Jimadors cutting blue agave outside Tequila in Jalisco state Mexico

Source: Matt Mawson / Getty

Tequila, the distilled spirit made from Mexico’s blue agave plant, has its fair share of fans across the world for good reason. At its best, tequila is just as enjoyable as some of the aged spirits of lore and we’re putting a spotlight on the juice ahead of National Tequila Day (July 24).

Like other adult beverages, tequila tastes are varied and the prominence of the spirit has grown greatly over the past few years. While most take to whisky and bourbon served neat in glasses around the world, tequila can also be consumed neat as well. Below, we’re featuring some of our favorites in alphabetical order.

National Tequila Day Is Upon Us

El Espolón

Created in 1998 under the watchful eye of Master Distiller Cirilo Oropeza, El Espolón is an affordable and approachable tequila that we’ve enjoyed in times past. The Blanco expression is a great base for margaritas and sips fine on its own with a nice kick of pepper. We haven’t tried their aged expressions, but we’re hoping to do so soon.

Jaja

Jaja is one of the newer brands on the scene and the spirit produced by brothers Maurice Tebele and Elliot Tebele, and their friend Martin Hoffstein captures the best of Jalisco’s pride in their offerings. Jaja has Blanco, Reposado, and Anejo expressions and we can confirm that this is quality stuff for the price point.

Jose Cuervo

If you’re a reader of Spirit.Ed then you already know how we feel about Jose Cuervo, one of our favorite brands ever. The fine tequila makers introduced its latest expression, Jose Cuervo Tradicional Cristalino, which is an aged Reposado rendered crystal clear. So you get the smokey aged goodness with all the clarity of a Blanco. This is a knockout tequila, trust us!

Lobos 1707

Lobos 1707 boasts a hefty number of celebrity partners from the world of sports and entertainment, which usually means the juice inside the bottle might not measure up. That isn’t the case with Lobo 1707. Founder Diego Osorio, using a method perfected by one of his relatives, can stand proud in knowing that he’s carrying on strong Mexican tradition in their tequila and mezcal offerings.

Milagro

Milagro caught our attention after we featured them in one of our roundups at Spirit.Ed and we find ourselves going back to the bottles often. The Anejo expression made for an excellent Old Fashioned for us recently but sips beautifully on its own, as do all of their base expressions. We haven’t gotten around to the Select offerings yet but hope to do so soon.

Villa One

We’ll keep it funky with you. We haven’t tried Villa One yet but we’re intrigued. This tequila from Nick Jonas and John Varvatos blends blue agave plants from the highland and lowland regions and is crafted at Fabrica de Tequilas Finos in Jalisco. Once we try this one out officially, we’ll be doing a full-on review. Color us intrigued.

Bonus: Onda

The ready-to-drink (RTD) category is exploding across the adult beverage scene and Onda, a lightly flavored tequila seltzer, is aiming to latch on with consumers. We’ll be sampling this one pretty soon and will report back when we have it on hand. Far as we’re concerned, it looks to be the real deal and we might just take the plunge while shopping throughout the weekend.

National Tequila Day is this coming Sunday (July 24). No matter what you chose to sip on for the celebration, do so responsibly.

As always, sip safely and surely.

Photo: Getty