If you love tequila and also love pairing your alcohol with the perfect foods to go along with it, then you’re in the right place. When you think of pairing food and alcohol together, the first thought you may come up with is wine—and this is definitely a great place to get started. However, wine certainly isn’t the only liquor that pairs well with certain meals, and tequila is a surprising option you may want to try pairing as well. In this article, we’ll show you some of our favorite tequila and food pairings to help move you beyond the world of cheap margaritas and burritos and into the realm of higher-class food pairings instead.
Silver tequila is the most common type, and is also called white or blanco tequila under some labels. This type of tequila is light, drinkable, and often used in cocktails, margaritas, and shots. However, it can also be enjoyed as a sipping tequila, especially if you choose a higher-quality product with more attention given to the flavors and complexities that go into each bottle.
Since this is a lighter drink, think of it like you would a white wine. Pair it with poultry or seafood for best results. You can also use this tequila in your cocktails, but if you do this, remember to choose foods that go along well with the flavors in your cocktails, too. This is also an excellent tequila choice when you’re serving vegan or vegetarian dishes, since vegetables pair nicely with the lighter, more mellow flavors going on in this variety.
Gold tequila is usually a low-end product that is only suitable for use in shots and margaritas. This is the type of tequila most people think of when they remember getting drunk at college parties, and for this reason, it’s not often recommended for pairing with very upscale meals or classy foods. This type of tequila has a powerful flavor and tends to taste more like alcohol than anything else.
However, because of this strong flavor, it does go nicely with spicy or greasy foods. If you’re looking for the right tequila to drink as a shot along with tacos, then gold tequila is the right choice for you. Just remember that this is more a party pairing than anything else, and it might not be ideal for serving to your boss at a dressy dinner event.
Reposado tequila is the most highly-recommended for those who are looking to dive into the world of sipping tequilas. If you’re looking to make the change from shots to sips, by all means, be sure to pick up a bottle of Reposado tequila to help you make this happen. This tequila is aged in oak barrels for two to eleven months and therefore has a chance to pick up some of the subtleties of the oak during this process. Some compare this tequila to gin or whiskey because of its stronger and bolder flavor as well as its amber color.
This type of tequila also pairs nicely with a wide variety of different foods thanks to its richer and more complex flavor profile than some of the others on our list. Consider what you might pair with a Merlot or another dry red wine; these are often good choices for pairing with a Reposado tequila as well. Try spicy food, smoked meat, and pork when you’re looking for the perfect pairing option for Reposado. Don’t be afraid to bring out this tequila at a cookout or a barbecue event.
Anejo tequila is aged for more than eleven months and up to two and a half years in oak barrels. Because of this longer aging process, this tequila has an even sharper, bolder flavor than Reposado and is darker in color as well.
This type of tequila tends to taste like caramel and dark chocolate as well as oak and smoky flavors, so it pairs especially well with red meat like steak. It can also be used for pairing with rich chocolate desserts and is ideal for use along with mushrooms as well. Anything with a rich and bold flavor can hold up nicely to pairing with Anejo tequila.
Extra Anejo Tequila
Extra Anejo tequila is also aged in oak barrels, but it’s kept in the barrels for at least three years before bottling. It develops a very rich, powerful flavor with a smooth finish, and it’s often the most expensive type of tequila available under any label.
If you’re lucky enough to have the chance to try one of these very high-end tequilas, you should do yourself a favor and just enjoy the tequila on its own. Although it can be paired with chocolate or red meat like Anejo tequila, it’s best served by itself.
Mezcal can be considered tequila’s cousin, but it has a different flavor profile than tequila. This alcoholic beverage tends to have a smokier, earthier taste than tequila and is, therefore, better suited for different types of food pairings than tequila is.
Mezcal tastes great when served along with mushrooms and cheese, so it’s a surprisingly nice complement to Italian dishes like risotto. Try it with roasted vegetables as well to help bring out the smoky flavor, or stick to heartier meals and serve it along with almost any type of cheese. The older the cheese, the better it’s sure to taste along with Mezcal.
Now that you’ve learned a little bit more about how to pair tequila and food, you’re ready to pick the right combination for your needs and get started serving right away. The next time you host a family gathering or a party for your friends, coworkers, or relatives, you’ll be ready to provide the perfect sipping tequila with the right food pairing to go along with it. Although it may take a little planning and prep work to make this happen, the end result is sure to be a memorable experience.