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Say Goodbye To Inexpensive Tequila


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For what it's worth, a fair amount of agave got pulled out and corn was put in when the ethanol boom started.  I'm guessing that agave can be put back in and in the 7 years it takes for the agave to mature, things will get back to equilibrium.  Maybe a little higher than they were before. 

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Most tequila has been pretty much crap lately anyways.

Most *imported* tequila has been pretty much crap, with Patron leading the pack under the false guise of being a quality product.

I'm pretty sure that right now, you can get duty-free tequila in Cancun airport that's better than you can find anywhere in DC; a few years ago, American Wine Distributors in Embarcadero, CA was importing some sensational tequilas (some of which wholesaled for $100, and were worth it).

As I type this, I'm, sitting next to an empty bottle of Don Fulano Imperial 5 Year Aí±ejo, brought in by www.tequilaspecialists.com (which no longer exists), years ago. The bottle has been empty for *over two years* - next time you come over, ask me to uncork it and let you have a whiff of whatever air remains inside the bottle - it is incredible.

ETA - Hey, look! I just found it - maybe it's available after all!

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Thank you for placing your order request with Binny's Beverage Depot.

Your Order Request Number is  :) :) :) :) :)

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Napoleon Bonaparte and the Original Top-Shelf Cocktail (throughout history, people have made fun of him for doing this - think about it.)

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For what it's worth, a fair amount of agave got pulled out and corn was put in when the ethanol boom started.  I'm guessing that agave can be put back in and in the 7 years it takes for the agave to mature, things will get back to equilibrium.  Maybe a little higher than they were before. 

I heard an odd story once from an ethnobotanist who worked in Mexico in the mid-twentieth century.  He told me that when the price of agave went up, everyone would plant, thus leading to a glut when all the plants matured, then everyone stopped planting as prices fell, then the few who kept planting got high prices in a couple of seasons when they had the only mature plants, then everyone planted because prices were high...  It is an odd sort of market cycle based on the time it takes agave to mature, and how much the farmer needs cash on hand, or land to use for something else.  I have no idea if this scenario still happens or not.

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Don--

Roberto Rogness, who owns Wine Expo in Santa Monica, also specializes in tequila, selling quite a few obscure top shelf bottlings. A few years ago, he turned me on to Herencia, which he said at the time was his favorite tequila. And he has tasted all of the good ones, to be sure. He gave me sample sized bottles of both the blanco and reposado to try, and though it is hard to believe, we like the blanco better, it is purer in flavor and so smooth. It must be distilled several times. I brought a bottle home with me from L.A. and we doled it out by the thimbleful, not wanting to sully it with lime juice in a Margarita. After searching long and hard, I found it at Schneider's--the only place in DC that sells it, and it ain't cheap (around $55 a bottle, if I remember correctly). If you think that this aí±ejo ^ is the only tequila worth drinking...I'll pour you some Herencia blanco the next time you are at my house.

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If you think that this aí±ejo ^ is the only tequila worth drinking...I'll pour you some Herencia blanco the next time you are at my house.

Zora, I know Roberto from the wine boards. I gratefully accept your offer to try some of the Herencia blanco, although I assure you I think there are many, many tequilas that provide for compelling drinking.

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"Mexico Ships 1st Load of Best Tequila to China"

I saw what happened with wine - your eight-dollar top-shelf margarita is about to become a thing of the past.

It's not like there's a shortage of cheap swilling wines and decent mid-priced wines around, if you know where to look -- the Chinese buy brand names and the rest of the market is relatively unaffected.  And, even though the French can't plant any more La Tache, the Mexicans can plant a lot more agave, so premium distillers can easily expand production to meet demand.

(Besides, according to you, there aren't any inexpensive tequilas worth drinking anyway. :) )

Tip: reposados.

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Where are you getting an $8 top shelf margarita now? I can barely make one at home for that cost, given the expense of a decent orange liquor.

I was wondering if someone was going to call me out on that one. :)

(I just pulled that number out of the air as I was typing, but maybe Taqueria El Poblano, Coyote Grill, Qdoba, or some other suburban strip mall place.)

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Most *imported* tequila has been pretty much crap, with Patron leading the pack under the false guise of being a quality product.

I'm pretty sure that right now, you can get duty-free tequila in Cancun airport that's better than you can find anywhere in DC; a few years ago, American Wine Distributors in Embarcadero, CA was importing some sensational tequilas (some of which wholesaled for $100, and were worth it).

As I type this, I'm, sitting next to an empty bottle of Don Fulano Imperial 5 Year Aí±ejo, brought in by www.tequilaspecialists.com (which no longer exists), years ago. The bottle has been empty for *over two years* - next time you come over, ask me to uncork it and let you have a whiff of whatever air remains inside the bottle - it is incredible.

ETA - Hey, look! I just found it - maybe it's available after all!

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thank you for placing your order request with Binny's Beverage Depot.

Your Order Request Number is  :) :) :) :) :)

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Napoleon Bonaparte and the Original Top-Shelf Cocktail (throughout history, people have made fun of him for doing this - think about it.)

BTW, here's a cute review of the Don Fulano 5 Year. I say "cute" because you can clearly see that, although there's a fair amount of production quality in the video, it's really just a couple of people who fell in love with tequila. The one thing - the only thing - I disagree with is the ever-so-slight implication that the tequila journey is a path, as opposed to a maze. Using coffee as an example, I used to love darker roasts, then I gravitated toward lighter roasts (*), and now I'm reversing course again and heading back to the medium-dark side of town. The typical red wine analogy is Cal Cab -> Bordeaux -> Burgundy, and well, I guess I can't argue :), but, like cheeses, sometimes all you want is a decent wedge of Brie (**).

(*) Because Starbucks came along and fucked up *everything*.

(**) But only unpasteurized Brie de Meaux, quoth the snob-o-la.

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