Australia becomes world’s third biggest tequila market

Cocktail culture has taken Australia by storm over the past 12 monhts, with a 28% increase in the consumption of cocktails in bars and restaurants. And the drink that rules them – according to CGA’s OPUS consumer study of the on-premise – is the tequila based classic margarita, which recently overtook the Espresso Martini as the most popular cocktail serve in Australia.

Consumers are also becoming increasingly discerning about the tequila that is added to their margaritas.

The growth of premium-and-above spirits is set to be the single largest driver of beverage alcohol value over the next five years. As consumers continue to drink less but better, they’re increasingly experimenting with more sophisticated flavours and serves. Non-traditional luxury categories including agave-based spirits have been identified by IWSR as key trends
for the global alcohol industry in 2023.

The tequila category is premiumising rapidly – 2020 alone saw a 46% increase in global tequila sales, while the category is growing at 34% annually in Australia. In fact, Australia is now the third largest consumer of agave-based spirits per capita, behind Mexico and the US.

Raise a glass to World Tequila Day

It’s World Tequila Day on July 24, which is the perfect time to explore agave spirits. While it’s mid-summer in the Northern Hemisphere, winter in Australia lends itself to a different approach to tequila cocktails.

Proximo Spirits Tequila Specialist Hayley Dixon said: “Winter drinks typically bring warm whiskey cocktails and mulled wine to mind. This winter, we’re showing Aussies how to switch it up when they’re mixing cocktails at home.

“Tequila is an extremely versatile spirit as you can easily swap in for the traditional base. The flavour palate of 1800 Silver is great for any gin or vodka drink, switch any lighter styled whisky for 1800 Reposado. 1800 Anejo offers a deeper and richer flavour and can be swapped in for a scotch.”

Dixon’s top 5 winter cocktails featuring tequila are:

  • Tequila Sour: A fun twist on the much-loved whisky sour which balances spice flavours with a citrus kick. A refreshing cocktail that’s sure to be a crowd pleaser
  • Jalisco Negroni – an agave update on a classic
  • Cinnamon Smoked Old Fashioned
  • Tequila Coffee … step aside Espresso Martinis – the Tequila Coffee just entered the
  • group chat
  • Tequila Toddy – a warm tequila twist on a winter favourite

Tequila Sour

50ml 1800 Reposado
30ml fresh lemon juice
15ml simple syrup
2 Dashes Angostura Orange Bitters
Egg white
Angostura Bitters

Method: Add all ingredients to a shaker with NO ice. Hard shake for 15 seconds. Fill shaker with ice and hard shake for a following 20 seconds. Double strain into a couple glass. Garnish with a few drops of Angostura Bitters

Jalisco Negroni

30ml 1800 Silver
30ml Campari
30ml Sweet Vermouth
Rosemary sprig and charred orange

Method: Add all ingredients to mixing glass filled with ice. Stir down until combined and chilled. Strain into double rocks glass over ice. Garnish with rosemary sprig and orange slice.

Cinnamon Smoked Old Fashioned

50ml 1800 Anejo
10ml Agave Syrup
2 Dashes Angostura Orange Bitters
2 Dashes Angostura Bitters
Orange zest and grated cinnamon

Method: Add all ingredients to mixing glass filled with ice. Stir down until combined and chilled. Add ice to double rocks glass and stir until glass is cold. Tip out ice from double rocks. Light tip of cinnamon on a flat plate using a lighter or blow torch and place chilled double rocks glass over the end once it starts smoking. Once filled with smoke, flip over and immediately fill glass with ice again. Strain cocktail into glass. Garnish with orange zest and a grated cinnamon.

1800 Tequila Coffee

30ml 1800 Silver
10ml Pedro Ximenez
10ml Dark Crème de Cacao
15ml Coffee Liqueur
5ml simple syrup
15ml cold drip coffee
45ml sweetened vanilla cream*
Grated coffee bean

Method: Add all ingredients, minus cream, to a mixing glass filled with ice. Stir down until diluted and chilled. Single strain into a chilled coupe glass. Using a ‘sauce’ bottle float cream on top of the drink. Garnish with grated coffee bean.

*Vanilla cream is made by adding thickened cream, sugar cubes, and vanilla extract to a small sauce bottle and shaking for around 30 seconds until light and fluffy.

Tequila Toddy

50ml 1800 Reposado
25ml fresh lemon juice
10ml honey
Hot water
Cinnamon stick
Clove studded lemon wheel

Method: Add honey to cup with a dash of hot water and stir until combined. Add remaining ingredients and top cup with hot water. Leave cinnamon stick to steep until desired taste, garnish with lemon wheel with 4-5 clove heads studded through.

Why tequila is overtaking bourbon & rum in the US

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