Blue agave plants being harvested for Tequila production, Jalisco, Mexico 25 Jan 2019
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The town of Tequila in the Central Highlands of Mexico is surrounded by thousands of acres of bluish-green, spear-like, agave plants. Under Mexican law, at least 51 percent of any tequila must be made from the Tequilana Weber agave. Weber agave grows only in this region of Mexico due to the red volcanic soil in which it thrives. This is the best species of agave for tequila production as it has the highest carbohydrate content.
Tequila is made by slowly baking the core of the Weber blue agave to break the carbohydrate down into fructose. It is then pummelled to extract the juice. The juice is fermented and distilled twice, creating a clear liquid that can be bottled (silver tequila). Another technique is to age the tequila in wooden barrels giving the liquid time to mellow and become its signature amber colour.
Updated 25 January, 2019