice. Then, strain into a cayenne-salt-rimmed glass. For the finishing touch, add a chili-lime cantaloupe spear.

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.

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What Is The Smoothest Tequila

Here are the best sipping tequilas our experts recommend to drink right now.

  • Best Highlands: El Tesoro Reposado.
  • Best for Beginners: Casamigos Blanco.
  • Best Under $30: Espolòn Reposado.
  • Best Under $50: Cazadores Añejo.
  • Best Splurge: Don Ramón Limited Edition Extra Añejo.
  • Best Gift: Casa Dragones Añejo Barrel Blend.

Whats A Good Inexpensive Tequila

Tequila Antigua Cruz Reposado 100% Agave 750 Ml

Here are the best cheap tequilas.

  • Bets Overall: El Jimador Silver Tequila.
  • Best for Margaritas: Olmeca Altos Plata Tequila.
  • Best White: Arette Blanco Tequila.
  • Best for Shots: Agavales Blanco Tequila.
  • Best Reposado: Espolòn Tequila Reposado.
  • Best for Sipping: Bribon Reposado Tequila.
  • Best Anejo: Lunazul Anejo Tequila.

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Are Cheap Tequilas More Expensive Than Other Affordable Spirits

If they’re made from 100 percent blue Weber agave, yes, they can beand that has everything to do with the specific limitations of working with agave. Unlike spirits such as whiskey or vodka, which are made from plants that yield a crop every year, tequila is made from a plant that takes a minimum of about seven years to reach maturity. This limits the ability of producers to respond quickly to changing market trends, and several well-publicized agave shortages in recent years have demonstrated the role that scarcity plays in the booming world of agave spirits.

Which Tequila Is The Smoothest

Here are the best sipping tequilas our experts recommend to drink right now.

  • Best Highlands: El Tesoro Reposado.
  • Best for Beginners: Casamigos Blanco.
  • Best Under $30: Espolòn Reposado.
  • Best Under $50: Cazadores Añejo.
  • Best Splurge: Don Ramón Limited Edition Extra Añejo.
  • Best Gift: Casa Dragones Añejo Barrel Blend.

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Best Under $: El Tequileo Reposado

Courtesy of Total Wine

Region: Jalisco | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: Agave, Baking spice, Vanilla, Pineapple

You can still taste the lovely green and cooked agave amid the baking spice notes and vanilla that come out of the barrel-aging process, says Jamie Gordon, managing partner at Albuquerque, New Mexicos Artichoke Cafe, of this iconic reposado. I get a little pineapple, too, which is one of those flavors youre always happy to find in a spirit.

Gordon also likes El Tequileños story. Founded in 1959 by Don Jorge Salles Cuervo, the brand is now under the watchful eye of third-generation master distiller, Jorge Antonio Salles. Its the exclusive tequila produced at Jaliscos La Guarreña distillery. It has a history of place, says Gordon, and, most importantly, its delicious.

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Danos Dangerous Tequila Aejo

Tequila Review: From Casamigos Tequila, 100% Agave Azul Anejo

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One of the most-awarded bottles on our list, Danos Añejo Tequila is aged 18 months in virgin French white oak barrels and produced using 100% agave at a family-owned distillery that dates back to 1840. A small sip reveals aromas of roasted agave with woody notes, before the tequila opens up with hints of caramel, coconut and oak.

Founded in Steamboat Springs, Colorado in 2018, Danos Tequila just won Best in Class Añejo at the 2020 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. Danos also won the Gold Medal in the 2019 Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America Tasting Competition, and the Double Gold and Gold in the 2018 SIP Awards.

Think of this as the cognac of tequila best for sipping neat, or with an ice cube.

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How Is Tequila Made

While grapes, wheat, or corn can be harvested a few months to a few years later before being processed and distilled into alcohol, the blue agave plants used to make tequila are different. They take about 10 years to grow before theyre ready to be harvested for tequila.

