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Try a different, fun Valentine's Day with Hornitos tequila + recipes

Updated on February 8, 2017

Whether you're in a long-term relationship or hanging out with someone and you don't know yet what's what, maybe this is the Valentine's Day that you tone down the red, get rid of the tried and true, keep things lighthearted. This year, try some refreshing cocktails made with Hornitos Tequila! I was happy to have been given the opportunity to try it.

There are several expressions in the line, but if you have Plata and Black Barrel on hand, you can create drinks with a wide range of flavor profiles.

Plata is created entirely from the agave plant; Hornitos describes its taste as having "floral and herbal notes". I experienced a fresh, clean nose, with a touch of sweetgrass and corn silk. Its scent is brisk, not dark and heavy. Sipping it neat, the flavor has sweetness, yet is bracing. On swallowing, there's a pure agave pulp aspect, with no almond or clover, as in some other tequilas. Use this expression in brisk drinks where you want to avoid cloying sugar notes or heaviness. It has light to medium body and is perfectly clear in color.

Black Barrel is an Añejo (luxury aged) tequila that rests 4 months in charred oak barrels -- similar to how bourbon gets its flavors -- and then for 2 months in "toasted" barrels for smoky caramelization. Its nose is a bright, freshly cut Spring flower bouquet, with a hint of almond extract and vanilla baked goods at the end of the inhale. This deep honey colored tequila is smooth, yet deeply smoky with a touch of bite with the first sip. There's no burning alcohol sting in the mouth, but still, it's warming going down. I found it to be very food friendly with goose pate', rosemary crostini, sea-salt aged Cheddar. With food, it has a tiny touch of spice, but is very complimentary to savory flavors.

Here's an easy, yet impressive cocktail to liven things up on Valentine's Day that has enough gourmet touches to make you feel like a mixologist/"bar chef"/cocktail connoisseur.

Grilled Grapefruit Paloma

  • 2 parts Hornitos® Plata Tequila
  • 1 part fresh lime juice
  • ¾ part ginger sage syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura® bitters
  • Top with grapefruit beer (appx. 1 part)
  • Grapefruit
  • Sage sprigs

Preparation: Combine equal parts sugar and water with 1 ginger slice and 4 sage sprigs and bring to a boil to create ginger sage syrup. Allow the mixture to cool, combine all ingredients except grapefruit beer in a shaker with ice and shake vigorously. Strain the mixture into a highball glass filled with ice and top with grapefruit beer. Garnish with a grilled grapefruit slice.


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