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Tequila

What is tequila? Well, it is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from the blue agave plant, primarily in the area surrounding the city of Tequila, 65 km (40 miles) northwest of Guadalajara, and in the highlands (Los Altos) of the western Mexican state of Jalisco. Tequila is most often made at a 38% alcohol content (76 US proof) but can be produced between 35-55% ABV.

The first distillation of what we now know as tequila took place in 1530, just 30 years after the Spanish conquest of Mexico. It was created by a man named Martin de la Cruz, who was inspired by a similar drink being made in Spain. Tequila quickly became popular throughout Mexico, and by the early 1800s, it was being exported to other countries.

Tequila is made from the agave plant, which is native to Mexico. There are more than 200 varieties of agave, but only one, the blue agave, is used to make tequila. The blue agave plant takes anywhere from six to twelve years to mature and can grow up to 2.5 meters (8 feet) tall. Once the plants are mature, they are harvested and the piñas (the hearts of the plants) are extracted.

The piñas are then chopped into small pieces and placed in large ovens where they are slow roasted for several hours. This process breaks down the complex carbohydrates in the piñas into simple sugars, which are then used to produce tequila.

After the piñas have been cooked, they are mashed and placed in large fermentation tanks where yeast is added. The yeast causes the sugars in the mash to ferment and produces alcohol. The fermented mash is then distilled to create the great tequila!

The agave plant had been used in the preparation of alcoholic drinks for centuries; in fact the Aztecs had made a fermented drink from it called octli. In around 1600, the Marquis of Altamira, Don Pedro Sánchez de Tagle, first mass-produced tequilas in a factory he founded in Jalisco.

The agave plant is still harvested by hand, by workers called "jimadores" They work carefully to harvest the small Agave offspring without damaging the parent plant. The exact time of the harvest is very important, because if the agave plants are gathered too early in the season, the natural sugars will have yet to develop, and if it is gathered too late, the natural sugars will have already been used up by the plant.

More traditional companies still crush the plants with an old-fashioned stone wheel. The fermented juices are distilled, usually twice, though sometimes three times.

Tequila can be either blanco (white), which is also called plata (silver) or joven (young), or it can be aged in oak barrels, which gives it a golden or amber colour. Tequila that has been aged for more than two years is called añejo (aged). Tequila that has been aged for more than three years is called extra añejo (extra aged).

Tequila can be enjoyed neat or in cocktails such as the Margarita, Paloma, and Tequila Sunrise. Tequila is also used in cooking, for example in the popular Mexican dish Cochinita pibil.

Don Julio 1942 Tequila

70cl, 38%
Don Julio

The Top Cuvée from Veteran Producer Don Julio, named in honour of founder Don Julio Gonzalez-Frausto Estrada, who first distilled Tequila when he was just 17 years old in 1942. This tasty Mexican…  More info

Don Julio 1942 Tequila
10
$215.11

Clase Azul Reposado

70cl, 40%
Clase Azul

An unbelievably good Reposado tequila, made from Organic agaves which are grown for over 9 years before slow cooking in traditional ovens. The fermentation is done using the company's secret blend of…  More info

Clase Azul Reposado
8
$215.07

Casamigos Añejo Tequila

70cl, 40%
Casamigos

From the Casamigos range (which we believe means 'house of friends') comes an Añejo tequila, which has spent 14 months ageing in American white oak casks. This maturation has resulted in a tequila…  More info

Casamigos Añejo Tequila
4
$62.48

Pancho Datos Reposado Tequila

70cl, 40%
Pancho Datos

This 100% agave reposado Tequila from Pancho Datos was rested for six months in white oak barrels previously used to mature bourbon whiskey. The agave itself is allowed to age for at least six years,…  More info

Pancho Datos Reposado Tequila
29
$50.71

Pancho Datos Plata Tequila

70cl, 40%
Pancho Datos

This 100% agave tequila was born out of a desire to revive the work of the great historian and poet of the Mexican Revolution, Ricardo Grijalva de León and a character he created in 1947, Pancho…  More info

Pancho Datos Plata Tequila
25
$44.04

Mijenta Tequila Blanco

70cl, 40%
Mijenta

Mijenta Tequila comes to us from the highlands of Jalisco, where it's made with sustainability in mind, crafted by Maestra Tequilera Ana Maria Romero. Produced with 100% blue weber agave, and bottled…  More info

Mijenta Tequila Blanco
2
$56.29

Casa Dragones Blanco

70cl, 40%
Casa Dragones

It's the Blanco expression from Casa Dragones, distilled exclusively from Blue Weber agave. Totally unaged, it's bottled up at 40% ABV in all its fresh agave glory. This would make an absolutely…  More info

Casa Dragones Blanco
4
$89.64

Fortaleza Blanco

70cl, 40%
Destileria La Fortaleza

Guillermo Sauza's family have a rich Tequila-making history, with Don Cenobio a key figure in establishing Tequila as we understand it today. When Guillermo was little, his grandfather sold the…  More info

