You know that tequila must be trendy when Justin Timberlake comes out with his own bottle of the stuff. The ex-Mouseketeer is behind the launch of the new brand called 901 (as in "no matter where or when you experience the tequila, it's always 9:01"). It's a reference to his hometown Memphis area code, actually. But he's not the only one bringing tequila's sexiness back.
Joanne Weir just published "Tequila: A Guide to Types, Flights, Cocktails, and Bites," chock-full of color photos, recipes, and an explanation of how the "Agave Girls" group began (celebrity chef and Epicurious blogger Traci Des Jardins is a member).
In New York , the fancy mixologists from the impossibly-trendy-but-also-quite-delicious bar Death & Co recently opened a dedicated tequila destination, Mayahuel.
And new bottles of super-premium tequila continue to pop up nationwide. Herewith, the latest roundup. Note: All are 80 proof and made with 100% agave. Price range: $37 to $1,099. ¡Ay, caramba!
Gran Centenario Rosangel Hibiscus-Infused Reposado ($37)
Salmon-pink color (like a rosé), discernibly different flavors (some pepper but also some floral notes and even cotton candy) in an art-deco-inspired bottle. Not sure who would drink this, when, or why. To add color?
901 Silver Tequila ($40)
Justin Timberlake's tequila plays it safe: It's perfectly clear, somewhat earthy, and dry. Not bad but not exceptional either. I'll wait for the 902.
Casa Noble Tequila Anejo ($60)
Certified organic (and aged two years), honey-amber in color, vanilla/caramel in nose, quite smooth with sweet butterscotch notes in the finish. Also available in Reposado and something called "Crystal," which is presumably the blanco or silver (unaged) option.
Sauza Tres Generacions Plata Tequila ($40)
Fancy new bottle has the family crest (from 1873) as well as a faux-artisanal "beaten metal" neck. Flavor is spicy at first, then fruity, with a delicious long finish.
Voodoo Tiki Tequila Colección Privada de La Familia Extra Añejo ($1,099)
By far the wildest product packaging I have ever seen (description is in my previous blog post). The tequila itself is aged three years, and looks like a white wine, pale yellow. It surprised me by not having too much oak or wood. The agave flavor shines through with hints of pineapple, coconut, ginger, and citrus. Very sippable on its own. Actually, rather addictive. Absurdly tall bottle makes it hard to store in a bar or in a cabinet.
Not yet out: Ed Hardy, the vintage tattoo artist whose name now adorns all kinds of clothes, is coming out with a tequila, rumored to be called Paco Chiocano Tequila By Christian Audigier, in June 2009.
By James Oliver Cury
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