Updated: Jan 24, 2020
Apologies, it's been a while since I have posted. I'm having a dry start to 2020 so I'm trying to avoid focusing on tequila... Argh! But I just came across a recent article in Vinepair about tequila and it resonated.
Vinepair interviewed bartenders (12) across the U.S. and asked them "What's the Most Underrated Tequila?". The clear winner was Fortaleza, with 3 of the 12 mentioning this brand. Also mentioned was another AllThingsTequila.com favorite - Tapatio. When I read this article I took a pic of the top of my bar - no staging! Note, there are many more tequilas in the bar below.
As my tequila discovery journey matures, I continue to return to these brands. They offer value and the natural taste and aroma of baked agave. I can buy a liter bottle of Tapatio Reposado for around $US 40, So I can afford to use it as a margarita foundation. For a sipping tequila, I return to Fortaleza Blanco and Still Strength and I'm always delighted.
I really can't see the point in paying over $100 for an aged tequila which adds Barrell flavors that mask the agave. It's hard to be too critical of people who sip Anejo and proclaim in ecstasy how "smooth" it is. If you haven't been to a distillery and been hit in the face with the aroma of baking agaves, then "smoothness" in tequila may be what you are after.
I have many friends asking me what tequila I recommend, and I always recommend those tequilas which are made authentically/traditionally. Fortaleza and Tapatio are at the top of my recommendation list - G4 and Cascahuin, both hot and increasingly available brands, are also often included. Unless you know your bartender or liquor store person well, don't trust their recommendations. They are incentivized to sell a product with the highest margin and move inventory, or they simply may not have expertise with tequila. You are much better off getting the Tequila Match app, by https://tequilamatchmaker.com, and reviewing the ratings and comments on the available tequilas prior to purchase - or you can just trust my advice. (Note, I don't have any sponsors, but I have toured the Fortaleza and Cascahuin distilleries - I paid my own travel.)
Please share and I welcome your comments. Salud!