Summer 2019 is officially the summer carbonation took over the hearts and minds of the adult beverage industry. Natty Light, PBR, Four Loko, the internet favorite, White Claw, and practically any alcohol company with a pulse who can make and bottle boozy seltzer jumped on a train that continues to bubble out of control.
The next phase of the sparkling beverage boom: sparkling tequila.
LA-based Pure Azul just announced that it will be rolling out Azulana sparkling tequila this week in California, producing the first and only beverage on the market made with 100% blue agave tequila and sparkling soda.
Crafted in Jalisco, Mexico, it comes canned in three flavors: Original (tequila-flavored sparkling soda), Lime, and Pineapple Rosemary. Azulana sparkling tequila will be released in 12-oz. cans, containing 4.3% ABV with 145 calories.
In other words, the legit perfect drink for summer. You just may want to break out some sal y limón to fully enjoy it.
The three flavors are each unique and, not gonna lie, sound straight up tasty.
According to the company’s website, the “Original” flavor goes down smooth with a “lightly sweet” and “slightly tart” taste.
The “Pineapple Rosemary,” meanwhile, boasts a fruity, herbal flavor somewhat reminiscent of flowers, while the “Lime” option is zesty and tropical.
Sparkling tequila is the latest in a total takeover of the alcoholic beverage industry by sparkly, bubbly bebidas.
Clearly, Azulana looks to capitalize on two glaring beverage industry trends: the proliferation of sparkling hard seltzer and the continued success of tequila, which Azulana notes “continues to thrive.” In 2017, for example, the US saw an 8.5% increase in tequila liter sales over the previous year, according to the Distilled Spirits Council.
In a press release, Katie Pittman, Head of Sales and Marketing at Pure Azul notes, “Our goal is to help others understand that tequila isn’t just enjoyed during a wild night out – with Azulana, it can truly be enjoyed during all occasions – anywhere, anytime.”
It’s also good timing — tequila sales are up, up, up, across the US.
It may not seem like it to those of us who regularly order the Patron or Cuervo when having a party, but it’s true. Tequila sales are booming in the US. In 2017, for example, tequila sales were up 8.5% from the year before.
So if there was ever a time to enter the tequila business, it would be now. Make them coins.
The grand unveiling was August 22nd at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.
And, of course, it made its debut at a Rolling Stones concert. Because I guess tequila and Stones go together like…sal y limón?
But don’t worry if you didn’t make it to that concert. You won’t have to wait long. The sparking tequila beverage will be available at Bristol Farms supermarkets in Southern California from August 28th before expanding to other markets and regions from then.
While some seem to at least be open to the idea…
I mean, it all really depends on your feelings toward sparkling drinks to begin with. If you’re already a fan, then sparkling tequila isn’t too much of a stretch.
Mexicans are openly skeptical.
But let’s note, many on Latino Twitter basically said they were simultaneously fascinated and disgusted by the idea of sparkling tequila.
And a few people pointed out that summer is nearly over.
But if you have sparking tequila at your house…is summer ever really over?
Listen up tequila lovers – we’ve found your new HQ. And it’s time we spread the word.
Forget fancy vineyard buggy tours, or brewery visits. Mexico has really upped the game on boozy vacations.
Because, guys. GUYS. We’ve found a boutique hotel in Mexico that lets you sleep inside a massive tequila barrel.
No, but really.
How’s a weekend surrounded by an unlimited supply of tequila, sound?
Welcome to the Matices Hotel de Barricas, Mexico, where guests can eat, sleep, drink and dream tequila.
It’s the only hotel in the world that’s set on a tequila farm and distillery, and that offers bungalows shaped like barrels amongst agave (I mean… that is pretty niche).
And we’re obsessed.
I repeat: they’re set among vast fields of agave plants.
Not only will you be able to sleep in a barrel that mimics the ones they use to brew tequila, you’ll be able to IMMERSE yourself in the tequila-universe for however long you’re there for (how’s a lifetime sound?).
Here are all the things you never knew you needed to know about how to sleep in tequila barrels.
It’s set in the pueblo magico of… Tequila, Mexico.
