The numbers don’t lie, data recently released by the IWSR Drinks Market Analysis, show that tequila is on track to overtake vodka as America’s #1 spirit. What was once a scorned spirit—the one everyone regretted consuming the day after—is now a venerated tipple with star power (you can’t swing a stick at the Oscars without hitting a star that owns a tequila brand). Now we all love a good margarita, in fact I wrote an entire story about the best one ever, but this story is about what everything you can do with tequila except make a margarita.
Tanteo Tequila Fresa Spritz. Tanteo is the only tequila brand that is owned by a collective of agave farmers. It truly is a tequila of the people, and the jalapeno infused expression has the perfect balance of spice. Makes a mean spicy margarita, but this version below is equally delish.
1 ½ oz. Tanteo Jalapeño Tequila
1 oz. Strawberry Syrup (i.e. Monin)
3/4 oz. Fresh Lime Juice
1 Sprig of thyme
Splash of Prosecco
Oaxaca Old Fashioned from Cutwater Spirits: A tequila riff on a brown spirit fave gets a bit of sass from the smokey notes in the mezcal.
1.5 oz Cutwater Reposado Tequila
.5 oz Cutwater Mezcal
.25 oz agave syrup
1 dash angostura bitters
Directions: Combine ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake well and strain into an ice-filled rocks glass. Garnish with an orange zest.
The Mora Breeze: Astral Tequila’s spin on summer with notes of crisp citrus, clover honey and white pepper and an abundance of tropical fruit. You’ll feel good too, with Astral’s Adobe Brick Project, each bottle of tequila produced helps make a real difference – leftover agave fibers from distillation are upcycled into adobe bricks which will be used to build homes in Mexico.
1.5 oz Astral Tequila Blanco
4 oz Limeade
Handful of Fresh Berries
2 Slices of Jalapeno
2 oz Club Soda
Garnish: Mint Sprig / Glassware: Stemless Wine Glass. Preparation: Add Astral Tequila Blanco, limeade, berries, jalapeno slices and club soda into a stemless wine glass filled with ice. Gently stir and garnish with a mint sprig.
Reynosa Ranch Water: Chef David Martin, who authored The Tequila Diet: Exploring Mexican Food & Drink with the World’s Greatest Spirit, puts serrano peppers and cucumber freshness together in this mouth-watering cocktail.
1⁄4 cup Tequila
1⁄2 cup cucumber emulsion (see Cocktail Syrups & Emulsions)
1 TBSP fresh lime juice
1/8 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp agave nectar
1 tsp serrano pepper, minced
martini shaker, muddle stick
lime or cucumber wedge
Method: Place minced serrano pepper into martini shaker and using muddler press down on the pepper pieces to release the oils and heat. Then add the ice and remaining liquid ingredients and cucumber emulsion into the shaker and shake wildly and pour into rocks/lowball glass. Garnish with lime or cucumber wedge.
The Summer Sol: Casa del Sol Tequila blended with fresh berries is an easy on-the-go cocktail.
1 oz. Lemon
2 oz. Casa Del Sol Blanco
1 oz. Water
6 blueberries, muddled
1/2 oz. agave
Instructions: Muddle blueberries with agave. Add ice. Add lemon. Add water. Add tequila. Add agave. Shake, shake shake. Pour over ice and garnish with mint. Drink.
Pomegranate Paloma: St. Germain and grapefruit soda are both great complements to tequila and this cocktail brings them all together with the added savory-sweet punch of pomegranate.
1 1/2 oz Tequila Cazadores Blanco
1/2 oz St. Germain elderflower liqueur
2 oz pomegranate juice
Top with grapefruit soda
Splash of lime juice
Pinch of salt
Method: Add ice to a highball glass. Pour ingredients into highball glass. Garnish with lime juice.
Maestro Dobel Ace Paloma: Dobel Diamante, the world’s first cristalino tequila, blended with a mix of citrus and soda make this one almost a bit too easy to drink.
1.5 Oz Maestro Dobel Diamante
.25 Oz Simple Syrup
.25 Oz Fresh Lime Juice
25 Oz Fresh Grapefruit Juice
2 Oz Fever-Tree Grapefruit Soda
Build in a shaker, shake and pour over fresh ice into diamante glass. Top with Fever-Tree grapefruit soda and garnish with a rim of kosher salt and a pink grapefruit wedge placed right side up on the mouth of the glass, serve.