(credit: Image by Freepik)
Looking for the best tequila or mezcal for Cinco de Mayo? We’ve got you covered. Commemorating the anniversary of Mexico’s victory over the Second French Empire at the Battle of Puebla in 1862, Cinco de Mayo is a yearly celebration often mistaken for Mexican Independence Day. So, if you are looking for a good tequila, mezcal or sotol to try, whether neat or in your favorite margarita, be sure to snag one of the bottles below.
(credit: Loco Tequila)
Loco Tequila, Mexico’s first and only ultra-luxury terruño (terroir-based) tequila from the El Arenal region of Jalisco, Mexico presents their Loco Tequila Blanco ($135) with a 40% ABV. After three years of success in the Mexico market, the passion project of Pedro Padilla, Gabriel Roqueñí and Juan Pablo Torres Padilla is making its debut in the US market. Unlike other tequilas on the market, Loco Tequila fully commits to crafting a distillation that showcases the very essence of the agave–it is the first tequila house to adopt the “double jima” or double shaving of the agave piñas with every single batch production, presenting a creamy and well-structured tequila. Furthermore, each bottle is numbered and delivered in a unique case designed by legendary artist Jan Hendrix.
(credit to: El Cristiano)
Crafted in limited quantities, the El Cristiano Extra Anejo Black Label ($130) is aged for three years in American Oak. A sipping tequila of unrivaled complexity, this tequila provides a balance between agave spirit and tasting notes of white oak, raisin, dates and a finish that is smooth and luxurious. The quickly growing brand out of the Highlands of Jalisco, MX also supports many children charities in Arandas, MX and is available nationwide at top restaurants and widespread retailers such as Total Wines and More.
(credit: Montelobos Mezcal)
Uniquely distilled for a third time with turkey breast, seasonal fruits and spices, Montelobos Pechuga ($129.99) is made from organic agave cultivated in Espadin. Montelobos prides itself in using traditional production methods such as a single stone tahona pulled by a mule for milling and a distillation process of copper vat heated with firewood, to ensure a warm, smoky sip. Creating flavors of roasted almonds and maple honey, ensuring a warm, smoky sip, the mezcal is fermented in open pine wood vats with no added yeasts of nutrients.
(credit: Doña Vega)
Doña Vega’s Tobalá ($129.99) is harvested from wild Tobalá maguey which is found in high desert canyons. Harvested responsibly and produced by a fifth-generation women-owned farm in a small town outside Oaxaca, Doña Vega’s Tobalá has a creamy and velvety mouthfeel. Deemed the ‘king of mezcals’, Tobalá is very highly sought after, presenting a sweet nose and long, smooth finish. With tasting notes of smoke (but a more subtle smoke profile), earth, leather and cedar with hints of lemon zest, this mezcal has a 43% ABV.
(credit: Catedral Mezcal)
As the No. 1 most awarded new mezcal in 2022, Catedral Mezcal offers six types of mezcals, with Catedral Mezcal Tobala ($89.99) most recently winning a gold medal at the San Diego Wine and Spirits Competition. Founded by father-daughter duo Jeff and Sydney Block, Catedral Mezcal brings farm to bottle through partnerships with local communities. Artisanal and strictly made by hand, their Tobalá is distilled in copper with zero additives and has tasting notes of nuts and toffee.
(credit: Fósforo Mezcal)
Directly translated as “match” in Spanish, Fósforo launched in 2022 and their Fósforo Tobalá ($99) uses only wild yeast and some of the largest Tobalá agave in Mexico. Created by a fourth generation mezcalero, the mezcal reflects the terroir of the Huehuetlán el Grande region of Puebla, Mexico. Once cooked and fermented, mezcalero Aarón Alva Sánchez distills the Tobalá agave using copper stills, presenting mezcal joven (‘young’ in Spanish), one that is unaged and crystal clear in color and bottled at 90 proof.
