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Definitions & History tequila (n): distilled, fermented agave hearts produced in Tequila, Jalisco, Mexico Must be fermented from Agave tequilana (Blue.

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Presentation on theme: "Definitions & History tequila (n): distilled, fermented agave hearts produced in Tequila, Jalisco, Mexico Must be fermented from Agave tequilana (Blue."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Definitions & History tequila (n): distilled, fermented agave hearts produced in Tequila, Jalisco, Mexico Must be fermented from Agave tequilana (Blue Weber agave) Tequila is an internationally protected name like cognac or champagne certifying origin & production method cp. Temequila from Temecula All tequila comes from 15 governmentt certified production facilities 100 distilleries produce 2000 brand names (cp. rum) After distillation, tequila is legally allowed to be exported in bulk and bottled by foreign companies Saves $ shipping, creates bottling jobs Must carry NOM: certification # of producer, distillery, year Timeline 1522 – Conquistadors invade Central America waging war on Aztecs & Incas. After their brandy runs out, they distill Aztec octli/pulque, making early tequila. c – Mass-produced distilled pulque centralizes around Tequila, Jalisco where the best agave grows – First tax on the new spirit! 1656 – City of Tequila officially founded. c – Tequila exported to the United States 2000s – TMA (tristeza y muerte de agave) causes large-scale agave shortage. Prices skyrocket and never really come down (cp. oil).

3 Geography Originally, tequila could only legally originate from Tequila, Jalisco Increased demand caused agave from surrounding states of Tamaulipas, Guanajuato, Michoacan & Nayarit to be allowed. Jalisco Derived from Aztec word for sandy surface Mountainous region with many valleys Tequila volcano erupted 200,000 years ago, leaving bed of volcanic soil now covered by sand. Sub-tropical climate 2 main regions Area around Tequila La Tierra Negra volcanic soil Agave matures in ~ 7 years Los Altos de Jalisco La Tierra Roja iron-rich soil Agave matures in 8-12 years

4 Production & Styles Agave Cultivation Wild agave is a succulent plant that can grow 8 feet tall and can live up to 50 years. It reproduces by growing a shoot with flowers on the end up to 20 feet high. The flowers are then pollinated by a native bat, fertilizing thousands of seeds. The plant then dies. Tequila Production Commercial agave starts to grow its shoot after 5 years. The shoot is removed causing the heart or piña to grow larger, increasing the amount of sugar available for fermentation. Jimadores harvest the piña by hand. If harvested too soon, not enough sugar has been produced. If too late, the sugars have already been used to grow the shoot. Piñas are crushed to release the musto (cp. grape must) which is then fermented in oak or stainless steel and distilled 2-3 times. Tequila is then aged in oak (or not) Styles Mixtos – 51% agave sugar by law; remaining 49% is made up of cheap glucose & fructose from any source. Puro de agave – made from 100% agave sugars Blanco / Plata – white / silver Aged 0-2 months Joven – young Blended Blanco with Reposado or Añejo Reposado – rested Aged 2-12 months in oak Large oak barrels used (up to 20,000L) Añejo – mature, aged Aged 1-3 years in oak Small oak barrels used (up to 600L) Extra Añejo Aged more than 3 years in oak New designation as of 2006


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