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We finally got a chance to try the recently launched Tanteo brand of infused tequilas. Now, I know what you’re thinking: flavored tequila? Isn’t that just a sneeze away from Bacardi Limon? And the answer is: not at all. Or at least not in this case.
Tanteo, which is made of 100% Weber blue agave and comes in japaleño, chocolate and tropical fruit flavors, is redolent of real ingredients. The jalapeño has a nose filled with grass and green pepper, while the chocolate is more mole than milk dud–although there is some malt there–with its silky mouthfeel and piquant finish. The tropical fruit is all flowers on the nose, but is also hinted with jalapeño heat, which makes it reminiscent of the fresh-cut mango sprinkled in salt and pepper you get on the street in Mexico. In all cases, but especially with the jalapeño, which is the most popular of the three, the heat from the pepper fuses with the heat from the alcohol, causing your brain to process the two simultaneously so you don’t end up overwhelmed by either.
Tanteo is only allowed to exist because the Consejo Regular de Tequila, a government body in Mexico that regulates tequila the way the French regulate wine, ruled in 2006 that tequilas could be infused. It makes for a decent sipping tequila but is designed to be mixed into cocktails, like this margarita:
1.75 oz Tanteo Jalapeño
0.75 oz Grand Marnier
1.5 oz fresh lime juice
0.5 oz agave nectar
4 lime wedges
In a shaker, muddle lime wedges and agave nectar. Add remaining ingredients and ice. Shake and finely strain. Serve in a chilled margarita glass or over ice in a rocks glass. Garnish with a lime wheel.