Cinco de Mayo is a great day to open up a bottle of tequila, whether you’re mixing margaritas or tasting it straight.
These six experts explain what makes a tequila good — and all the different types for various occasions, including Blanco, Reposado, Anejo, and Extra Anejo.
Pure tequila must be produced from the Blue Agave plant that has matured for a minimum of six years and be 100% agave; cheap tequila is often only 50%.
Their top 10 picks are straight from regions in Mexico where tequila hails from, including Calle 23 and Arette tequila from Jalisco.
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Any margarita lover worth their salt is warming up the blender for Cinco de Mayo — the day when the entire world seems to celebrate Mexico. Fun fact: Cinco de Mayo is actually not that big of a deal in Mexico itself. Many people think it’s Mexican Independence Day, but in fact, the holiday commemorates the Mexican victory in a battle against the French in the Franco-Mexican War. Still, many countries use the day as an excuse to blend up frosty margaritas and tuck into tacos.
As a travel journalist with an expertise in Mexico, I usually spend half the year living south of the border — except, of course, for this particular year amid the pandemic. So instead of sampling tequila in its birthplace, I reached out to six of the top tequila experts in Mexico to unearth their favorites.
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But first, let’s dispel a few tequila misconceptions.
More often than not, we associate the word “tequila” with bad decisions followed by painful mornings. Well, it might surprise you know that the tequila of your past was, simply put, not tequila. And until you’ve had the real deal, you don’t know what you’re missing.
“Great tequila starts with great agave,” tequila expert Iliana Partida told Business Insider. Agave is the raw material for tequila. “First, you want to make sure that your tequila is 100% de agave, which means that all of the alcohol in the tequila is distilled from the agave plant.” Partida is a fourth generation master distiller at Tres Agaves, based in Jalisco, Mexico.
What you drank in college was definitely not 100% de agave. That tequila, called mixto, can have as little at 51% of alcohol coming from agave. The other 49% comes from other alcohols — and usually the cheap stuff — which is why you may not have fond memories of drinking it.
But it can’t be just any agave.
In order for it to be pure tequila, it must be produced from the Blue Agave plant, and a plant that has matured for a minimum of six years. “The optimum maturing time is nine years, but still the best tequilas are made with agaves that are at least six years …read more
Source:: Business Insider