Tequila offers a world of possibilities for the adventurous bartender. Not only are there a myriad of options on the market these days, you’ve got different levels of age happening (all the way from fresh off the still blancos to extra-anejo); when used in cocktails they open up the realm of classic cocktails to new, exciting flavours.
Here’s three tequila recipes to muck about with using the good stuff from Jalisco.
- 45ml Patron Reposado
- 30ml Campari
- 15ml dry vermouth
- 15ml sweet vermouth
- 1 dash of bitters
Stir all ingredients on good ice. Garnish with an orange slice. Adapted from a recipe by Gaz Regan.
First up, a simple tweak to a beloved classic, the Negroni. You could, if you like, simply switch out the gin in a Negroni and replace with quality blanco or reposado tequila, keeping the equal parts schema intact. You could. Should you like to tweak it a step further, go with this version here, adding dry vermouth to the picture and a little more tequila.
Shake with ice and strain over crushed ice in a rocks glass. Adapted from a recipe provided by Harry Saunders.
Here’s the next step along the road. You know that tequila plays well with berries — you need only look at the rather smashable El Diablo for evidence — and you know that citrus is a perfect partner, too. So, this tequila take on the Dick Bradsell modern classic, The Bramble, makes plenty of sense.
- 45ml Arette Fuerte 101 Blanco
- 20ml Dolin blanc vermouth
- 10ml Luxardo maraschino liqueur
- 1 dash Fee Brothers lemon bitters
- 1 lemon twist, as garnish
Stir over ice and strain into a chilled Nick & Nora glass. Add the garnish. Adapted from a recipe by Sky Huo.
Then, something a little more challenging. We don’t mean in the technique department — this drink is inspired by the Martinez — but in the straightforward booziness of the cocktail. It’s balanced well, you’ll just want to ensure you’re using a quality blanco tequila for the base, because this drink is all about the agave.
ArteNOM Seleccion 1414 Tequila Reposado
Made at the Vivanco Destileria El Ranchito in the Tequila highlands of Arandas, this is estate-grown, well-balanced 100% blue agave tequila produced in pot stills and carrying a rich taste.
Aged in oak barrels for more than two months, Patrón Reposado offers aromas of oak and fresh agave on the nose, which follows through to the palate along with some citrus and honeyed character, leading to a light and floral finish.
Arette Fuerte 101 Blanco
Tequila Arette has been a bartender favourite for a while, and this 50.5% ABV blanco expression — fuerte translates to English as strong — is one you’ll like to deploy in your cocktails. There’s no dilution, just great agave flavour.