Raise Your Glass to National Tequila Day
Here's where to celebrate
By Brandon Watson,
11:15AM, Fri. Jul. 24, 2015
I’ll admit some misgiving about the ever-bulging slate of “holidays” devoted to food and drink. Just this week, I lost myself in the traditions of National Lollipop Day, National Penuche Fudge Day, and National Hot Dog Day. It's exhausting.
I spent all Monday making a wreath of ketchup packets and Cheez Doodles so I wouldn’t be the only one on the block that didn’t get into the National Junk Food Day spirit. I spent all June freezing fish sauce and Formica so I wouldn’t miss out on National Creative Ice Cream Flavor Day (totally forgetting to make reservations for Take Your Webmaster to Lunch Day in all the hubbub). I need to get out of the rat race and fast. My Real Simple subscription is almost expired and my Pinterest board has been overtaken by stills from Magic Mike XXL. I need a food holiday that will make me forget about all the other food holidays.
Thankfully, I received a calendar notification that today, a Friday, the weekend promised to Loverboy if they would just finish that earnings report, today today is National Tequila Day. It turns out that several local eateries and drinkporiums will be celebrating along with me. Did you get my text? I'm positive I sent you an Evite. Whether you lick, slam, and suck or thoughtfully sip is up to your discretion.
Fixe (500 W. Fifth)
True to chef James Robert’s Louisiana heritage, the Downtown Southern hot spot will be serving an Abita Rita using Avion Silver, Grand Marnier lime, orange and Abita Amber beer.
Jacoby’s Restaurant & Mercantile (3235 E. Cesar Chavez)
I know, I know – you’re four five seconds from wildin’ because mezcal is not tequila. But there’s room in this holiday for other traditions, like Jacoby’s take on the classic margarita combining Gracias a Dios! mezcal with agave and lime. For Tequila Day purists, there’s also Livin’ the Daydream – a strawberry/rosemary simple, peach bitters, and lime concoction made with good ole El Jimador.
Due Forni (106 E. Sixth #106)
Due Forni is Italian for tequila (probably). Their cross-cultural exchange, the Calabarita, involves Casa Amigo Bianco and Calabrian peppers. And lime. Always lime.
Salty Sow (1917 Manor Rd.)
For the tequila-loving Sow, today must be a religious holiday. Feel free to sip from their daily menu of signature ritas. The Sow’Rita is a classic take with local Dulce Vida organic anejo, and the Curly Tail gives some subtle heat with serrano, but I have been geeking out on the seasonal Pig Pen: strawberry-infused Altos with a touch of Aperol.
Corner (200 E. Second at the JW Marriott)
Brian Jaymont, the general manager of the JW Marriott’s downstairs hot spot, is a total tequila nerd, and lead bartender Carley Dunavant is a tequila alchemist. Her lighter riff on a marg combines Pepe Z reposado, pineapple, coconut water, lime, and honey syrup. Watch Dunavant make it here.
Isla (208 W. Fourth)
We are not sure what happened to the original Vicious Virgin, but we are sure he was a lovely person. His replacement, the Vicious Virgin #2 combines tequila with light rum, orgeat, and Isla’s proprietary blue curaçao. Although our investigation is not complete, we like to think of #2 as a “person of interest.”
Searsucker (415 Colorado)
The Jale Berry is sort of like Halle Berry except with more strawberry jalapeño tequila. (At least I think she has less. I totally forgot my breathalyzer last time I hung out with her.) There’s also lime, agave, and salt because this is Texas.
Indian Roller (10006 Manchaca Rd.)
A tipple for urban sophisticates and questionably moral (or is that morally questionable) food editors alike, the Primavera Paloma combines El Jimador Reposado, homegrown lemon thyme, and blood orange Italian soda.
Jack Allen’s Kitchen (7720 Hwy. 71 W.; 3600 N. Capital of Texas Hwy.; 2500 Hoppe Trail, Round Rock)
Life is about choices. One day everything is going hunky-dory, and then the next day you are presented with three equally delicious margaritas – one pomegranate sage, one cucumber jalapeño, and a third with mango and habanero. What if you make the wrong decision? How do you even start? To quote Cathy, “Ack!”
W Austin Living Room Bar (200 Lavaca) You didn’t really expect the W to just squirt some ReaLime on a couple shots of Cuervo did you? Their tequila drink combines Casamigos Blanco, with crème de violette, agave, lime, and grapes. (Side note: Crème de Violette is reportedly an early favorite for RuPaul’s Drag Race season eight.)
Roaring Fork (10850 Stonelake Blvd., 701 Congress Ave.)
Also competing this year on RPDR will be Huckleberry Swirl, the little something extra in Fork's frozen Huckleberry Margarita.
El Naranjo (85 Rainey)
El Naranjo has enough tequila and mezcal to lift Alanis Morrisette from her darkest battles with writer’s block. I like the Tres G Manhattan (Tres Generaciones añejo, Averna amaro, and tawny port) and the bestselling Mezcaliña with its punch of serrano and basil agave nectar.
Juliet Ristorante (1500 Barton Springs Rd.)
The Barton Springs Road newcomer is like the Baskin Robbins of Negronis. Today, skip the gin and combine tequila with Campari and sweet vermouth.
I’ve been dying to see what you’ve done with your rumpus room. Invite me over and I’ll bring all the fixings for bar masters Jim Meehan and Enrique Olvera's Casa Dragones-based Pink Panther. You can provide taquitos or steak au poivre. I’m not picky. You can invite your wife if you want to, but you should know that I have always hated her.
2 oz. Casa Dragones Blanco tequila
¾ oz. lime juice
½ oz grapefruit juice
½ oz of agave syrup
2 dashes of Bittermens Orchard Street celery shrub
Shake with ice and fine strain into a collins glass filled with ice. Top with 1 oz. Fever Tree Ginger Ale. Garnish with a lime wheel.