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National Tequila Day

Updated on June 9, 2011

National Tequila Day

In the United States, July 24 is National Tequila Day.

According to Wikipedia, tequila was invented during the 16th century in Mexico by the conquistadors.  The Aztecs had long made a fermented drink called pulque from the maguey plant (there are stone carvings from 200 AD which are believed to depict pulque).  The discovery of tequila came when the conquistadors ran out of brandy and tried to make a liquor based on the same plant.  Instead of pulque, they came up with tequila.  They made the tequila from the sap of the blue agave.

The name of "tequila" comes from the name of a village that was very close to where drink was discovered.  The town itself did not itself become established until 1656 but the name and association stuck.

Tequila is not fermented from a cactus.  Cactus are not related to agaves.  There is usually no worm in tequila.  The worm is found in some mezcal and this tradition was only begun in the 1940s as a marketing ploy.  Mezcals are related to tequila.  Historically, tequila was known as mezcal wine or mezcal brandy.  Today, there are considered distinct.  Tequila comes from the Jalisco State in Mexico.  Mezcal often comes from the Oaxaca.

Tequila first became mass produced in Guadalajara, Mexico in the early 1800s by Don Pedro Sanchez de Tagle, the Marquis of Altamira.  It was first exported to the United States in 1884 by Don Cenobio Sauza, Municiple President of the Village of Tequila.

His grandon, Don Francisco Javier established the tradition that genuine tequila can only come from the State of Jalisco in Mexico.  He is famous for saying "there cannot be tequila where there are no agaves."

There are five categories of tequila:

  • Blanco ("white"): white and aged less than two months in oak barrels
  • Joven ("young"):  unaged blended with other tequilas and may have a caramel coloring.
  • Reposado ("rested"): aged at least two months but less than a year in oak barrels
  • Añejo ("aged"): aged a minimum of one year but less t han 3 years in oak barrels
  • Extra Añejo ("extra aged"): aged a minimum of threes year in oak barrels

So, if it's July 24 when you read this, Happy National Tequila Day!

Pee Wee Herman: Tequila!


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    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 7 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      I can't really drink it unless it's in a mixed drink. I drank too many shots one night long ago, and now just the smell of tequila can make me physically ill. If it's in a mixed drink though - I can drink it. I've just got a psychological problem with tequila now, I can take shots of anything else -. . .eh, maybe.

    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 7 years ago from San Francisco

      Huh! To think the worm was invented as a marketing ploy!! I always thought it served some sort of function.

    • profile image

      Alcovangelist 7 years ago

      Nice snapshot of tequila history. I came across this very interesting way of celebrating National Tequila Day... have a look.. it reads celebrating National Tequila Day like no other

    • Whitney05 profile image

      Whitney 8 years ago from Georgia

      Not something I recommend drinking straight... At least my tastes don't like it.

    • Rochelle Frank profile image

      Rochelle Frank 8 years ago from California Gold Country

      I once heard that if you are planning a serious drinking event, Tequila is less likely likely to cause hangover. The Theory is that a hangover is bartly due to an allergic reaction and most people are more sensitive to grain based spirits-- while few have developed a sensitivity to Maguey.

      I have not had a chance or an inclination to test the theory, personally.

    • jiberish profile image

      jiberish 8 years ago from florida

      I say margarita's for all. It's July 24th everyday! :)

    • packerpack profile image

      Om Prakash Singh 8 years ago from India, Calcutta

      Good short history of the short shot we take hardly knowing about it!