Unlike most mezcal, Bosscal Pechuga De Conejo ($99.99) is from Durango, Mexico – not Oaxaca where most mezcals come from. It is made using very traditional techniques from Durango, including wild grown agave, open air in ground pit fermentation, naturally occurring yeast, and distillation in a wood still called El Veijo. Unique to this mezcal is that it is triple distilled with a skinless rabbit suspended in the still during the third distillation, allowing the liquid vapors to pass through it (“pechuga” means ‘breast’ in Spanish and “conejo” means ‘rabbit’). This results in a truly unique, rich mezcal with a light smoke very crisp and smooth with citrus, orange and blood orange.
(credit: Los Magos Sotol)
Made from 100% wild grown sotol that is sourced ethically and sustainably from the Chihuahuan Desert, Los Magos Sotol Blanco ($59.99) is a triple-distilled sotol, ensuring a smooth sip whether drinking it straight or mixed. The ‘newest’ Mexican spirit quickly gaining popularity here in the States, sotol is made from wild-harvested sotol plants which are neither agave nor cactus, but rather have long spine-clad leaves, creating a spirit category of its own. Los Magos, co-founded by two natives of Chihuahua, uses artisanal techniques that have been passed down through six generations of sotoleros to create their award-winning Sotol Blanco (which doesn’t have any additives). This blend presents complex notes of citrus, black pepper, light smoke, honey, and eucalyptus that leads to an herbaceous finish.
(credit: Grand Mayan Tequila)
With tasting notes of oak and dark chocolate, Grand Mayan Reposado ($89.99) is aged in ex-American whiskey casks for six months and finished in ex-Cognac barrels for an additional two months (for a total of eight months resting in barrels). It’s smooth for sipping, full on the palate and leads into a layered and delicious long finish.What further separates this tequila from others is that each tequila is bottled in traditional Talavera ceramic decanters and the Reposado bottles are adorned with 24K gold applique applied by hand.
(credit: El Tequileño)
El Tequileño Añejo Gran Reserva ($89.99) is distilled in copper pot stills and aged in American and French oak barrels for 2 years. Founded in 1959 by the legendary tequila industry pioneer, Don Jorge Salles Cuervo, El Tequileño is exclusively produced at La Guarreña distillery, 51 Chiapas, Tequila, Jalisco; no other tequila has ever been produced there. They harvest only the finest Blue Agave from the premium growing region, Los Altos de Jalisco and locally source the mineral-rich volcanic spring water from El Volcan de Tequila. This tequila is best enjoyed neat and provides aromas of oak and vanilla with a taste of sweet spices, orange, and caramel.
(credit: Courtesy of Desolas Mezcal)
Characterized by its low smoke, agave forward and fresh botanical flavor profile, Desolas Mezcal is a unique, female-founded mezcal brand. Desolas Mezcal Blanco ($52.99) isdelicately handcrafted from 100% Salmiana agave in San Luis Potosi, Mexico unlike most mezcal which is made from espadin that grows in Oaxaca, Mexico. Inspired by traditional time-honored techniques of mezcal production, the Salmiana agave is cooked in above-ground ovens presenting a smooth, balanced spirit with a fresh aroma and smooth and balanced taste.
(credit: PATRÓN Tequila)
PATRÓN Silver ($59.99) is the earliest of the PATRÓN expressions, was the ultimate game changer. Passionately handcrafted from only three of the finest 100% naturally perfect ingredients – Weber Blue Agave, water and yeast – this smooth and sweet tequila is carefully distilled in small batches at Hacienda PATRÓN distillery in Jalisco, Mexico. With aromas of fruits and citrus and a light pepper finish, PATRÓN Silver elevated a category dominated by low-priced, ‘mixto’ tequila and established itself as the benchmark against which all other tequilas are measured.
(credit: Casa Don Ramón)
Made from 100% Blue Agave from the highlands of Jalisco, Tequila Don Ramón Platinium Cristalino Añejo ($62 via Reserve Bar) is double-distilled and aged in American oak barrels for 12 months. Its smooth taste is thanks to its proprietary finishing method, presenting a richer and robust profile. The Cristalino clear with a subtle straw tint comes to be thanks to its complex filtration process giving the tequila an aroma of wood and spices and notes of nuts, vanilla, cacao and cinnamon.