Selected Tequila Bibliography
Tequila: A Traditional Art of Mexico. Ruy Sánchez, Alberto and de Orellana, Margarita (eds.) Smithsonian Books (2004).
Recommended for novices and aficionados alike. Mixing text with engaging graphics and montages, the book itself is attractive and artistic without compromising on information or facts. The book puts tequila in the context of Mexico’s independence and Revolution, while imparting all the necessary details of tequila production, though the idealization of the hacienda system is off-putting.
The Book of Tequila: A Complete Guide. Emmons, Bob. Open Court (1997).
This classic was perhaps the first comprehensive reference book about tequila. An excellent introduction for the novice, if you can get past the somewhat pedantic tone. The general information on the production, history and geography of tequila is solid, although the information on specific brands and distilleries is out of date. Includes tasting tips as well as food and drink recipes using tequila.
Tequila: The Spirit of Mexico. (Second edition). Martinez Limón, Enrique. Abbeville (2004).
A good general overview of tequila with excellent photos. More a coffee table book than a reference work, it’s unique in that the author is willing to go on the record and review and rank dozens of tequilas. However, he doesn’t make his criteria clear and many of the brands reviewed have changed signifcantly since the book was published.
Tequila: A Natural and Cultural History. Valenzuela Zapata, Ana G. and Nabhan, Gary Paul. University of Arizona Press (2003).
A fascinating work from two botanists specializing in the study of agaves. Equal parts romantic paean to the spiritual and cultural power of tequila in Mexico, and fairly erudite horticultural science. The book is most interesting when focusing on the plagues and problems of the contemporary tequila industry, and the relationship between globalization and agave production.