Happy National Tequila Day, booze hounds!
While some xenophobic folks are less than pleased with the relationship between the United States and Mexico, it’s hard to deny that these two countries have had a profound effect on the history and culture of the other. Hell, we Americans pretty much have our own holiday based around the consumption of everyone’s favorite Mexican export, tequila (because Cinco de Mayo is only celebrated in one region in Mexico as opposed to every restaurant that serves tacos in the United States). But have you ever wondered where your favorite blackout beverage from south of the border comes from, exactly? Probably not, since tequila and moments of deep thought rarely go hand-in-hand. So today, on this holiest of days honoring hooch, we’ll tell you.
As decreed by Mexican law, all tequila (okay, not all since small quantities are allowed to be produced in Michoacán, Nayarit, Guanajuato, and Tamaulipas, but whatever) comes from the state of Jalisco on the western side of the country. In fact, no beverage produced outside of Mexico can be legally referred to as tequila, so if it doesn’t say Jalisco on the bottle it was probably made in some dude’s bathtub.
It seems fitting that tequila, being such an integral part of the world’s view of Mexico as well as its most recognizable export, hails from Jalisco — the state was also the birthplace of such Mexican symbols as the mariachi band, the wide-brimmed sombrero, and the Mexican hat dance that is performed around it. I don’t know if it’s appropriate to call Jalisco “typical” Mexico, since a country so large and diverse can’t be defined by only one of its states, but it is the region that has had the largest impact on what the world thinks of when they hear the country’s name. So that’s cool.
But back to the tequila. Feel like sucking some of the sweet stuff out of its native soil? Guadalajara (the second-largest urban area in Mexico) and Puerto Vallarta (the classier version of Cancun where Elizabeth Taylor started her dalliance with Richard Burton) are both located in Jalisco so there are plenty of opportunities for tourism. I guess it just depends on if you prefer to sip your tequila in an urban club setting or off the belly of a blonde girl named Crystal reclined on the beach bar.
So raise your glass in one hand and your salted lime wedge in the other, and join me in giving a National Tequila Day toast Jalisco, Mexico!
…Oh gosh, when did my top come off?