The labor-intensive harvesting is done by hand by agave farmers known as jimadores. Here are the main steps for turning agave into tequila:

  • Agave harvesting: When ready to be harvested, the spiny leaves and roots are cut off the main plant body, called the agave heart or piña, which goes to processing.
  • Process the agave: The hearts are slowly baked, which can sometimes take days. The slow cooking reduces caramelization and prevents the juices from turning bitter, thus maintaining the flavor of the agave.
  • Crush the agave: Afterwards, the cooked hearts are crushed to release their sugary juices. This can be done by a mechanical crusher and grinder, or by the traditional way using a volcanic stone wheel called a tahona. Historically, a mule pulled the tahona, but these days an electric motor does the job. In theory, this slower practice of extracting agave nectar that will be fermented and distilled creates a more robust and complex flavor.
  • Ferment the agave into tequila: The extracted juices are then fermented and twice-distilled as dictated by regulations. The distilled alcohol can then be bottled straight away or aged in wooden containers.

Elise Bauer

La Cava De Don Samuel

From the small highland town of Atotonilco in Jalisco comes this extraordinary line of tequila.

“Don Samuel was one of the biggest commercial entrepreneurs in the town,” said Bonilla. “In 2007 he created a special production of around 10,000 bottles of Reposado tequila. This reserve is so unique, and there are not that many on the market. It must be tried.”

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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.

Or Find Our Tequila In A Liquor Store Near You

1800 Silver 100% Agave Tequila

As we mentioned above, you may not be patient enough to wait for our tequila to get shipped directly to you. If thats the case, feel free to use our online store locator to find a liquor store near you that offers Casa Mexico Tequila. Visit this link and type in your ZIP code to begin your search.

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Best Blanco: Don Fulano Blanco

Courtesy of Don Fulano

Region: Jalisco | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: Lemon peel, Lemongrass, Cooked agave

“Theres a saying: ‘Whiskey is aged in wood, and tequila is aged in the ground,'” says Hurley. Thats so true because agave takes six to eight years to mature, so you can detect the influence of the terroirthe soil, sun and shade of mountainsespecially in a blanco. He calls this one from the Altos region phenomenal.

Produced by Jaliscos famed Fonseca family using deep well water, Don Fulano Blanco offers “green cooked agave notes, a little bit of pepper and minerality, and hints of lemon peel and lemongrass, Hurley says. Along with those complex layers of flavor, Hurley likes its mouthfeel. It has a nice body all the way through, so its one of the easiest drinking tequilas out there,” he adds.

Blancos showcase the terroir and the agave, but they also show any imperfections. Look for spirits with a medium to full body, a bit of attitude, minerality and brightnessand not much ethanol burn. You can tell an impure spirit if you get that. Morgan Hurley, Marketing and Beverage Director, Mex 1 Coastal Cantina

Bonus: Difference Between Tequila And Mezcal

Now that you know how tequila is made, another question may arise: What is the difference between tequila and mezcal? The liquors typically go hand in hand as spirits originating from Mexico and being made from the blue agave plant. That is about as far as the similarities between these two go. Here are some of the key differences between the two.

All tequilas are considered mezcals, but all mezcals are not considered tequilas. Similar to how bourbon and scotch are both whiskey types, tequila is technically a type of mezcal. Mezcal is defined as any agave-based liquor, according to spirits writer John McEvoy. Tequila is an agave-based liquor that is only made in Mexicos specific regions and must only be made of the bue agave plant. On the other hand, mezcal can be made from more than 30 different agave types. The most common agave varieties used for mezcal are arroqueño, tobaziche, tepeztate, tobalá, and espadín, which accounts for up to 90% of mezcal and is the most common agave.

Tequila and mezcal also generally come from different regions of Mexico, although there is some overlap. Tequila is produced in five places: Guanajuato, Michoacán, Tamaulipas, Nayarit, and Jalisco, which is where the actual town of Tequila is located. Mezcal can be produced in nine different areas of Mexico. These areas include Durango, Guanajuato, Guerrero, San Luis Potosi, Tamaulipas, Zacatecas, Michoacán, Puebla, and Oaxaca, which is where over 85% of all mezcal is made.

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