Affordable premium tequila

Premium tequila - likely not the evil liquid.

Premium tequila – likely not the evil liquid that traumatized you in high school – isn’t cheap. Made from 100 per cent blue agave, it’s the product of years of meticulous manual labour and millennia of knowledge. Between sips at Reposado, I asked owner Sandy MacFadyen to recommend a trio of premium tequilas available at the LCBO for less than $45. (I should note that the ratings are my own – and that Sandy, unsurprisingly, has wonderful taste).

Los Arango Blanco

Rating: NNNN

Why Experts consider blanco (unaged) tequilas a benchmark for the category. It’s the purest expression of agave’s painstaking cultivation. Los Arango is bright, crisp and smooth, with notes of agave and green herbs.

Price 750 ml/$40.95

Availability Vintages 357046, limited quantities. If you can’t find any, give Espolón Blanco (750 ml/$42.25, LCBO 324848) a whirl.

Espolón Reposado

Rating: NNN

Why Reposado, with its caramelized agave notes, smooth fruitiness and subdued spice, is one of the most approachable tequila styles. Espolón Repo is smooth and vanilla-forward enough to take neat, with a price point fair enough to justify mixing. Price 750 ml/$42.95

Availability LCBO 324855

Cazadores Añejo

Rating: NNN

Why Añejo, or “aged,” tequilas sit in oak for just one to three years. Aged for the minimum 12 months, Cazadores Añejo is full of spice and citrus. Note: whisk(e)y drinkers can easily wean themselves onto tequila via añejo.

Price 750 ml/$42.95

Availability LCBO 113241

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