What hath night to do with sleep?
Tequila, for many folks, has been the reason to forget what they were up to the previous night. It generally conjures up images of youthful abandon and exuberance.
Around the 1940’s the young guns were looking out for party drugs to carry the thrill, and mixing drinks with syrups needed some tempering. To tackle the phenomenon, drinking straight was in trend again, and the youngsters were loving it. Liquor manufacturers across the globe missed to notice this surge, but the agave distill producers examined it the right way. “Lick, Sip and Suck” was the new drinking philosophy, the shot was born and it dearly helped the tequila sales rocket up all over.
The Tequila Buzz
Over a time period we have come across many celebrities associating with tequila brands and even making their own tequilas. 2019 was definitely the year when this trend reached a new peak.
How did the trend pick up?
Casamigos, by the Oscar winner George Clooney, was the first celebrity-backed tequila to hit the market in 2013, but the rise and nearly $1 billion sale of his brand has seen a wave of actors, musicians, athletes and even reality stars follow in his wake. Clooney and Gerber wanted the audience to relish a great tequila at an affordable price, because money wasn’t something they were after. All they wanted was to deliver an experience , but the “plata” formally called “dinero” which translates to money, came along.
In 2017, George Clooney sold his tequila company Casamigos to spirits and beer giant Diageo for a whopping $ 1 billion. In 2018 George Clooney became the highest paid actor, even though he did not appear in any film that year.
God bless the cactus juice!
The Saga :
2019 was the year when this trend attained a new peak. Michael Jordan and a team of four others created Cincoro tequila in 2019. Nick Jonas’ Villa One launched in 2019. SummerGods from Stephen Jenkins, the lead singer of the alt-rock band Third Eye Blind and Prospero Tequila from British singer-songwriter Rita Ora also came up in the same year. Since then the trend has just gone upwards as many famous personalities across various industries have been occupying the blue agave fields all across Mexico and coming up with some astounding fire water.
In 2020, Dwane Johnson also known as ‘The Rock’ came up with his finesse brand Teremana, Kendell Jenner came up with her own tequila brand ‘818’ tequila earlier this year.
Tesla and Tequila?
Elon Musk suggested the idea of introducing Tesla tequila as a joke on 1 April 2018. Six months later, Musk filed an application with the US Patent and Trademark Office to trademark “Teslaquila” and teased a visual of the bottle on Twitter, which had a much more generic form than the final product.
Within the next two years, the tequila was finally launched and went out of stock within the first two hours. It comes in a lightning-bolt-shaped bottle and is a premium 100% de agave tequila añejo, aged in French oak barrels, featuring a dry fruit and light vanilla nose with a balanced cinnamon pepper finish.
As soon as the next day, people began reselling the bottles on eBay for thousands USD. Liquor sales are not allowed on the platform, so the bottles advertised for sale were all empty.
- The tequila personality
The liquor has been witnessed to have a really fun and frolic personality, moreover its a user friendly alcohol. Margarita being America’s favourite cocktail, tequila being America’s go to dram, there is absolutely no fussing around with this spirit. No liquor in today’s drinking culture, has a crispier drinking image than tequila.
- The Hollywood culture
With Hollywood culture so driven by image and status, it makes sense that a celebrity would want to be associated with a spirit that is “cool.”
The mere association’s also not just helps the brand but also the budding celebrities. It adds their name to a conversation that also includes George Clooney, Michael Jordan, and The Rock. The social media factor and indication of a good time being had by whoever is holding the bottle adds a layer of persona to the beverage and hence, to the celebrity associated with it.
Moreover, California leads in tequila sales volume, so it’s clear that California enjoys its tequila.
- From the fields to the market
While some spirits like Scotch age for a minimum of three years, tequila generally takes less time. Depending on the expression, the agave-based spirit requires three years in a barrel at the maximum, and the minimum can be rolled out anytime within a couple of weeks. Moreover, there are plenty of contract distilleries in Mexico, getting something on the shelves in a short amount of time isn’t unrealistic.
- The Variety
Tequila holds the capability to portray various visual and flavorful profiles. If you like your sip to be clear and young or caramelized with age, the liquor offers it all with classified subtlety.
It caters the likes of every age group, enthusiast and industry. Blanco (silver) and Joven (gold) tequilas appeal more to the fans of white spirits, whereas, brandy and whiskey pundits are more likely to be fascinated by the barrel-aged Reposado (aged) , Anejo (extra aged) and Extra Anejo tequilas (ultra aged).
- The wellness benefits
Even if you want to go for a healthier option, the drink does not miss the opportunity to amaze you. Look for tequilas that are labeled as ‘100 percent agave’ , they might even have ‘organic’ and ‘gluten free’ written on the label. Moreover, speculations have been made by many researchers that the spirit aids weight loss. Tequila can even help lower your blood sugar. Agavins are the sugars which occur naturally in the agave plant. They are non-digestible which means they act as a dietary fibre and also support growth of healthful microbes in the mouth and intestines.
- The monetary opportunity
The global tequila market reached a value of US$ 10.8 Billion in 2020. Looking forward, the market is projected to reach US$ 25.4 Billion by 2026. A significant rise in the popularity of cocktail culture both in and out of the house represents one of the key factors impelling the global tequila market growth.
A good example is the growth and market valuation of Casamigos. The growth of the beverage is not limited to any one particular segment, it’s growing all around and the trend is only forecasted to go higher.
Capital expenditure is also much more economical when it comes to making tequila as the celebrities don’t need to build a distillery or plant crops of agave and wait seven years for them to mature. They just need to be involved with the process and take on the marketing aesthetics.
The Mexican voice
Mexico for a long time has associated the nation’s history and heritage with the blue agave spirit, and the beverage remains to be a big deal for the locals. They are true to its authenticity and don’t want it to be hampered with. Some locals were triggered by the added flavours and the use of diffusers to extract sugar from the agave, instead of cooking it. This resulted in a bland spirit that doesn’t taste much like the orthodox tequila. They fear that the human palates will adapt to these flavours, and play by it.
They have been urging the celebrities to respect the procedure, and use the power and influence to make sure that it’s done well.
As the appetite for agave keeps getting stronger , the liquor has skillfully casted off the “cactus juice” stereotype and has repositioned itself as a major player in the industry.