Ah, Tequila !!!
Tequila, ever wonder why it can cost $13 a bottle or $139 a bottle? And what is it anyway? Tequila is made from the Blue Agave or tequila agave plant that starts out as a large succulent, with spiky, fleshly leaves. Tequila is produced by removing the heart of the plant when the plant reaches its twelfth year. A twelve year old Agave plant can weigh anywhere from 75 to 200 pounds. The leaves are removed and heated to remove the sap, which is then fermented and distilled.
So,why is some tequila more expensive than others? If it is 100% Blue Agave it is more expensive, than say others made from 51% that is made with sugar water, corn liquor or other additives.
“Types” of Tequilas:
- Blanco (“white”) or plata (“silver”):white spirit, un-aged and bottled or stored immediately after distillation, or aged less than two months in stainless steel or neutral oak barrels.
- Joven (“young”) or oro (“gold”):is silver tequila with caramel or food coloring added. Examples are Jose Cuervo Gold or Sauza Gold.
- Reposado (“rested”): aged a minimum of two months, but less than a year in oak barrels.
- Añejo (“aged” or “vintage”): aged a minimum of one year, but less than three years in oak barrels.
- Extra Añejo (“extra aged” or “ultra aged”): aged a minimum of three years in oak barrels. This category was established in March 2006.
Here are a few top rated Tequilas :
Milagro Silver ($30) – This entry-level tequila is made from hand-selected estate-grown 100 percent agave.
Don Juilo Resposado($38) – The agave that goes into this bottle is grown as long as 10 years before it’s cooked, fermented, and distilled. Unlike some resposados, which are aged a mere two months, Don Julio gives this bottling eight months of beauty sleep in American white-oak bourbon barrels, which can’t be reused stateside.
How to make a Perfect Margarita in 4 Steps:
Step 1: Chill your margarita glass, then dip the rim of the glass into a plate of coarse salt.
Step 2: Put 2 oz. tequila, 3/4 oz. fresh lime juice and 1 oz. Triple Sec or Cointreau in a cocktail shaker with cracked ice.
Step 3: Shake three times and strain into your glass.
Step 4: Garnish with lime wedge.