We all have a story or 2 involving Tequila, good, bad and ugly. Shots upon shots, too many margaritas during Cinco de Mayo (what actually is Cinco de Mayo about?) But Tequila has evolved quite a bit over the last 15 years. 15 years ago you never would have thought about buying a $10-$15 shot of tequila and sipping on it. I’m not a huge fan of Patron but you have to thank them for leading the charge of super premium tequilas in the US. But really, what is Tequila and what makes Tequila, Tequila?
The Early History of Tequila
Tequila happens to be the oldest distilled drink and the original commercially produced alcohol in North America. Its early precursor, named pulque, was a vitamin-filled brew prepared by the pre-Hispanic natives. It was subsequently distilled around the early 1520s by the Conquistadors from Spain. It took on various kinds and names, reminiscent of mescal brandy, agave wine, mescal tequila, and eventually tequila.
Contrary to well-liked custom, the liquor in the center of your favorite frozen margarita recipe doesn’t originate from a cactus plant. For a lot of hundreds of years, and continuing at the moment, many of the entire planet’s origins of tequila comes from within a 100 mile distance of a city within the Mexican state of Jalisco referred to as… Tequila!
How Tequila is Made
In the present day, 300 million blue agave crops are planted, tended to, and harvested by hand. When the eight-10 yr. old vegetation have reached their peak ripeness, the leaves are stripped off and only the heart or “pia” is used to make tequila. They are chopped up, roasted after which they are torn and pressed for juice.
The juice is poured into fermentation tanks, the place where yeast is added. Juice shall be fermented for 30 to forty eight hours, and then distilled 2 and even 3 times in both customary copper stills or the more fashionable stainless-steel stills. The result’s a product that captures the aroma of the agave and, simultaneously at the identical time, tastes as pure as possible. Each pia makes about eight bottles of tequila, and the alcohol content material could also be between 70 and a hundred and ten proof.
Varieties of Tequila
If a bottle of tequila does not indicate on the label that it is created from one hundred per cent blue agave (no sugars added), then, by definition, that tequlia is labeled a mixto. Tequila mixto is roughly fifty one percent blue agave. It is not a true, authentic tequila.
There are four general classes of the actual tequila.
1. Blanco (White) or Silver – one hundred% agave tequila that’s bottled straight after the distillation procedure, not aged or handled with additives. That is the traditional tequila that’s clear, transparent and has the scent and taste of the blue agave. It’s strong and usually drunk in a “caballito,” a shot glass.
2. Oro or Gold – Tequila that has aged for about two months in oak barrels and is a little bit gold in color. There’s an additional type of gold or Oro tequila that’s been mellowed and colored by flavorings corresponding to caramel.
3. Reposado or Rested – Blanco tequila that has been aged in white oak barrels referred to as “pipones” for an interval between 2 months and a year. Though you possibly can still note the taste of the blue agave, the pale Reposado is milder and smoother. It’s getting more and more of a following, so the prices of this tequila have been going up.
4. Aejo or Aged – one hundred% agave, aged tequila that has been saved in oak a minimum of one year. It’s mainly Blanco tequila that’s amber in coloration and has a distinctive taste from the oak casks. Reserva is a particular Aejo that certain distillers hold in oak casks for up to 8 years. The “extra aejo” or “ultra aged” is aged for no less than three years. Reserva is famous to be one of the best tequila available. It has a clean and complex taste. In fact, it’s most deservedly the costliest tequila.
Tequila is a refined alcohol made from 1 of the 400 types of the agave plant. This wide mixed bag, known as the “blue agave” is developed viably in the Mexican State of Jalisco, and in littler bits of Michoacan and Nayarit. Just those parts are allowed to create Tequila which is managed by the government of Mexico. The genuine city of Tequila speaks the truth 20 miles from Guadalajara. In the event that you are ever before in that area it is well truly justified regardless of a go to. There are visits, extensively the extremely same as the wine voyages through California and Wisconsin’s wine locale. They include, of project, a little examining after the visit. Each almost no keep in city, will likewise exhibit you a specimen of two or 3 different Tequilas that they have available to be purchased.
A few persons imagine that Pulque and Mescal are the two Tequila, then again however they are made from the Agave plant, It is not Tequila aside from it is produced using Blue Agave. There are currently, an incalculable mixed bag a Tequila makers in Jalisco. Several names you could have seen are, Suaza and Jose Cuervo. The Sauza friends and family has been in home business given that 1873 and Jose Cuervo at first began producing Tequila in 1795. There are of project, various other individuals, delivering exceptional Tequilas. To bunches of in all actuality, to posting. I myself savor the experience of, El Jimador, Gran Centenario, Herradura Anejo, and 1 of my top choices, Don Julio Anejo. I have additionally refreshing numerous different people and am offered to test any you may very well need to share.
Tequila is a refined soul that is made just in Mexico, and at exactly that point in the territory of Tequila. Juice from the heart of the agave plant is aged and refined twice to make tequila. The assembling of Tequila must be in agreeability with stringent regulations put forward by the Mexican powers.
To make tequila, you require to begin with ready blue agave vegetation, which that take eight to 10 years to develop. The piñas can get over 200 lbs. When they reach proper maturation, the leaves are shaved off and just the “piña” (the succulent core) is utilized as a part of the creating of tequila.
The piñas are cooked and the starches turn to sugar. Then the cooked piñas are mashed & crushed to extract the agave juice. The extracted juice ferments for several days in large wooden or stainless steel vats. Then the fermented juice, wort or mosto, is distilled typically twice. Some brands will distill a 3rd time which will remove some of the tequila flavor making a more mellow tequila.
That will yield a silver tequila. Some tequila is aged in charred oak barrels. This will cause the tequila to develop a mellower flavor and amber color.
Roughly every piña makes around 8 bottles of tequila.