Tequila Buying Guide | Best Mexican Tequila Straight Up

by The Tasting Alliance Team  |  08.30.2022

Tequila is a delicious spirit that has been around for centuries and its popularity and relevance in culture today is undeniable. The history of tequila is as rich and complex as its delightful flavor and aroma. Tequila is made from the blue agave plant, which is native to Mexico. The plant takes 8 to 10 years to mature. During that time, the agave is carefully monitored to ensure that it reaches the correct sugar content.

Once it is ready, the agave is harvested and cooked in an oven until it releases its delectable juice. That juice is then fermented and distilled to create tequila. Tequila is enjoyed by people all over the world, and its popularity continues to grow steadily. It has become a staple in many cocktails, and it can also be enjoyed neat or on the rocks. Thanks to its complex flavor profile and deep history, tequila is one of the most popular spirits in the world.

Tequila Drinks with Lime and Salt

What does Tequila Taste Like?

When you sip tequila, you’re instantly transported to a sun-drenched vacation spot, sipping cocktails by a luxurious pool or beach. At least, that’s what we imagine. The truth is, the taste of tequila can vary depending on where the agave is grown, who is producing it, and how long it is aged. But generally speaking, tequila has a fruity, sweet, and earthy taste; with notes of honey, citrus, vanilla, caramel, oak, and black pepper. Aged tequila tends to be smoother and richer than the other varieties. So next time you’re mixing up some margaritas for Cinco de Mayo, go ahead and splurge on the good stuff. You won’t regret it.

Tequila Drinks at the Beach

The 5 Types of Tequila

Tequila! The versatile spirit that can be used to celebrate life’s joyous moments or drown out your sorrows after an unhappy love affair. But did you know there are actually five different types of tequila? Here is a quick guide for determining which one will best suit any occasion!

Blanco Tequila:

If you want to get your taste buds excited, then it’s time for Blanco Tequila. The taste of a Blanco Tequila is pure and refreshing, like the blue skies after an effervescent storm. This type of tequila has been bottled without aging or adding any colorants. These spirits tend to pack a punch while still being light on the taste buds. If you’re looking for that classic, traditional flavor, this is the tequila for you.

Reposado Tequila:

Reposado Tequila is the perfect drink for those who want an easy-going, yet bold flavor. It has hints of sweetness that will leave you wanting yet another sip! The aging process brings out the complex taste in this spirit, making it more flavorful than blanco tequila, yet still easy to drink. Aging the tequila for one to three months also gives reposados their signature color and complexity, making them perfect for those who want traditional flavors without all of those harsh notes you find elsewhere in your bar shelf.

Añejo Tequila:

There are many different types of tequila, but if you want something with an extra layer of complexity, then añejo might be your best bet! This variety becomes more powerful as it ages, giving it an earthy taste with sweet, fruity undertones. Perfect if you’re looking for something particularly complex and flavorful. When you want to spice up your night, there’s no better way than with an añejo. This variety has been aged for three years and comes in many different flavors that will leave even those who do not typically enjoy tequila asking for another drink!

Extra Añejo Tequila:

You can’t go wrong with an extra añejo tequila. It’s aged for more than three years, which makes it the oldest and rarest type of tequila out there! The taste will take your breath away with its smoothness and give you that deep, amber color desired in cocktails or shot glasses. This tequila is best enjoyed slowly, sip after delectable sip. It is the most premium and aged form of tequila with a wonderfully rich, smooth, and complex taste. Salud!

Cristalino Tequila:

Imagine a smooth, refreshing glass of iced tea on a hot day. Cristalino is like that, but with the added complexity of an aged tequila. It’s like the best of both worlds: the crisp, bright notes of a blanco combined with the richness and flavor of an añejo. Tequila cristalino is an aged tequila that has been filtered (often through charcoal) to remove the naturally occurring colors it picks up from spending time inside the barrel. The filtration process strips the color and some of the tequila’s woodier notes without removing the rich flavors and textures imparted by the barrel. The result is spectacular!

