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13 Amazing Tequila Facts.

Because we’re celebrating National Tequila day, here are 13 things you never knew about tequila! 

Tequila is one of the most misunderstood drinks, surrounded by years of myths and legends. We’re here to help you unravel the facts.

1. Tequila is plant based.

Sharp pointed agave plant leaves

Tequila is made from the blue agave plant or agave tequilana,  mainly sourced from around the Mexican city of Tequila in the state of Jalisco. According to WebMD, the core of the plant contains aguamiel or “honey water” which is used for syrup (and tequila) production.

2. Tequila Is Technically A Mezcal.

Mezcal-+-Cocktail

Tequila is technically a Mezcal, but Mezcal is not a tequila. the main difference between the two is the plant. All tequila must be produced using blue agave, whereas a variety of agave plants can be used to make a single mezcal batch.

 

3. The Machete Used To Chop Agave Leaves Is Called A “Coa”.

coa knife

A very unique type of machete is used to chop agave leaves. It is called a Coa and has circular blades.

4. The Men Who Use The Coa Are Called Jimadors.

coa machete

The men who wield the Coa are called Jimadors.

5.  The Agave Heart Is Used To Make Tequila.

agave heart

Tequila is made by removing the heart or piña, of the agave plant, which can weigh anywhere from 80 to 200 pounds when harvested. This heart is stripped of its leaves and then cooked to remove the sap, which is fermented and distilled.

6. Tequila Does NOT Contain Psychedelic Properties.

Hypnotic Nerd Eyes

In the 1950s, tequila experienced a surge in popularity after California residents mistakenly believed it to contain psychedelic properties. However, they were merely confusing mezcal (which is what tequila is) with mescaline (which is the psychoactive alkaloid of the peyote plant).

7. Tequila can be turned into the diamonds.

A diamond worker examining a piece of diamond.

Tequila is treasure! Physicists at the National Autonomous University of Mexico figured out a way to make artificial diamonds out of tequila. The synthetic diamonds are too small to be turned into jewellery, but they can be used for an array of electronic and industrial purposes.

8.  Tequila Aficionados Usually Don’t Do Shots.

shot glasses

Tequila aficionados usually sip tequila from a special tequila glass or brandy snifter. That way, the agave flavors and aromas can be properly enjoyed.

9. An Unopened Bottle Of Tequila Can Last For Years.

Take a Shot

Once you open a bottle, you should consume within one or two months before oxidization and evaporation lower the quality of the tequila and destroys the agave profile. So, you want to drink up within 3 to 6 months, at which point it becomes more like a bourbon.

10. Some Tequila Is Still Made Using Ancient Techniques.

tequila ancient

Some premium tequilas, use the “Tahona” process in which a 2-ton volcanic stone wheel slowly crushes the shredded, cooked agave. The agave juice and fibers are then placed in pine wood casks for fermentation. During the next step, distillation, the fermented “mosto” (or basic liquid) is distilled once with the agave fiber, then again without. Then it is fine filtered and balanced to produce tequila.

11. To Be Called Tequila, It Must Be Produced In Mexico.

tequila mexico

Just as true champagne must hail from France, true tequila must come from Mexico, mainly in the western Mexican state of Jalisco. The states of Guanajuato, Michoacán, Nayarit, and Tamaulipas are also acceptable.

12. Real Tequila Doesn’t Have A Worm In It.

gusano rojo liquor

Having a worm crawling around the bottom of a bottle of tequila actually originated with tequila’s “lower-quality” cousin, mezcal , largely as a marketing ploy. The gusano is the larvae of a type of moth that lives on the agave plant.

13. There Are Different Kinds of Tequila

tequila barrels

According to Tequila.net, the main types of tequila are split into two categories: 100% Blue Agave, and Tequila Mixto (Mixed). These, in turn, are then divided into five types of Tequila: Tequila Silver – Blanco – Plata – White – Platinum; Tequila Gold – Joven – Oro; Tequila Reposado; Tequila Añejo (extra aged); and Tequila Extra Añejo (extra, extra aged).

 

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