Category Archives: Tequila

An Evening of Agave at Stock & Barrel

A few weeks ago, Stock & Barrel Kitchen Americana in Bishop Arts District hosted its first spirited dinner with Don Julio, aptly named An Evening of Agave. I happily attended, albeit slightly worse for the wear since I had just returned from my first ever Tales of the Cocktail experience a few days prior, but hey … tequila. ‘Nuff said. The dinner was an intimate affair offering only 15 seats, at the bar and involved not only a four-course dinner paired with cocktails highlighting the Don Julio line of tequilas, but also an interactive educational experience led by none other than Senior Don Julio brand ambassador, the ever delightful and engaging Jorge Raptis.

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The dinner experience opened with introductions from Stock & Barrel Chef/owner Jon Stevens and Bar Manager Jeremy Koeninger before they gave Jorge the floor to tell us more about the history behind Don Julio as well as the thoughtful process that turned agave into the tequila that was before us. He spoke about the philosophy behind Don Julio that drives the manner in which they cultivate, harvest, and cook the agave, as well as distill, bottle, and age the tequila, and why production volume should never compromise the level of product quality.

The ambiance of the event was very casual and interactive, so the guests were encouraged to ask questions and have an open dialogue about the food and cocktail courses, as well as the Don Julio tequila itself. There were tasters of different tequilas for each guest, in addition to the cocktail pairings, so needless to say (but I’m going to say it anyway), our intimate group of bar guests became very fast friends.

 

Now of course, while the tequila was very smooth and enjoyable, Chef Jon Stevens was not about to let it overshadow the food courses. He made this clear by simply bringing out the first course: Wild Salmon Tartare with avocado cream, grapefruit segments, Yukon potato crisp, and lemon verbena. It was a bright flavor punch to my palate, tempered very well by the subtle fattiness of the salmon. The course was complemented by Jeremy’s cocktail creation dubbed Electric Love, which featured Don Julio Blanco, verbena, and Cocchi Americano, an Italian aperitif wine. The Blanco’s crisp, citrusy flavor paired with the tartare dish and its accouterments beautifully.

Chef Stevens’ second course (my favorite of the meal, without a doubt) was Mediterranean Octopus Carpaccio with tangerine, radish, and honey pimento. The thinly sliced octopus had hints of smoky char that I loved, but by its very nature of being carpaccio, it was an ethereal deliciousness that I kept chasing. The next thing I knew, I had devoured my second course, wishing I could have a second helping, maybe even a third. My friend Paige expressed a similar sentiment, with a wistful face when she found her plate empty as well.

Mediterranean Octopus Carpaccio

The cocktail pairing for the octopus course was an Ancho Bravo, made with Don Julio Reposado, demerara syrup, and Ancho Reyes. The Reposado coupled with the demerara brought a slightly cinnamon-y warmth that lent itself well with the smoky, meaty octopus, and the Ancho Reyes provided a welcome spicy kick. It was pretty boozy, so I took my time to sip and savor it.

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We bounced back pretty well though when the third course arrived: Braised Berkshire Pork Belly with creamy Brussels sprouts and preserved cherries. Chef Stevens had prepared us well by having the first two courses whet our palates, leading us to this wholly satisfying and deliciously unctuous pork belly dish. The creamy Brussels and dark berry tartness of the cherries ensured that the dish would satiate our taste buds without being too heavy.

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The third course paired with The Oleroso Agave, a cocktail with Don Julio Añejo, Oleroso sherry, and Luxardo syrup served up in a coupe glass. It was a spirit-forward concoction that accentuated the savory notes of the pork belly, and the sherry played well with the preserved cherry sauce. I especially enjoyed this pairing as Añejo is typically my favorite tequila expression, with the extra time the tequila spends aging in barrels.  The flavor comes out with honey and caramel notes that I just love.

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Our fourth and final course was the Butterscotch Pot de Creme, served with vanilla cream, sourdough crisp, and sea salt. This dreamy and delectable dish was served with a taster of Don Julio 1942. The butterscotch pot de creme was silky and light, and the sprinkle of sea salt elevated the dessert to another level of deliciousness. The sourdough crisp offered a welcome crunchy texture to the dinner’s velvety finale, and the deeply caramel and chocolate notes of the Don Julio 1942 brought this particular Night of Agave to a definitively beautiful conclusion.