It only seems good ‘n fair that this hotel is based smack bang in the heart of Tequila, Jalisco.
Spoiler alert – Tequila is the tequila capital of the world. It’s become something of a tourist hotspot for tequila fans hoping to learn more about this golden elixir. After all, agave plantations in the area have been churning out the good stuff since the 16th century!
And we can’t get over how beautiful the grounds are.
Open the large front-door of your personal barrel, and you’ll be greeted with rows upon rows of blue agave – the stuff tequila is brewed from.
Ok, so maybe it’s not a traditional ‘detox’ vacation, the hotel is located far from the bustle of the city.
The whole place is owned by a world-renowned distillery called Hacienda Tequilera La Cofradía. The hotel itself only opened in 2017, but word is spreading like wildfire!
And it’s easy to see why.
Four walls? Boring. Corners? Yawn.
The hotel offers 22 wooden barrel rooms with a range of suites – from the ‘Aged King’ and ‘Silver King’, to the ‘Extra-Aged King’.
Each barrel room can fit up to two guests and comes with a king-sized bed, rainshower air-conditioning, fridge and more. There are curved glass windows on the ceiling and some cute, kitsch wall paintings that give off some very Wild West vibes.
Sure, it’s no Ritz but hey – we’d pick unlimited tequila and rustic charm over fancy bar soap, most days.
The hotel also offers ordinary rooms for those travellers who, for some unfathomable reason, might not want to spend the night pretending to be your favorite liquor.
I mean, do you really love tequila if you don’t want to… be tequila?
I mean, it’s basically a boozy hobbit hole for adults.
Tequila is aged in a barrel and comes out better. Be the tequila.
Rest in here, come out e l e v a t e d.
The grounds are also pretty freaking cool.
That picture above is their La Taberna del Cofrade – a restaurant and bar that’s 4.5 meters (15 feet) deep underground!
Other cool spots around the hotel grounds include their The La Cofradía Tequila Site Museum that lays out their impressive achievements and history across 5 exhibition halls. There’s also an ‘Art in Fire Ceramic Factory’ where the ceramic structures and containers for tequila are made.
There’s also a very cool aging room where the tequila is stored in protective oak barrels until it’s ready for glugging.
And naturally, there’s a tequila shop where you can pick out some bottles to bring home to those who so foolishly didn’t join you on the best vacation ever.
You’ll also be able to get up-close and intimate with how the tequila is made.
After all, the hotel is connected to the La Cofradia tequila factory and is just a quick stroll away.
You’ll be able to stoke the fires of your tequila obsession with a fascinating guided tequila tour of the factory where you’ll learn all about tequila farming and distillation.
The distillery is said to use some pretty impressive modern distillation techniques. However, they use some of their same old recipes in order to make some of the world’s best tequila.
Wanna get hands-on? You can help out the farmers working in the field, design ceramic containers and tequila bottles, or even distil your own tequila from scratch!
Okay sure, but when’s the drinking start?
We thought you’d never ask. According to reviews, you’ll be greeted with a welcome drink on arrival – tequila shots, naturally.
You’ll also get the chance to do some free taste testing. We’d definitely recommend jumping every chance to drink from the source – Casa Cofradia is responsible for some pretty awesome tequilas.
They include the spicy Agave Loco, and Astral, a tequila repped by the former ‘Most Interesting Man in the World’, Jonathan Goldsmith.
Best of all – you can drink and go straight to bed. If emerging, slightly hungover from a barrel, doesn’t sound like fun we don’t know what does.
And minus the regrets. No regrets here.
Lastly – you’ll also be a stone’s throw from the lovely Tequila township.
There’s a handy free shuttle that goes between the hotel and Tequila town itself – conveniently rich in waterfalls, volcanoes and pre-hispanic ruins.
If you find some sober moments and are in the mood for adventure, feel free to jump on a horse, explore the area on a bike or dirt bike, or simply hike the rolling hills of this gorgeously old-school region of Mexico.
So go on – live your best life. And by that we mean, spend a night in an oversized barrel. You owe it to yourself.
I mean, just leaving this here…
Because if you haven’t slept in a Tequila barrel in a field of majestic agave plants, have you ever truly lived?