Tequila is Mexican liquor distilled from the fermented juices obtained from the hearts of blue agave plants grown in the Tequila Region. The liquor gets its name from the town of Tequila located in the state of Jalisco where production started more than 200 years ago.
The blue agave (agave azul tequilana weber) has long bluish green spiny leaves with sharp points and a large heart (called piÃ±a or pineapple) from which the juices are extracted and then distilled twice. One liter of distilled tequila requires between 6 and 8 kilos of agave pulp.
Tequila is famous around the world for its unique taste and bouquet and it is also the great mixer used in Margaritas that have become one of the most popular cocktails ever.
There are many myths associated with Tequila:
Tequila comes from the distillation of Â«pulqueÂ». This is wrong as Pulque is fine but it has nothing to do with tequila.
Tequila and mezcal are made from a cactus. This is wrong as There is no known liquor obtained from the cactus.
Mezcal contains mescaline. This is not wrong as neither tequila nor mezcal contains any mescaline or alkaloids at all.
The worm is part of the tequila or mezcal process. This is wrong as The worm is placed in some mezcal bottles as a marketing gig.
TYPES OF TEQUILAS
Tequila is produced in two general categories and four different types in three of those categories. The two categories are defined by the percentage of juices coming from the blue agave:
1. Tequila 100% Agave. Must be made with 100% blue agave juices and must be bottled at the distillery in Mexico. It may be Blanco, Reposado, or AÃ±ejo.
2. Tequila. Must be made with at least 51% blue agave juices. This tequila may be exported in bulk to be bottled in other countries following the NOM standard. It may be Blanco, Gold, Reposado, or AÃ±ejo
How to drink Tequila
Tequila is a fine and complex liquor and as such it must be sipped slowly. It should be served at room temperature, although some like it ice cold.
Outside Mexico, a single shot of tequila is often served with salt and a slice of lime. This is called “tequila cruda” and is sometimes referred to as “training wheels”, or a “lick-sip-suck” or “lick-shoot-suck” (referring to the way in which the combination of ingredients is imbibed). The drinker moistens the back of their hand below the index finger (usually by licking) and pours on the salt. Then the salt is licked off the hand, tequila is drunk and the fruit slice is quickly bitten. It is common for groups of drinkers to do this simultaneously.