As with any education, we understand that not everyone gets it completely correct the first time out. Every tequila aficionado has experienced a learning curve. If you’re new to tequila, understand that it is a complex spirit and takes time and experience to fully appreciate. If you’re a long-time aficionado, be patient with those who are new to tequila and answer their questions as best you can so that someday, they too can enjoy tequila as much as you do.
The Education of a Tequila Drinker in Canterbury, England
Sinead Hanna, owner of The Demon Gin blog, wrote a great story about her education as a tequila drinker and attending her very first tequila tasting. Sinead is from Canterbury, England, and has a dry sense of humor with a warm finish that we really enjoyed. We hope you will too.
Tequila Tasting I Will Go
An email arrives in my folder. It reads: “You have won a place at our exclusive members’ only tequila tasting event at Club Burrito.”
I stare at the screen for a long time.
I can’t imagine this is a random coincidence, given me penchant for blogging about local things and supporting local businesses.
But seriously…free booze? For ME? This is like asking The Joker to watch your massive pile of weapons and maps to Batman’s house while you nip to the toilet. Read the rest of her adventure here.
The Education of a Tequila Drinker in Toronto, Canada
Natali Martinez of Toronto, Canada, has embarked on her own tequila education and is documenting it in her Agave Girl blog.
In this blog, she tells us about her visit and some of the things she learned at Reposado Bar in Toronto.
Tequila Hotspot: Reposado Bar
Reposado Bar was one of the inspirations for me to start my blog. It’s stylish, cozy, popular and absolutely stacked with a wonderful variation of tequilas.
It’s been proclaimed as one of Toronto’s Favourite Bars, by citizens and critics alike, so you can imagine my pleasure and excitement at the chance to spend some time hanging out at the bar and talk shop with Reposado’s co-owner & tequila connoisseur, Sandy MacFadyen. Read more here.
The preceding podcast was recorded by Tequila Aficionado’s Founder, Alexander Perez, on March 21, 2006.
Sadly, many brands still persist in the Tequila Girl marketing that Alex mentioned over seven years ago. Some brands believe they’ve evolved and took it a step further with Tequila Boy marketing. I believe the true aficionado finds both of these offensive.
True aficionados don’t buy their tequila based upon how attractive an ad model is. It saddens me that so many brand marketers are stuck in the 1990s and won’t let go of this old advertising paradigm.
When all you put out there is co-ed bimbos doing shots, drinking from red Solo cups, or worse, from the bottle, you’re telling the world you don’t want your brand to be taken seriously. I love a shirtless hunk as much as the next straight woman but don’t try to dazzle me with him while you pour cherry soda and light beer into a blender to hide the taste of your mass produced tequila.
Show me a brand owner, male or female, who is smart, savvy, self assured and passionate about their tequila and I’ll stop what I’m doing to listen.
Alex said “Tequila companies need to rethink their marketing tactics” and they still do. The big boys are still marketing their swill with expensive distractions, but the little guys…we love the little guys here at Tequila Aficionado. The little guys are slowly changing the tequila marketing landscape.
People like Alex Viecco at Montalvo who is also involved in programs to create biofuels from tequila production waste products; people like Sergio Olmos of Nuestro Orgullo who take up the banner for a family business and knock themselves out trying to create the best product possible, not for the money, but for family pride and love of agave spirits; people like Laurence Spiewak and Lance Sokol of Suerte who put thought and meaning into a logo rather than attempting to dazzle us with tits and ass.
Yes, there are still small brands that believe they can grow by emulating the big brands with sponsored DJs, rock bands, edgy artists, and girls with great plastic surgeons but they rarely make it past that crucial five-year threshold. Superficiality attracts superficiality. When your marketing involves pretty girls in club attire giving shots to partygoers who will quickly forget what they drank, then you must realize that your tequila will last only about as long as their buzz does.
I think we’re on the cusp of something, though. It makes me very happy to see tequila brands that are finally letting the tequila do the talking.
As brands take themselves and their products more seriously, so too does the consumer. People like Mary Clemente of JuradoTequila are partnering with great chefs like Grant MacPherson. Pairing dinners are becoming popular ways to market good tequilas and I hope they’ll soon take the place of trays of shot glasses.
People are beginning to appreciate what great tequila and tequila culture can bring to their lifestyle through books by authors like Lucinda Hutson. Lucinda was well ahead of her time when she first began this journey, but perhaps tequila drinkers have grown up enough to become aficionados and truly appreciate the treasures she pens.
We welcome these changes at Tequila Aficionado. Alex’s vision was that Tequila Aficionado become a resource for all things agave including mezcal, sotol and other agave spirits. He wanted to interview people in the industry, people with a passion for fine tequilas, people breaking the old paradigms. He wanted to provide honest discussions about the merits of particular spirits over tastings, not just a simple “thumbs up” or “thumbs down.” He envisioned an online resource that would bring depth to tequila culture. He hoped to create in a magazine what a master distiller creates in a small batch, something that pleases the senses, enhances, informs, and provides the perfect finish that brings you back time and time again.
Something was missing in the mix all these years, but we believe we’ve finally found the right combination to bring that dream to fruition.
We have new Sipping off the Cuff episodes airing every week so you can taste along with us; bloopers and outtakes so you can laugh with us; Founder’s Features that are interviews and articles of significance to tequila history; Portraits in Tequila taking you beyond the label to see the story of the people behind the tequila; reviews of books on all aspects of tequila from dirt to drink and beyond; reviews on tequila related products like glassware and the foods, treats and cigars that can be paired with tequilas; articles on agave related industries; features on distilleries; and reviews of hotels and restaurants in Mexico’s tequila region.
We will always have a focus on the finished tequila product, but we’re deeper than that. We’re no longer focusing simply on the finished tequila; we’re expanding to encompass all of tequila culture because, after all, it isn’t about just a quick shot –
It’s about the whole experience.
We look forward to sharing that experience with you.