One Shot From Tequila Town
Coxy: What better place to stay than in a hostel named "Tequila" with big rooms, high ceilings and a cat called "Cuzco negro" who seemed overly friendly and wanting sugary cornflake milk.
Guadalajara has very little to see, compared to other places we have seen. However one of the highlights (of the trip) was our personal excursion to Tequila town. Our guide Miguel took us to two tequila distilleries, the first (" tres mujeres") of which we saw first hand the tequila production process. Fieldsof blue agave plants individually harvested sometimes up to ten years old ( for the really good tequila). The leaves trimmed, leaving the hearts of the plant trucked back to the factory where they are baked in traditional adobe mud hut ovens for 48 hours. The product is then crushed and luquid extracted ( non- alcoholic) into huge vats where yeast is added where it is fermented. There are 3 standard distilled tequila; blanco ( distilled once), reposado (distilled twice); anejo (thrice) and extra anejo (aged in oak barrells from France for an even longer period of time).
Then came the fun bit, tasting the finished product. We sampled blanco, joven, reposado, anejo and extra anejo. We learnt that cleansing the pallette with orange or cucumber or pineapple helps with savouring the taste of the tequila. After 8 shots we hopped back in the taxi to he next factory, first stopping by the side of the road to take a quick snap of us next to the famous Tequila Town sign.
On arrival to the next factory, Gran Cuervo, and after a short tour of their process we got to tasting again. But not before getting adorned in traditonal garb ie sombreros, dresses an fake pistols. Things became a bit of a blur after that.. But the highlights include; meeting a muscly blue eyed Cuban who was enamoured with Tamara; Miguel behind the bar serving up his own cocktail concotions; and discussing business propositions with the owner to open up a tequila saloon bar in Melbs.
We had a traditonal mexican meal of beef soup before we headed back to the hostel. One of the best things about the tequila binge is the lack of hangover the next day!! Amazing!
Day Three and we set off for the up market suburb of tlaquepaque (7 kms away). Beautifully adorned artisan shops side lines the streets of this place where vendors sold interesting producta and traditonal foods. I highly recommend a visit or stay in Tlaquepaque for it dose of art and creativity (styles representing regions from all over Mexico). One of the most endearing parts of this place was the Mariachi plaza where many mariaci bands congregate and play songs on request tp diners and drinkers for a fee. What agreat way to take in some tunes!