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Based on the overwhelmingly positive feedback from guests after the Don Julio dinner, Stock & Barrel hopes to keep the spirited dinner series going every other month, with each one featuring a unique spirit.  For more information, check out stockandbarreldallas.com or follow Chef Stevens (@stockbarreltx) and Jeremy Koeninger (@jeremykoeninger) on Instagram for any event announcements and updates.

STOCK & BARREL
stockandbarreldallas.com
316 W. Davis St. (Dallas)
(214)888-0150

#DrinkingwithSusie: Jaclyn Mittman

While it’s hot outside, it’s really tough to still look cool … and even harder to keep your cool when entertaining.  Luckily, my friend Jaclyn Mittman is giving me some outdoor entertaining pointers for my summer parties.  Her biggest advice: texture.

We got together for a quick tablescape lesson and some tequila cocktails … because, summer.  Scroll to see what we got into.

What inspired your tablescape?
Rustic summer. I love the look of the distressed wood with modern, elegant pieces like gold flatware and matte black dinnerware. The white peonies and eucalyptus offered even more texture and elevated the entire table without having to add a lot of color. I tend to stick with neutrals so this tablescape reflected my design style perfectly.

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Where can we get this setup … like STAT?
Target has the best, affordable pieces for entertaining!  And the best part is it’s so reasonably priced that you can have multiple sets/motifs.

Plates – Threshold™ Large, $5.99; Small, $5.99
Table Runner – Threshold™ Natural Ramie Table Runner, $22.99
Flatware – Threshold™ Izon Flatware Set, $19.99 (5-pc set)
Glasses – Crate & Barrel Dizzy Double Old Fashioned, $1.95

Candles – Target
Flowers – Trader Joe’s white peonies, eucalyptus, and assorted leaves, $2.99 – $6.99

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What is your best advice for entertaining?
Texture! Add texture to the table by adding in layers with a table runner, napkins, or florals and plants. Also alcohol. Alcohol is a must when entertaining.

Music can also completely set the tone and mood for any party. When entertaining, I stick with Spotify for their pre-made playlists based on mood or the type of party you’re throwing. I know I can let it play and not have to worry about it the rest of the time. Also, a great Bluetooth speaker is the way to go. I love the JBL Xtreme Splashproof Wireless Speaker for parties. (NOTE FROM SUSIE: feel free to use my boozy playlist!)

Do you have any special tips or tricks for summer entertaining?
Make sure you’re wearing something breezy, because the host is always running around. Also, make sure you’re providing guests with water, shade, and (if possible) fans! (And did I mention alcohol?)

Since it’s warm outside, we obviously needed something to cool us off.  Enter: tequila cocktails.  We went for something that was light but potent–The Resting Garden Margarita.  Plenty of tequila and some fresh juice keeps this recipe light and drinkable and the grilled mango garnish makes it gorgeous to boot.

The Resting Garden Margarita
1 3/4 oz Roca Patrón Silver
1/2 oz Patrón Citronge Mango
1 oz fresh lemon juice
3/4 oz agave syrup
6 sage leaves (plus more for garnish)
Pinch of salt
Grilled mango slices

Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake with ice to chill. “Double strain” the drink by pouring it through a fine mesh strainer into an ice-filled old fashioned glass. Garnish with sage leaves and a grilled mango slice.

We went with Roca Patrón Silver as this recipe doesn’t have much going on … so you can taste the quality of the tequila.  (Because good liquor shouldn’t be covered up, y’all.)  If you haven’t tried Roca Patrón Silver, it has notes of black pepper, a citrus nose, and a smooth taste.

Glasses – Crate & Barrel Dizzy Double Old Fashioned, $1.95
Mini Clothespins
 – Home Depot, $2.98 (pack of 50)
Juicer – Gift from Patrón (similar: Cocktail Kingdom Mexican Beehive Juicer, $16.95)

Strainer – Crate & Barrel Tea Strainer, $4.95
Cocktail Shaker – Sur La Table Boston Shaker, $25

What made you start your blog, JaclynMittman.com?
I originally started my blog as a place to share my beauty findings and to be able to review makeup products I used regularly.  As it turns out … people wanted to read it. It has turned into beauty, fashion, lifestyle, and more!

