Tag Archives: Tequila

Adios Long Island. Hola Applebees!

Applebees has taken an old staple for heavy drinking and released a PG-21 version.

Traditionally, the Adios Motherfucker starts out life as a Long Island Iced Tea, but instead of adding Sweet & Sour Mix along with Coca-Cola, you throw in 1 shot of Blue Curaçao, instead. This means the drink is utterly lacks any non-alcoholic component, save the ice.

Applebees now offers a watered down version of this recklessly strong classic. It still boasts a blend of vodka, tequila, rum, gin, triple sec, and blue curaçao—but they lighten the pours so that Sweet & Sour plus Sierra Mist also fit in the glass.

I promise you that this drink will be an underweight sugar-bomb, but through the month of September they cost only $1. In a cute little homage to this drink’s roots—as well as to the passing of Summer—they simply call it, Adios.

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High Altitude Agave Makes Better Tequila

The environmental characteristics of an agave farm at high altitude will be quite different of those on a farm at sea level—which directly affects the eventual flavor of Tequila.

Higher elevations are stressful on plants due to a relative scarcity of water and nutrients (both run downhill when it rains and accumulate in valleys and lowlands). The Agave’s response to such conditions is to develop higher levels of sugar & flavor.

Thus, Agave grown at higher altitudes will make better-tasting Tequila than agave grown at sea level.

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Here’s Why Most Liquors Have A 40% A.B.V.

Sure, liqueurs like your Frangelico and your Peach Schnapps are going to have a 15-22% A.B.V. (Alcohol By Volume). And yes, some stronger liquors boast an alcohol content of 62-72%. Bacardi 151 jumps to mind!

But have you ever noticed that the vast majority of your run-of-the-mill-spirits sit at 40% A.B.V.? Chances are the last whiskey, gin, vodka, rum, or tequila that you ordered had an alcohol content of 40%.

Liquor emerges from the still at nearly 100%—which is far too potent for both practicality, as well as most peoples’ taste. So distillers water the booze down to 40%—which is the benchmark simply because it is the lowest A.B.V. legally allowed (without being labeled a liqueur).

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“Vile Rice Wine”

Sake is a wine that is made from fermented rice, instead of grapes. It is about 8,000 years old, having originated in the Henan Province of China.

Contrary to popular belief, Sake does not need to be served warm. In fact, it should not be served warm! This is a marketing gimmick that helps poor-quality sake go down more smoothly—just like the salt and lime with tequila (spoiler alert!).

In 1896 somebody at the New York Times had the pleasure of reviewing Sake for the first time. They described it as a, “Vile rice wine,” with a, “markedly poisonous effect.” It would seem that in the last 123 years we have come quite a ways in appreciating this unique beverage…except for drinking it warm!

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Agave Trifecta

There are 208 species of agave. Pulque, tequila, and mezcal are made from different ones & through different means.

Pulque tastes slightly sour with notes of overripe pear & banana, with a funky aroma. The resulting drink is 4-6% ABV.

Silver tequila tastes herbaceous and fresh. Reposado and Añejo tequilas are barrel aged and lend color and smoothness.

Mezcal tastes distinctly vegetal and smokey.

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Agave Wine

Pulque is an alcoholic beverage (4 – 6% abv) dating back to Aztec times and made from the fermented sap of agave plants. Unlike Tequila or Mezcal, Pulque is not distilled. Instead, it is consumed with wild yeast that is still active—giving it a slightly sour taste with notes of overripe pear & banana, and a particularly funky aroma.

A single agave prepared for making Pulque can produce 1 gallon of sap daily—for a lifetime total of up to 250 gallons (946 L). This is much more sap than the plant could hold at any one time.

To achieve this, Pulque makers subject the agaves to a very particular process. First, as the flowering stalk of the agave plant forms it is cut off. This keeps the plant growing wider, and not taller. Next, the wound is covered, and the plant is allowed to swell for several months.

Then, the wound is deliberately punctured and allowed to rot—at which point the decayed interior is scooped out. After the inside wall is repeatedly scraped the plant’s sap begins to flow profusely in an attempt to treat the wound.

Instead, the sap is continuously collected by a rubber tube for fermentation.

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