Cheers

Cheers April/May 2018

Cheers is dedicated to delivering hospitality professionals the information, insights and data necessary to drive their beverage business by covering trends and innovations in operations, merchandising, service and training.

Issue link: https://read.epgmediallc.com/i/963465

Contents of this Issue

Navigation

Page 21 of 59

www.cheersonline.com 22 • April/May 2018 "The fun modifi cations to the classic are coming in homemade syrups and sours, craft liqueurs replacing Curaçaos and triple secs—really just using the name 'Margarita' as a vehicle for tequila and new fl avor." As an example, Snapp cites a cocktail made with chamomile- infused Cointreau liqueur and dragonfruit/white-tea syrup with white tequila and lime. Sounds more like a craft cocktail, but drinks like a Margarita, he notes. AGAVE LOVE Tequila has continued its multiyear surge in popularity. The category grew about 8.5% in volume (more than 1.3 million cases) in 2017, and nearly 10% in value, according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the U.S. fi gures released in February. The most impressive growth came at the high-end premium (up 14.1%) and superpremium (12.2%). DISCUS-defi ned high- end premium brands include El Jimador, Cazadores and Hornitos, while superpremium tequilas include Patron, Herradura, Don Julio, Tres Generaciones, Avion and Casa Noble. Tequila selections vary by operation. 400 Rabbits, a cocktail lounge adjacent to the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema location in Austin, TX, has a tightly controlled list of agave spirits—eight brands and 23 tequila expressions, nine brands and 23 mezcals, with a few sotols. Other agave-focused operations go large: At Las Perlas in downtown Los Angeles, one of a number of mezcalerias that have opened to great success in the past few years, more than 400 agave spirits take center stage. New York's La Contente Oeste and La Contente Lower East Side boast more than 200 tequilas and mezcals with prices ranging from $7 to $38 per ounce, depending on the brand. Barrios stocks about 120 tequilas, plus 20 mezcals in what Haglind fi gures is the largest offering in the state. A four-shelf wall looming behind the bar displays the tequilas with the expressions ascending in age, and most reachable only by ladder. Restaurants such as Lubbock, TX-based Abuelo's, with 40-plus units in Texas, the Southeast, Midwest and Southwest, are dependent on national distribution for brands. But the chain still carries 35 to 60 depending on location, says Brian Bell, vice president, beverage for Food Concepts International: DBA Abuelo's. "People walk in the door here and there are two things they're going to count on: draft Mexican beer and a good selection of tequilas to choose from." MARGARITA MAGIC Tequila has managed to cling to its "sour" drink heritage. Most of the cocktails found even at craft cocktail bars today include some form of citrus, for example. The Paloma—tequila with a grapefruit-fl avored soda and a spritz of fresh lime—has been catching on and becoming PHOTOS COURTESY OF LAS PERLAS La Contente Oeste and La Contente Lower East Side boast more than 200 tequilas and mezcals with prices ranging from $7 to $38 per ounce, depending on the brand. tequilas, plus 20 mezcals in what Haglind fi gures is the largest offering in the state. A four-shelf wall looming behind the bar displays the tequilas with the expressions ascending in age, and most reachable only by ladder. Lubbock, TX-based Abuelo's, with 40-plus units in Texas, the Southeast, Midwest and Southwest, are dependent on national distribution for brands. Cristalino Clear Cristalino remains an unoffi cial subcategory of tequila, but the Tequila Regulatory Council is soon expected to settle the categorization and rules defi ning cristalino. For the most part, these are fi ltered reposado tequilas, or a blend of reposado, anejo and extra anejo. The resulting crystal-clear spirit is said to retain typical aromas and fl avors of an aged tequila combined with more agave notes. Numerous brands already exist, such as Don Julio 70 Añejo Claro, which is matured for 18 months in oak barrels and fi ltered multiple times through carbon to remove color, and Maestro Dobel Diamante. Rock N Roll Tequila, launched last year and packaged in guitar-shaped glass bottles, includes a cristalino expression. And Beam brand Hornitos last fall introduced its own cristalino iteration, which is expected to receive a big push to help defi ne the tequila subcategory. —JR The Appeal of Tequila Tequila cocktails at Las Perlas in Los Angeles include the Spiced Daisy (left), which is the Margarita with fresh-pressed jala- peños and cilantro, and the Poblano Escobar, a blend of pineapple and poblano peppers spiced with cumin and shaken with Vida mezcal.

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Cheers - Cheers April/May 2018