What is your go-to sunscreen this summer?
I swear by Aesop’s Avail Body Lotion with Sunscreen. It doesn’t feel heavy like most sunscreens and it easily absorbs and doesn’t leave a white cast on your skin. It also smells incredible!

Any other awesome summer beauty items we all need?
Setting sprays and facial mists are a must in the summer. I often use both! My favorite setting spray to lock in my makeup for the day is Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray and my newest facial mist obsession is the Caudalíe Beauty Elixir for its skin calming effects … and it’s refreshing!

Kind of loving your outfit … it’s perfect for summer.  Where can we get it?
TopChoies Black Off Shoulder Half Sleeve Blouse in black, $11.90
ShortsMadewell San Diego Cover-Up Shorts in strokedash, $39.50 $29.99
HeelsSteve Madden Christey Heel in black suede, $109.95


JACLYN MITTMAN

JaclynMittman.com (formerly Pretty Petals)
Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube | Pinterest

Pictures by Rico DeLeon.

Sauza’s #MyKindofCinco

I like to entertain … like … a lot.  The worst part, though, is being forced to be tied to the bar so you can make everyone drinks or to keep it tidy when the one messy friend inevitably spills all the things.  (Dammit, Linda.)  Say “adios” to playing babysitter to the bar and batch out a cocktail (or three) for your Cinco de Mayo fiesta.

For Cinco de Mayo, the easiest thing to batch out is, of course, margaritas.  And (hold on to your sombrero), the US imported 12.3 million cases (yes, M-M-M-M-M-million) of tequila in 2014 … and Texas is apparently one of the top 10 tequila consuming states in the US.  So yeah, a drink with tequila is a slam dunk.

This Cinco de Mayo, I’ll be visiting family in Pennsylvania to celebrate my grandmother’s 90th birthday.  Luckily, on her last visit to Dallas, my mom and I introduced her to margaritas … and she loved them.  Needless to say, once I land in the Keystone State, I’ll be swinging by a liquor store to pick up the makings of this remixed margarita just for her.

So, why Sauza?  It’s made with 100% blue agave in Jalisco, Mexico the same way it has been made since 1873.  The agave is put into production within 48 hours which gives the tequila a crisp flavor.

Perfect Pear Margarita (serves 8)
2 cups Sauza® Signature Blue Silver Tequila
1/2 cup lemon Juice
1/2 cup lime juice
1 cup simple syrup
1 cup pear syrup
Rosemary sprigs

Mix all ingredients in an ice-filled pitcher. Serve in margarita glasses garnished with a rosemary sprig and lime wheel.  (Ignore the color … because it’s delicious!)

 

PEAR SYRUP
1 cup pear purée
1⁄4 cup Sugar in the Raw
1⁄2 tablespoon fresh ginger, chopped
1 cinnamon stick
1 pinch grated nutmeg

In a medium saucepan, combine all ingredients over medium heat and stir until sugar dissolves fully.  Reduce to low and simmer for 10 minutes.  (The syrup will thicken-up slightly.)  Strain and store in an airtight container in a refrigerator for up to two weeks.

I was given the chance to participate in this campaign and was sent items from Sauza to promote.

Product Review: Hornitos Spiced Honey Tequila

My first thought before even opening this bottle … will this be some magic elixir or will it be evil sugar syrup?

The war to slowly trick up everything simple and good with extra flavors has been won. The traditionalist lost. First, they took our vodka to a chemical flavor factory. Next they added honey to our whiskey. Now, you can browse every single section of a liquor store and find combinations of flavors, chemicals and booze that you could argue God either never intended to exist or that he simply waited to give us the know-how to make apple-flavored everything. Ok, this sounds overly negative – and you’re right, because some of this stuff is really good. It’s just that once you spend a winter in New England burning through flavored whiskey/bourbon praying for snow to melt, you get really skeptical of everything.

So, when I had a chance to review Hornitos Spiced Honey, I was anxious. This is a tequila I really like, and the thought of it turning into a sugar fest with a kick was almost depressing to me. Also, flavored tequila just doesn’t sound right, but I fought through that by saying I used to feel the same way about whiskey. I decided to try it neat, on the rocks, and then in whatever cocktail/mixer felt right after I got the taste and made notes as I went.

