Where Local and Global Appetites Collide

National Tequila Day – July 24

National Tequila Day
National Tequila Day

What does tequila make you think of? Perhaps a frosty margarita or for more originality – on the rocks (my preference) or some shots with lime?

Did you know that we in the USA drink 76 percent of all tequila exported from Mexico? I wonder what state drinks the most?

Did you know that it takes 8 years for the blue agave to reach maturity before being harvested?

And did you know that in order to be labeled “tequila” a bottle must have 51 percent blue agave?

Tucson is fortunate to be home of the World Margarita Championship in October and the Agave Festival in April. It’s also home to Blanco Tacos & Tequila in La Encantada (2905 E. Skyline Drive) where there are more than 60 kinds of tequila to tempt your tastebuds.

Not all tequila is alike. For instance, Blanco (the tequila) has a sharp bite with a hot finish with notes of citrus and freshly cut grass.

Resposado has a silkier finish than Blanco. With hints of vanilla, almond, oak, honey and butterscotch, Resposado exudes a hint of earthiness.

With less alcohol, Anejo boasts the subtlety of chocolate, caramel, burnt honey, yam, strong butterscotch and tobacco. Anejo could be sipped with dessert.

There you have it. Ask for a flight and sip vs. chug or enjoy a perfectly crafted tequila cocktail. A knowledgeable bartender can guide you. Here in Tucson, some upscale restaurants have tequila dinners.

And if you’re still reading and are fascinated by the subject matter of tequila, author Gary Nabhan wrote Tequila!: A Natural and Cultural History. I reviewed it a decade ago: But after reading ¡Tequila!, vivid images of blue valleys and hard labor come to mind.

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