I’m not one to pretend to have done any research. There are some interesting Mexican culture and culinary blogs out there, and you can google the story of tequila as well as I can. What I would like to present today is my experience in the tequila aisle at a slightly upscale liquor store here in town. My 21 months in Mexico have absolutely given me a fuller appreciation for tequila. After a brief affair with mezcal, I have gone back to tequila and developed more of a taste for it then I ever thought I would. Let’s call it cultural integration. Sure, sure. I still think the state of Oaxaca is amazingly beautiful, but Jalisco’s fire water treats me better.

I was buying a bottle as a gift, that I hopefully get to share, to take home with me for the holidays. I do not mean to imply anything by having two posts in a row featuring liquor. The rum picture from the previous post was one I have had for a while and been meaning to post. The tequila aisle experience is one I have been meaning to document, but I really only buy liquor a few times a year, like 3. Oh, the simplicity of Peace Corps life…

I didn’t drag my real camera to the store, so I only had my iPod camera to somewhat nonchalantly take a bunch of pictures. No one bothered me for the most part. I could pretend that I was taking pictures to remember brands and prices until I tried to take one of the tasting lady. Then I started to get harassed, but only to try a sample. I hadn’t gone for a run yet, so I declined. I think I get left alone a lot of stores for being a kooky foreigner lady, and that is something I cherish when I just need to run my errands and some things done.

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The tequila aisle in all its bounty, which is really more of a tequila wall. There are a lot of gift baskets on the floor because this is only a few days before Christmas.

Let's start with the basics of the three types. I have no idea if this brand is any good. The bottle were just conveniently placed on the shelf to get the shot.

And the prices. These are pesos, so divide by roughly 12. It is kind of hard to spend a lot of money on tequila. I'm sure it is possible, but it doesn't come close to the wine world.

Some classy looking gentlemen.

Nothing like a liquor tasting in the middle of the day. Drive to the store, test the vodkas, move on to the tequilas, make a purchase, and drive home (or take the bus in my case).

And then we move into the free-gift-with-purchase realm. These add-ons can get a little carried away. How is electronic sudoku a good idea with tequila?

Backgammon I kind of get, because I have had some good times with a drink or two and this game.

The free shot glasses are very appropriate, but just because you put it in a shot glass doesn't mean you can't sip it. Stop doing shots. That is stupid.

Not a bad package with a couple of decent glasses thrown in. Fancy glasses to let you know that this tequila is not for doing shots with. However, I fear they are just trying to make up for less than impressive faux-metal bottle.

No extras here, but just enough ribbon to be a bit special as a gift.

Maybe you aren't swayed by the cheesy games or glasses. How about a good old fashioned 2-for-1 deal? Keep in mind that this is 1.4 liters of tequila for roughly 11 dollars.

Or, maybe you don't need a whole, big extra bottle, just a little one. You know, for the road. (Probably not, in all seriousness. I don't want to imply irresponsibility on the parts of the companies.)

Some of the bottles are beautiful, and some are good tequila too.

Even after making fun of the fancy bottles and marketing, I still wanted to buy this one because of the box.

Moving to the back of the store, nothing says classy like 5 liters of tequila in a garrafon.

Or maybe just 3 liters.

But, I chose something much classier, and I really hope this is the one I had in Mexico City last week. It was delicious, with hints of vanilla. I think. It was my last tequila of the evening instead of my first.