When I opened the bottle, the honey scent was strong and the agave smell felt really dialed back. I had my wife (a non-tequila drinker) take a sniff … she told me she still thought it was strong, so maybe it’s a preference thing. I took a sip and was surprised it was close to a good spiced rum than anything else.

The vanilla and spice were well balanced and the tequila taste gradually came through after a few more sips. This was very easy to drink and I could see it easily becoming part of my rotation as a warm up drink for the evening or a shot that wasn’t hard to take down. It gets better as it opens up, but the one thing that quickly became apparent is that it wouldn’t fit my tastes for a traditional tequila recipe since so many of those drinks are traditionally sweet to begin with.

Luckily, I live in New England and its fall, so people are pushing apples everywhere. In Texas terms, think of that week hatch chiles show up or if someone made bluebonnets edible. After some recent success with Makers and cider, I decided to see how the tequila would mix with it. Despite the obvious sweetness, this was a solid nightcap and it left with a list of future ideas (and there are also several recipes on the website focused on mixers like tea and lemonade as well.)

Hornitos Spiced Honey is available almost everywhere with a retail price of $19.99 per 750ml bottle. If you’re looking for a change of pace from your regular tequila and enjoy the flavor of spiced rum and similar spirits, I’d definitely recommend picking up a bottle.



Workin’ Hard
2 parts Hornitos® Plata Tequila
½ part Agave Nectar
1 part Lime Juice
2 parts Coconut Water
3 Dashes Angostura® Bitters
Lime Peel

Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice, shake vigorously and strain over fresh ice. Garnish with a lime peel.

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1 ¼ parts Hornitos® Black Barrel® Tequila
¼ part Agave
½ part Lemon Juice
Lemon Wedge

Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice, shake vigorously and strain over fresh ice. Garnish with a lemon wedge.

The Work Horse1 ½ parts Hornitos® Plata Tequila
4 parts Mexican Lager
⅓ part Lime Juice
⅓ part Simple Syrup
1 slice Jalapeño
Salt Rim

Muddle jalapeño in a glass with a salted rim, combine remainder of ingredients except Mexican lager in a shaker, shake vigorously, strain over fresh ice and add Mexican lager.

Primo’s: New Ownership, Old Favorites

Primo’s is a Dallas institution in it’s own right. It would be harder to find a cheesier enchilada or a frostier happy hour margarita than the familiar offerings at this beloved industry favorite.

In case you missed it, Primo’s closed its doors in 2013 and reopened them again in early 2015 under new ownership. The new owners attempted to update Primo’s tried and true menu, much to the chagrin of many once-loyal fans. It wasn’t working. I have wonderful news for Primo’s loyalists and Tex Mex enthusiasts alike: Primo’s is, once again, under new ownership; and this time, new owners Dirk and Mark Kelcher (of Ron’s Place and now Cedar’s Social) intend to restore Primo’s to its former glory. Primo’s fans can expect to see the majority of the original menu, with a few thoughtful additions  that don’t take away from what Primo’s should be.

Some welcomed additions to Primo’s menu include a variety of new specialty cocktails, as well as a collection of aptly dangerous tequila flights. While Primo’s Tex Mex menu is full of old favorites, their re-vamped cocktail menu is creative and playful- in a good way. If you’re feeling indecisive, throw caution to the wind and consider allowing  the bartender to craft you an off-menu libation based on your personal preferences. I was lucky enough to sample several off-menu creations, such as the delightfully zippy Basil Jalapeño Margarita and the cleverly crafted Moscow-Rita, prepared with ginger beer in place of triple sec. While all of the specialty cocktails I sampled were interesting and delicious, I would be remiss not to remind everyone how comforting and satisfying Primo’s house marg so happens to be. Not too sweet, not too tart, and nice and smooth; simple and darn near perfect.

I can happily confirm the Kelchers are delivering on their promise to stay true to Primo’s old school Tex Mex roots. The chips are crispy and hot, the salsa spicy, the queso decadently thick and cheesy, and the guac is fresh and chunky. Primo’s beef tacos cause grease to dribble down your chin in the best way possible. Meanwhile, the chicken tacos are quite possibly the ultimate soul-warming comfort food … apart from, of course, the enchiladas. Fajitas are served sizzling, decorated with sexy little char marks that cause one to salivate in anticipation.

