What tequila should I buy in Mexico?
January 25, 2008 12:50 PM   Subscribe

What tequila should I buy in Mexico?

I am going to Mexico on vacation on a cruise ship. We will be in Puerto Vallarta, Cabo, and Mazatlan. I have become a fan of tequila, but up in Washington the prices are high and the selection is limited. What are some good tequilas that I can get in Mexico to either try while I am down there or bring back a bottle? I am not looking for anything too pricy or high end, but wouldn't discount it. Mainly I would like to find stuff that you just can't get in WA. Age doesn't matter, I like both the blanco and anejo, mainly I just want some decent stuff. Bonus points if it comes in a fun or unusual bottle.
posted by markblasco to Food & Drink (16 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I enjoy Corralejo Tequila very much. Look for tall, thin red or blue bottles. My dad always brings multiple bottles back after every trip to Mexico. Also, grab some authentic mezcal if you can find it.
posted by gnutron at 1:07 PM on January 25, 2008

This may be out of your price range, but look for Herradura "Selection Suprema". In my humble, sodden, stumbling experience, this stuff is ambrosia.
posted by browse at 1:07 PM on January 25, 2008

When Item and I were in Mexico over the holidays, we noticed tequila guns and rifles for sale. We lusted after them; they ranged from $59.95 to $129.95. The tequila was pretty decent, too. I'd never seen tequila guns/rifles before, such a funny concept!

That should satisfy the "fun or unusual bottle" requirement.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 1:11 PM on January 25, 2008

Just the bottle of the Iguana Edition from La Cofradía has quite a lot of resale value in the states.
posted by glibhamdreck at 1:14 PM on January 25, 2008

Fancy glassware is for tourists and export. It's beautiful and cool looking, but typically the non blown glass cactus bottle is a better deal. (But I like fun glassware for glassware's sake, just don't assume the proportion of quality to glassware keeps.)

Decent is in the eye of the beholder. Some people like that triple distilled, almost vodka taste of a Porfidio Blanco. Some like super rich oakiness of a Don Julio Anejo. Figure out the kind of tastes you like in tequila. Look at reviews.

Unlike other liquors, tequila doesn't get better with age once it's out of the cask.

There are tons of review sites for tequila.

However, there are so many tequilas that are good, and cheap, in Mexico. Part of the fun is just getting something that strikes your fancy. As long as it's 100% agave and actual tequila (not just mescal), it's bound to be somewhat enjoyable. (Even some mescals can be great.)
posted by Gucky at 1:15 PM on January 25, 2008

Seconding Corralejo. It seems to be the best buy acrossed the border. Just check prices before you go so you know what the better buy is. As much as I like Corralejo, Corazon Anejo is definitely my favorite, though it doesn't seem like as much of a bargain as the Corralejo.
posted by piedmont at 1:15 PM on January 25, 2008

Del Maguey Mezcal Santo Domingo Alebrradas.
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:16 PM on January 25, 2008

Yes, it's a mescal. There are some excellent mescals that get overlooked because people are obsessed with tequila.
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:18 PM on January 25, 2008

When I was in Mexico City I ended up purchasing a product that tasted like a mix of tequila and amaretto. I'm not a huge tequila fan, but this stuff was delicious and I haven't seen it anywhere else.
posted by dripdripdrop at 1:36 PM on January 25, 2008

I got Herradura (blanco) when I was there & it was pretty good & all agave. But that was a random purchase. I googled it and the company was bought by the company that has Jack Daniels and Sky Vodka, so it'll likely be more available in the U.S. soon if it's isn't already.
posted by ejaned8 at 3:15 PM on January 25, 2008

If you want the best of the best, try Jose Cuervo Reserva de la Familia. The boxes are beautiful, and many people agree it's the best tequila you can find right now. It's pricy though, about $100. The next in my list would be Don Julio 1942. Both are añejos.

Herradura, Don Julio and Corralejo are very good. I wouldn't buy a regular Cuervo tequila bottle. And yes, try to find some mezcal, preferably without the worm. There are tequila liquors too (like irish cream), I like Dobel which is cajeta flavored.
posted by clearlydemon at 3:30 PM on January 25, 2008

2nding the Herradurra.
posted by tdischino at 3:33 PM on January 25, 2008

There is a Tequila liqeuor you can pretty much only get in Mexico (or at least you could only get it there a few years ago). Agavero is the name I think. It's a little tourist-y, but it has this wonderful smooth, aged, spiced flavor. I looked all over for it... and then bought it in the airport.
posted by Mozzie at 5:08 PM on January 25, 2008

I'm no Tequila expert, but of the 3 cities you're visiting, you may have the best prices/selection/freshness in Puerto Vallarta, as it's in Jalisco, which is the Agave growing state of Mexico. Most of the Tequila factories are near by. Check with your cruise ship, they probably offer excursions to tour the various Tequila factories around Puerto Vallara, similar to 'Wine Tasting' tours you can take in Napa Valley. They'll show you agave fields, how it's harvested and turned into Tequila. You can sample a bunch of local, smaller, mom & pop brands this way and buy what you like. They'll even teach you HOW to drink Tequila and properly enjoy it (no lime and salt, gringo!). And buying directly from the factory may be the cheapest way.
posted by afx114 at 5:23 PM on January 25, 2008

Not being able to get La Cofradia reposado in the U.S. was what made me ask this question, which may or may not be useful to you.

So yeah, bring me back a bottle of La Cofradia reposado.
posted by ikkyu2 at 8:10 PM on January 25, 2008

I was down there recently and picked up a couple of bottles of Hacienda De Chihuahua Sotol. I guess it is similar to tequila but made from a different plant. It's mainly made in Chihuahua and it really smooth and tasty over ice. A bit more information here.
posted by PHINC at 8:19 AM on January 26, 2008

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