Altos Tequila Tasting with Merivale Papi Chulo Sydney

Imagine tequila without the rock salt on your wrist, the quartered lime in your mouth, and the white, fleshy worm staring you right in the eyes as it dances around the base of the bottle.


This was the extent of my ‘tequila tasting’ experience, up until now.


Jesus Hernandez, master distiller at Olmeca Altos tequila, partnered with Pernod Ricard Spirits Educator Ben Davidson and the Merivale team to host a tequila tasting at Papi Chulo’s where he enlightened his guests on the intricate flavours and sophisticated art to indulging in the spirit.


Produced in Jalisco, Mexico, the product is distributed to and available only at select bars in 80 countries world wide, and holds one of the top positions as a versatile, flavoursome inexpensive tequila.


With tequila cocktails served on arrival and the infamous Papi Chulo pea guacamole dip, Hernandez and Davidson took us through two of Olemca’s award-winning tequilas: the Tequila Plata and Tequila Resposado.


Beginning with the Plata, a clear tequila, our senses were ignited through the citrus aroma that permeated from the glass. The herbal notes gently slid down the throat and provided a gentle head rush effect. You could tell I was quickly becoming a tequila snob.


The second tequila, thankfully paired with an exquisite lunch prepared by Head Chef of Papi Chulo, Nick Imgraben, was the Resopado, a tequila aged for 6-8 months with a golden syrupy colour, complimented by vanilla, woody flavours.


Davidson noted that at times, the Olmeca distillery would create the tequila with the 500 year old method of Tahona rolling, which involves crushing one and a half tons of cooked agave on the volcanic stone, then fermenting the cooked agave for 36 hours. The brick ovens were to thank for ensuring all the sweet juices from the agave plant are strained and kept in the tequila.


Jesus Hernandez’s passion for tequila was uncompromising, as he guided through a tequila tasting took place at a (semi) appropriate hour of the day, he and Ben both attested an average tasting day begins at 7 in the morning.


Sipping on the spirit with a panoramic view of Manly beach and Papi Chulo’s notorious curly fries nourishing me, everyone wondered the same thing:


“How often do you drink tequila?”


“Eh, it’s my job.”






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