Ongoing specials include Margarita Tuesdays, including $3 margs and $7 taco plates, along with Happy Hour Monday-Friday, 3:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m., including $3 domestic drafts, house wines, house margs, and well. $7.99 lunch specials are available Monday-Friday from 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.


Primo’s Tex Mex Grille
www.PrimosTexMex.com
Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
1400 Hi Line Drive, Suite 116 (Design District)
(214) 390-7671

Hours of Operation:
Sunday- Monday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Tuesday- Saturday 11 a.m. to 2 a.m.

#SauzaPitcherPics & Recipes

Let’s be real for just a second: What even, is the point of ordering a beautiful cocktail if you don’t plan on giving said libation its 15 minutes of fame on social media? My fiancée knows the drill now. (One aspect in which I have him totally trained.) Whenever we order cocktails at a bar or restaurant, he dutifully slides his glass towards me without taking a sip, so I can capture his drink in its pure, unadulterated state prior to his first sip.

Sauza Tequila has picked up on the fact that folks enjoy showing off their beverages; in response, they launched a fun campaign to get tequila fans snapping and posting away on Instagram (and in the blogosphere): the Sauza Pitcher Perfect Picture project!

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According to Sauza, margaritas are the most popular cocktail to order in pitcher form; I think we can all agree, there’s just something so dang alluring about an icy pitcher of that limey goodness. (Unless you are Susie, but we won’t go there.) Margaritas also happen to be the most frequently “shared” drink on social media. (I just want to point out, someone gets paid to sit around and figure this stuff out. Where can I sign up for this job?)

Michelle Yam, travel, food and lifestyle photographer, paired up with Sauza to share some tips on the fine art of booztography. This is serious business, y’all.

  • Natural light goes a long way in lending appeal to cocktail photos, so take full advantage of sunshiny days, whether it’s on a patio or indoors with sun streaming in through the window.
  • Playing with focus can be a great way to set up an interesting shot. Try playing with the tilt-shift function on the Instagram toolbar in order to blur out surroundings with ease.
  • Pump up the contrast and saturation to enhance texture and drama in your shot. (pun lightly intended)
  • Shadow-jockeying is a thing, especially if you are shooting outdoors. Be mindful of where shadows are being cast prior to snapping away.
  • Play the angles. Glassware can be tricky to photograph from a straight-on view. Sometimes, an aerial shot, or shooting from an angle, results in a much more attractive snap.

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The next time you prepare a refreshing pitcher of margaritas at home, here are some tips from Bobby Gleason, master mixologist at Beam Suntory, to get your cover girl ready for her close-up.

  • Rimmed glasses– or even pitchers- take your photos to the next level. Coarse, kosher salt works best for a salt rim. Try an alternative rim, such as Tjin Spice or smoked salt for added flavor and visual interest.
  • Kick up the heat and the color with some fresh muddle jalapeño; reserve a slice of red or green pepper for the rim.
  • Opt for solid or hollow ice cubes as opposed to crushed or shaved ice; it photographs better.
  • Experiment with fresh herbs for a color accent.
  • And by all means, don’t forget the requisite wedge or slice of lime!

Preparing a pitcher of margs capable of evoking tequila envy on Insta is only half the battle though, right? Thankfully, Sauza has shared three Pitcher Perfect recipes that are perfectly refreshing for summertime- and they are easy to put together. No blender required!

Sauza Cucumber Chili Rita
2 cups Sauza Cucumber Chili Tequila
1 cup DeKuyper Triple Sec Liqueur
2 cups fresh lemon sour
Juice of 6 whole limes
Slices of limes for garnish (optional)

Add ingredients to an ice-filled pitcher. Add sliced limes and stir.
Serves 8


Sauza-Rita
1 can Sauza Signature Blue Reposado Tequila
1 bottle light beer
1 can frozen limeade
1 can water

Pour limeade and beer into pitcher with ice. Fill limeade can with Sauza Blue Reposado and pour into pitcher. Finally, add a can of water. Stir.
Serves 9


