For many, the taste of Blanco Tequila is like no other. It's not aged, but rather is bottled immediately after the distillation process. This makes it a harsher drink, but the flavors can be bold. It comes in both 100% agave or mixed with other sugars, both of which have unique tastes to offer the drinker. The mixed agave drinks have at least 51% agave in them. For someone who has never tried this drink before, starting off drinking a shot “neat” may be a little too harsh, but it can be done with salt and lime or mixed in a drink for a less harsh introduction. There is a variety of ways to drink either shots or in a mixed drink, which are all perfect for either small get-togethers or large parties.
How to Drink Blanco Tequila
In Mexico, the traditional way to drink Blanco Tequila is neat, which means it has no other ingredients added to it. It can be served chilled, to hide some of the harshness, or at room temperature, which is more traditional. Serving it chilled is generally more for lower quality brands, as they are not as smooth to drink as the better quality brands.
With a Side Drink
Another traditional way to drink this is by having it with a side drink of Sangrita. Both are poured in equal amounts into shot glasses, and the drinker will take a drink from one shot glass and then the other. The Sangrita has a variety of flavors and complements the shot well. The two are not generally mixed, however, so the drinker can taste the distinguished tastes of both.
With Salt and Lime
Though not traditional in Mexico, many people prefer to enjoy their shot with lime and salt. This is more for a party atmosphere, as everyone takes the shots together. It consists of licking your hand, sprinkling a helping of salt on it, and then having a shot and a lime in front of you. You first lick the salt from your hand, quickly drink the shot, and then bite down on the lime. This helps the drink go down as it gets rid of the harshness, though it also takes away some of the flavor. It's also a great way to try this liquor for the first time.
Mixed in a Margarita
The IBA lists the margarita as being 50% tequila, 29% Cointreau, and 21% fresh lime juice. The combination can, however, include other flavors such as strawberry, peach or mango. The margarita can be made with silver, Anejo, or extra enejo, as well as Blanco Tequila, with each giving the margarita a distinct taste. Margaritas generally come in two different forms, frozen or on the rocks. A frozen margarita is mixed with crushed ice to make the perfect summer drink for lounging in the sun. On the rocks, instead, means that the drink is poured over ice cubes and served. Both are served with either salt or sugar on the rim and a slice of lime.
For this drink, very popular in Mexico, you mix one shot with a grapefruit flavored soda. It's then mixed and served on the rocks (over ice cubes) with a wedge of lime on the rim of the glass. Some prefer to add salt to the rim, similar to a margarita.
Another popular mixed drink is the Matador, which consists of one part liquor, two or three parts pineapple juice, and the juice from half of a lime. This is usually mixed with ice to chill the drink, but then strained and poured into a chilled glass.
Other popular mixes include mixing a shot with a carbonated drink or mixing it with a fruit juice. There are as many varieties of mixing shots as there are drinks to mix it with, so many people enjoy experimenting by adding things to their favorite mixes. There's also a list of official cocktails that is handled by the International Bartenders Association (IBA), which can be a great way to discover a new mix you wouldn't have thought of.
There is a variety of brands as well, and each has their own distinct flavor. When choosing a brand for any of the above mentioned drinks, it's important to view not only the brand, but also the quality. You will also want to take the alcohol content into account, especially when mixing into a drink where you may not taste it as much. It is generally produced between 31% and 55% alcohol per volume, but is generally found between 38% and 40% in stores. It can also only be produced in limited areas of Mexico, so a brand that claims to be produced in the United States is not a true brand. It can, however, be bottled in the United States.
If you're looking for a great drink for just a small group of friends over at your house, or you're hosting a large party and want only the best drinks available, this may be one of the better choices for you. With a wide variety of ways to drink it and the variety of brands, you're sure to have a combination that makes everyone happy.
So grab a bottle of Don Julio, Tres Agaves, or Casa Dragones Blanco, and enjoy a shot. Whether you prefer it neat, on the rocks or mixed with other flavors, you're sure to enjoy the bold flavors these drinks have to offer.
What is the Best Blanco Tequila?
For my money, it's Case Dragones blanco. This is the smoothest tequila I've ever had in a blanco edition.