Where to Drink
Tequila pairs well with warm summer breezes, and National Tequila Day on Sunday, July 24, gives you the perfect excuse to indulge. Here are seven bars around Austin with the best tequila cocktails and most extensive selections.
Adjacent to the Alamo Drafthouse on Slaughter Lane you will find a tantalizing tequila oasis. 400 Rabbits offers a variety of different flights based on the origin of the agave, followed by a refreshing sangrita (a traditional fruit- or tomato-based chaser). Those looking for a bold tequila drink should try the Mole cocktail made with reposado tequila, ancho chili, and chocolate and orange liqueurs.
You'll feel right at home at this family-run joint in North Austin. The super-friendly folks who work here are more than happy to walk you through the tequila selection — boasting over 100 different options — so don't be afraid to ask for help. If you prefer your tequila with a mixer, Casa Chapala will whip you up a margarita or another tequila-based cocktail like a paloma or a Jalisco-inspired Old Fashioned.
La Condesa's offerings include a plethora of different tequilas and a decent list of mezcals. The downtown hideaway also has a couple of signature tequila drinks that aren't for the faint of heart, such as the Alma Blanca with habanero, ginger, and pineapple and El Cubico with tobacco, vanilla, brandy, and lemon flavors. The prices can be a little steep, but that's what happy hour is for.
Hecho en Mexico
The tequila menu at Hecho en Mexico is divvied up by types — blanco, reposado, añejo, and extra añejo — rather than by brand, which makes perusing a little easier for the untrained eye. For the connoisseurs out there, the South Austin location hosts a tequila dinner with an expert brand ambassador on the last Wednesday of every month.
Licha's has a beautifully curated list of tequilas that range from recognizable names such as Tequila Herradura to more exclusive brands like Casa Dragones. The east side Tex-Mex haven also features a tasty lineup of tequila cocktails that go beyond the standard margarita. A house option that caught our eye is the Vampira with reposado tequila, sangrita, and grapefruit Jarritos, best enjoyed during the $5 happy hour.
This elevated Mexican restaurant tucked away on Rainey Street lays claim to an entire menu's worth of tequilas and mezcals. Here you are encouraged to sip your tequila straight or enjoy it mixed into a classic margarita with orange liqueur and fresh lime. Stand-out brands include Arte Nom, Fortaleza, Siete Leguas, and Tres Generaciones.
Tacos and Tequila
How do you like your tequila? If the answer is chilled, then you'll love the select tequilas on tap at the aptly named Tacos and Tequila. The modern spot on West Fifth Street also has a few flights in addition to a wide collection of premium tequilas and signature drinks like the Mexican Mule and toasted coconut margarita.