Sauza Strawberry Margarita
1 ½ cups Sauza Signature Blue Silver Tequila
½ cup DeKuyper Triple Sec Liqueur
1 cup Pucker Strawberry Schnapps
3 cups sour mix
Sliced strawberries (optional)

Add ingredients to an ice-filled pitcher. Add sliced strawberries. Stir.
Serves 8 

For inspiration, check out some of Instagram’s Pitcher Perfect offerings, by searching for the hashtag, #SauzaPitcherPics.

www.SauzaTequila.com
Twitter: @Sauza
Facebook: @SauzaTequila
Instagram: @SauzaTequila
Pinterest: @SauzaTequila
YouTube: SauzaTequila

***Sauza Tequila graciously provided me with a fun, booze-filled care package in order to assist me in the process of crafting my own #pitcherperfectpicture.***

Event Recap: Herradura Tequila Dinner at Mesero

The best place to be on July 23rd, the day before National Tequila Day, was in the upstairs private room at Mesero by Mico Rodriguez, located on Henderson Avenue. Guests at this private event donated $1,000 per couple to the Pat & Emmitt Smith Charities to attend.

The night started with the Russ Hewitt Trio playing music while Tequila Herradura cocktails and brisket nachos, chicken flautas, and shrimp ceviche were passed to the hungry attendees.

Once the guests were called to be seated, Emmitt Smith was introduced to welcome everyone and speak briefly about his wife’s and his charity and what the evening had in store.

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“Thank you guys for supporting Pat and Emmitt Smith Charities,” Smith said, addressing the intimate crowd before the dinner got underway. “The work that we do couldn’t get done without the help and support of people like yourselves. Tonight is an opportunity for everyone here to get to understand and learn about the Herradura culture.”

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Smith continued to explain his experience traveling to Guadalajara and learn the entire process of how Herradura makes the tequila, and how “it is one the cleanest tequilas out there, and that makes the taste itself very pure.”

 

After the introduction, guests were guided through the dinner and tastings by global brand ambassador for Tequila Herradura, Ruben Aceves.

 

He began the dinner explaining the concept of a tequila dinner. “We are going to have dinner like we do in Mexico–where we drink tequila before dinner, with dinner and after dinner with desert.”

Before the salad course, Jose Cortes, a third-generation Jimador demonstrated the harvest of an agave plant while Aceves explained the process.

Each course consisted of a tequila margarita pairing that included Herradura Tequila–Silver, Reposado, Ultra or Selección Suprema.

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As each tequila was presented with its course and Aceves described their qualities and how each was made.

The Cazera Salad was served with the Meserita cocktail, made with Herradura Silver, Cointreau and citrus.

The second course sampled a cheese tomatillo enchilada, pollo brasa with chipotle cheddar grits and the Mico “12” a la Mexicana. The La Dona cocktail (Herredura Reposado, Cointreau and citrus) complemented this course.

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The Pastel Cinco Leches was the final delicacy of the evening. It was paired with the El Santo (frozen Micorita made with Herradura Silver, house Sangria and Herradura Ultra). Herradura Ultra is the most recent addition to the Tequila Herradura family. It is an traditional Añejo tequila blended with premium Añejo tequila that creates a very smooth, subtly sweet tequila.

To cap off the evening, guests sampled the Extra Añejo, Selleción Suprema de Herradura, which is Tequila Herredura’s highest quality tequila.

This event raised $25,000 for the Pat & Emmitt Smith Charities, which provide educational opportunities and experiences to underserved children.  If you’d like to donate or learn more, visit www.emmittsmith.com.

If you want to sample these cocktails yourself, you can visit Mesero and experience your own tequila dinner!

Cantina Laredo Tequila Dinner Series ft. Herradura

Whether it is warranted or not, very few spirits get the same bad wrap that poor old tequila does. Most of us know exactly why, too. Flashback to college … ahh, the good ole college days. To make a long (and messy) story short, there was usually tequila involved. Unfortunately, my buddies and I didn’t always go for the good stuff … we were drinking the bargain basement stuff like Montezuma and whatever else we could get our hands on (cheaply). Do I even need to go on and say that many a night ended badly? More than once, we learned the hard way that drinking the cheap stuff never was a good idea.

Good thing those days are over.