Expensive Tequila on a Rustic Wood Bar

What is the Best Mexican Tequila Straight Up?

In order to find out what the best tequilas are, we hold World Spirit Competitions in which we sample hundreds of spirits and compare all of them thoroughly. This is truly where the fun begins! After the judges work their magic, this gives us a great idea of what each variety and brand can offer us and which one is the most preferred for certain occasions. Whether it’s for a party or a relaxing nightcap, we’ll know exactly which bottle to reach for.

What is the Best Unaged Tequila?

Tequila Ocho Plata Blanco Tequila Bottle

Tequila Ocho Plata

There is simply no better unaged tequila available on the market today than Tequila Ocho Plata. The Camarena family takes great care in growing and harvesting the agave, and the end result is a tequila that is both mineral-rich and bursting with flavor. Made with the finest overripe agaves, Tequila Ocho Plata is sure to please even the most discerning palate. The agave brings with it the essence of the rancho from which it grew, making this drink a unique and unforgettable experience. It’s subtle caramel and cooked agave please the senses, with a nice and sweet taste from the slightly burnt marshmallow notes. Tequila Ocho Plata has a lovely, lingering, sweet finish that has to be experienced to be believed.

Learn More: https://thetastingalliance.com/bottles/tequila-ocho-plata/

What is the Best Reposado Tequila?

Lobos 1707 Reposado Tequila Bottle

Lobos 1707 Reposado Tequila

There are many factors that go into making a great reposado tequila and Lobos 1707 definitely has them all. The first factor is the agave. Lobos 1707 Tequila is made from 100% pure Blue Weber agave, which gives it a wonderfully robust flavor. Second is the aging process. The tequila is rested for over six slow months in American white oak barrels, which gives it its perfect flavor. Finally, it is blended with a touch of Lobos 1707 Tequila Extra Añejo and finished at its leisure in historic PX sherry barrels using the solera method. This all comes together to create a tequila that is absolutely amazing and the best reposado tequila around.

Learn More: https://thetastingalliance.com/bottles/lobos-1707-reposado-tequila/

What is the Best Añejo Tequila?

Calirosa Añejo Tequila Bottle


The deep, rich color of Calirosa Añejo Tequila is a testament to the care and aging that has gone into it. This tequila is aged for thirty-six months in California red wine barrels, resulting in a beverage that is bursting with flavor. Notes of vanilla, caramel, butterscotch, and leather are all present, making for an enthralling drinking experience. If you’re looking for a tequila that’s sure to impress, look no further than Calirosa Añejo.

Learn More: https://thetastingalliance.com/bottles/calirosa-anejo-tequila/

What is the Best Añejo Extra Tequila?

CaliFino Extra Añejo Tequila Bottle


When it comes to extra añejo tequila, CaliFino is the best of the best. This premium tequila is made with 100% Blue Weber agave, and is aged for a minimum of 7 years in American Oak barrels. But the real kicker is that it’s finished for an additional year in French cognac barrels, which gives it hints of vanilla and tropical fruits on the nose. It has a sweet and creamy palate with a long fruity finish. If you’re looking for the perfect extra añejo tequila to sip on, look no further than CaliFino.

Learn More: https://thetastingalliance.com/bottles/califino-extra-anejo-tequila/

What is the Best Tequila Cristalino?

Don Julio 70 Añejo Cristalino Tequila Bottle

Don Julio 70 Añejo Cristalino Tequila

The Don Julio 70 Añejo Cristalino Tequila is a must-try for any tequila lover. It’s aged eighteen months in American white oak barrels, which gives it a delicious, crisp agave flavor. The tequila is then carefully filtered to bring out its amazing flavor profile, which includes highlights of honey and toasted oak. On the tongue, it’s creamy with a lingering vanilla finish – simply delicious!

Learn More: https://thetastingalliance.com/bottles/don-julio-70-cristalino-tequila/