Fortaleza Blanco
4
$57.78

Mijenta Tequila Reposado

70cl, 40%
Mijenta

A glorious 100% agave Reposado Tequila from the folks at Mijenta, who are committed to environmental sustainability. Lightly aged in a combination of American white oak, French oak, and French acacia…  More info

Mijenta Tequila Reposado
$65.51

Casamigos Blanco Tequila

70cl, 40%
Casamigos

Casamigos Blanco is a light, refreshing tequila, made with 100% agave, which ripples with notes of freshly chopped herbs (think mint leaves), vanilla and subtle agave. The Casamigos brand is the…  More info

Casamigos Blanco Tequila
3
$51.17

Patrón Silver

70cl, 40%
Patrón

Patrón Silver is the perfect tequila for those who appreciate quality and refinement. Handcrafted in small batches in Mexico, Patrón Silver is triple-distilled and made from the finest 100% Weber…  More info

Patrón Silver
9
$45.06

Fortaleza Añejo

70cl, 40%
Destileria La Fortaleza

With a rich family history in tequila, Guillermo Sauza launched Fortaleza in 2005, bringing back the traditions of previous generations at the family distillery that had sat unused for too long. This…  More info

Fortaleza Añejo
5
$99.91

G4 Tequila Blanco

75cl, 40%
G4 Tequila

The blanco expression from the G4 Tequila range, created by Felipe Camarena - the Camarena family is well known in the Tequila world for making excellent spirits and Felipe is continuing this…  More info

G4 Tequila Blanco
3
$42.96

Sauza Hornitos Reposado

70cl, 38%
Sauza

100% agave tequila from one of the most consistent producers in Mexico.  More info

Sauza Hornitos Reposado
3
$39.94

Clase Azul Plata

70cl, 40%
Clase Azul

This beautiful blanco Tequila is made from agaves that were aged for at least 9 years. These are slow cooked in traditional ovens and are distilled before a triple filtration. Clase Azul Plata is…  More info

Clase Azul Plata
1
$122.16

Cazcabel Blanco

70cl, 38%
Cazcabel

Cazcabel Blanco is a classically-styled tequila from Jalisco, Mexico, evidently named after a legendary medicine man known as Don Cazcabel. Rich in earthy roasted agave with citrus notes shining…  More info

Cazcabel Blanco
8
$26.33

VIVIR Tequila Reposado

70cl, 40%
VIVIR

VIVIR Tequila Reposado is made with 100% blue weber agave, and allowed to mature in bourbon oak casks for at least 6 months before making its way into the handsome bottles. Suitable for enjoying…  More info

VIVIR Tequila Reposado
23
$38.92

Clase Azul Gold

70cl, 40%
Clase Azul

This is quite a remarkable creation from Clase Azul Tequila. The brand took its Tequila Plata and then blended that with a reposado Tequila it had matured in French oak casks as well as an Extra…  More info

Clase Azul Gold
$459.89

Fortaleza Reposado

70cl, 40%
Destileria La Fortaleza

Fortaleza launched in 2005, but Guillermo Sauza's family have been making tequila for five generations going back to Don Cenobio who is said to have been the first person to export “mezcal de…  More info

Fortaleza Reposado
2
$66.27

Código 1530 Tequila Barrel Strength Añejo

70cl, 44%
Código 1530

A markedly smooth barrel strength añejo Tequila aged for two years in French white oak ex-Cabernet barrels. This limited release is produced in the town of Amatitán in the valley region of Jalisco,…  More info

Código 1530 Tequila Barrel Strength Añejo
$133.17

Rooster Rojo Reposado Tequila

70cl, 38%
Rooster Rojo

Produced and distilled in the heart of Tequila, Mexico, by Fabrica de Tequilas, this reposado was made with blue agave that was cooked in autoclaves using steam for 10 hours. A special yeast is then…  More info

Rooster Rojo Reposado Tequila
2
$25.54

Rey Sol

70cl, 38%
San Matias

Rey Sol is a spectacular extra añejo Tequila from San Matias, made with agave plants that have aged for 7 to 10 years before being harvested. The Tequila itself is matured for 6 years, and presented…  More info

Rey Sol
1
$204.83

Tapatio Excelencia Gran Reserva Extra Añejo

100cl, 40%
La Altena

Holy smokes! This Tapatio tequila is incredible! The Tapatio Excelencia Gran Reserva Extra Añejo is matured for around four years. A combination of casks are used, depending on the batch, including…  More info

Tapatio Excelencia Gran Reserva Extra Añejo
12
$194.63

Herradura Reposado

70cl, 40%
Herradura

Herradura Reposado is a delicious Tequila which was launched in 1974 - it was also the world's first commercial Reposado! It is aged for 11 months in oak and it took home a Double Gold from the San…  More info

Herradura Reposado
5
$46.08

Olmeca Altos Plata

70cl, 38%
Olmeca Tequila

Made of 100% agave from Los Altos, high up in Jalisco, Mexico, Olmeca Altos Plata is a blanco tequila, perfect for margaritas.  More info

Olmeca Altos Plata
7
$34.82

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