I was fortunate to be invited to one of Cantina Laredo’s new high-end tequila dinners via Susie. This 4-course dinner was at the Addison location and featured drink pairings that featured Tequila Herradura. Founded in 1870 in Amatitán, Jalisco, the brand has consistently produced high quality tequilas from the beginning. They insist on using traditional methods and 100% agave. The brand controls 30% of the tequila market in Mexico … so they must be doing something right.

There were three glasses of tequila to welcome us at our place settings. (That’s the way to start things off on the right foot!) We took things slow and sipped these over the course of the dinner, as one should with fine tequilas. Our first course was a Sope de Brisket, a delicious and tender beef brisket served in a flaky pie-like crust. The appetizer was accompanied by a Paloma cocktail. This was a simple but refreshing combination of Herradura Blanco tequila and Fresca soda. (OMG how I’ve missed Fresca!)

This was followed by a Mango Salad. While I am not normally a fan of fruit in salads, I actually didn’t mind this. The mango melded well with the dressing and queso fresco, and the jicama added in a nice crunch. It was fresh, light and colorful.  The Santiago Cocktail comprised of Herradura Blanco shaken with Midori, grapefruit juice, grenadine and sweet and sour mix. It was enjoyed by others, but it was simply too sweet for my taste.

We had a choice between two main dishes … the Seabass Oscar with Chili de Arbol Sauce was excellent. The fish was perfectly cooked–tender, flaky and not overdone–and the sauce that accompanied it was the perfect mixture of spicy and sweet. This was definitely the better of the two options, but you couldn’t have gone wrong with the filet either.  Here we enjoyed a classic Margarita with Herradura’s Reposado Tequila. You can’t beat a margarita made with top-shelf tequila, that’s all I will say… the Dia y Noche Flan was a nice finale to the dinner and was served with an Old 43 Cocktail. The Old 43 is a dangerously delicious mix of Añejo Tequila, Licor 43, Kahlua, half & half and fresh brewed coffee topped with whipped cream and a cherry.  An awesome alcoholic, cinnamon-y hot chocolate drink.

 

This was the first of Cantina Laredo’s series of tequila dinners in the the DFW area.  Check out  the the list of the locations and brands of tequila they will feature in the coming weeks. For $49.99 per person, these dinners are an excellent deal. (I think that just the assortment of tequila and cocktails alone are worth that price!) Add in the delicious food and you definitely get more than your money’s worth. If you missed the Addison event, I’ll include the recipes for Herradura tequila-based cocktails for a Mexican night of your own.

City Tequila Date Phone
Addison Herradurra 5/21/2015 (972) 458-0962
Grapevine Don Julio 5/23/2015 (817) 358-0505
Fort Worth Cabo Wabo 5/29/2015 (817) 810-0773
Lewisville Gran Centenario 6/4/2015 (972) 315-8100
Frisco Herradura 6/4/2015 (214) 618-9860
Dallas Casa Noble 6/13/2015 (214) 265-1610

Thank you to Chef/Manager Rambo Saucedo for treating us to this great dinner.

Cantina Laredo – Addison
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4546 Beltline Road
Addison, Texas 7544
(972) 458-0962

 

Tequila Recipes

Paloma
Ice glass, add:
1½ oz. Herradura Blanco Tequila
Garnish: grapefruit slice

Mix all ingredients. Top with Fresca.

Santiago
1½ oz. Herradura Blanco Tequila
½ oz. Midori
1 oz. Fresh Grapefruit Juice
1 oz. Grenadine
½ oz. Sweet & Sour Mix
Garnish: Grapefruit Slice

Shake with ice until chilled and strain into Martini Glass

Classic Margarita
1½ oz. Herradura Reposado Tequila
½ oz. Grand Marnier
1 oz. Fresh Lime Juice
1 oz. Fresh Orange Juice
½ oz. Simple Syrup
Garnish: Lime  Wheel

Shake with ice until chilled and strain into salt rimmed Martini Glass

Old 43
1 oz. Herradura Añejo Tequila
½ oz. Licor 43
½ oz. Kahlua
½ oz.Half & Half
Garnish: Whipped topping, Cherry

Combine ingredients in Irish Coffee mug. Fill with fresh, hot coffee to ½ from rim.