History of Tequila
Tequila, a popular Mexican beverage, has been around for centuries, there have been plenty of opportunities for tall tales to emerge.
Tequila is a distilled drink that is largely produced in the region around Tequila, Mexico, which is located 65 kilometres to the northwest of Guadalajara, as well as in the Jaliscan Highlands of the state of Jalisco in central-western Mexico.
Tequila is a distilled liquor that can only be prepared in specific areas of Mexico from the agave plant. Tequila comes in a variety of types, and distillers are required to abide by certain rules. The United States and Mexico are the two countries where tequila is most frequently consumed.
The first tequila factory in the region of modern-day Jalisco was built by Don Pedro Sánchez de Tagle, the Marquis of Altamira, around 80 years later, or around 1600. Nueva Galicia’s colonial governor started taxing his goods in 1608. The Cuervo family received the first authorization from Spain’s King Carlos IV to produce tequila for sale.
Tequila becomes Mexican intellectual property in 1974.
How is tequila drink made?
The drink is traditionally made from blanco tequila, which is made from 100% agave, and reposado tequila, which is made from 51% to 70% agave. Aged tequilas are made from 100% blue agave.
Undoubtedly, one of Mexico’s most precious national resources is tequila. This alcohol, one of the first locally distilled spirits, has been mass-produced since the 1600s. It is created from the Weber azul agave plant’s heart.
Additionally, just like bourbon, which is more formally referred to as America’s Native Spirit, tequila distillers are subject to a rigid system of regulations. Among them is making sure that each bottle is produced in the appropriate place using the right ingredients and that the reposado and aejo varieties are matured for the appropriate period of time. But as the saying goes, neither Rome nor Tequila, Jalisco, were constructed in a day, much alone a thousand years.
Tequila production begins in the fields, where agave farmers, known as jimadores, grow and shape the plants until they are prepared for harvest. The plant’s leaves are removed when it is between 7 and 14 years old, leaving only the heart. A pina is the name given to the plant at this phase.
The pinas are put in an oven and steam-cooked for up to 56 hours, which softens the centres. The pinas are crushed once they have cooled, and the juice that results is fermented in wooden or steel vats, turning any sugars present into alcohol. The alcohol is transported to a still and is ready for distillation once its ABV has reached between four and nine percent.
Types of Tequila
Tequila Blanco | White | Silver
Tequila that is clear and unaged and is typically bottled immediately after distillation. Although it is technically called silver or plata when it drops from the alambique’s cooling coils, clear white tequila is most frequently referred to as white or blanco. The majority of platas go straight to the bottling facility, although other manufacturers let the tequila complete and settle in the tanks for a few weeks before bottling.
Tequila Joven | Gold
Blanco Tequila that has been flavoured and coloured with ingredients like caramel colouring, oak tree extracts, glycerin, or sugar syrup before being bottled rather than rested or aged. These tequilas are frequently referred to as suave, joven, gold, or abocado, suggesting smoothness and youth. They can be manufactured from 100% agave, although they are typically created with a combination of tequila that is 51%. Tequila that has been aged or extra-aged after being blended with silver tequila is known as “gold” or “joven” tequila.
Tequila Reposado – Rested or Aged
Tequila must be aged on wood for a minimum of two months and a maximum of twelve months before it can be considered reposado, or rested. The Mexican government has a need for this. Each distillery has a preferred kind of barrel that is utilised for ageing. White wood and French oak are two of the most popular types. The kind of barrel utilised, the resins released, and the tannins produced have a significant impact on the final product and create the tiny variations that set one tequila apart from another.
Tequila Añejo – Extra Aged or Vintage
The aejo tequilas are aged to the next level. Aejo, which means “vintage,” can only be seen on bottles of tequila that have been matured for at least a year in oak barrels with a maximum capacity of 600 litres. The Mexican government has a need for this. A year of ageing in a cool bodega results in a smoother, more refined flavour. This tequila is typically aged in cognac barrels, french oak casks, or American whiskey barrels. Aejos commonly range in age from one to three years. In comparison to reposado tequilas, they are smoother, darker, and have more nuanced flavours. For each type of tequila, the commercial alcohol by volume must be adjusted by adding distilled water.
Tequila Extra Añejo – Ultra-Aged
According to the report from the National Committee on Standardization’s meeting on October 28, 2005, this is the most recent tequila categorization. Tequila that has been ultra-aged or extra aejo has been aged for at least three years in direct contact with oak wood (holm or holm oak) or Encino oak vessels with a maximum capacity of 600 litres, without indicating the ageing duration on the label. It needs water dilution to be adjusted for its commercial alcohol concentration.
Tinegroni. Strawberry Cachaça Shake, Margareta, Tequila Sunrise, The Soul Train, Spicy Jalapeño Margarita, Strawberry Margarita, Smoked Lemon-Lime-Ade, Cilantro, Chile, and Pineapple Sangrita, Paloma Cocktail, Pomegranate Margarita, Tequila Sour