Jackie Moffett (NW Tequila Fest) on 5th Anniversary of ET

Experience Tequila launched in December, 2008. To commemorate our fifth anniversary, we asked friends and colleagues for their comments or reflections on our first five years. We will post the comments over the course of several months. 
In three short years, the Northwest Tequila Fest has established itself as a top-flight event that attracts tequila aficionados from throughout the United States. Fest co-founder Jackie Moffett is a true agave dyanmo, getting more done before lunch than most people get done in a week. We are proud to have been a part the the Northwest Tequila Fest for the third consecutive year.

“Experience Tequila has been a crucial part of the success of Northwest Tequila Fest, and we are grateful to, and forever learning from Clayton. No one I have met knows more about tequila, and his continued commitment to education means that those of us in the agave world have an amazing asset and resource for spreading the good word about tequila.

Congratulations on your first 5 years, Clayton! Here’s to many, many more.”

-Jackie Moffett, Northwest Tequila Fest

Jackie Moffett and Clayton Szczech at the El Llano tasting room in Tequila, Jalisco.
Jackie Moffett and Clayton Szczech at the El Llano tasting room in Tequila, Jalisco.

This testimonial is part of a series marking Experience Tequila’s fifth anniversary. If you would like to submit your own, we would love to hear from you! Simply email us

Ann Tuennerman (Tales of the Cocktail) on 5th Anniversary of ET

Experience Tequila launched in December, 2008. To commemorate our fifth anniversary, we asked friends and colleagues for their comments or reflections on our first five years. We will post the comments over the course of several months. 
Tales of the Cocktail kicks off in New Orleans this week. Tales is arguably the largest and most important bar industry and cocktail culture event in the world.  Ann Tuennerman founded Tales 12 years ago as a way to show off the vibrant, unique history and culture of her native Crescent City. Ann is a zealous advocate for spirits education, for both trade and consumers. It was a pleasure to finally host Ann in Tequila Country last year, and we look forward to future collaborations. 

“I think Experience Tequila has a wonderful way of spreading the culture of tequila knowledge due to the small, hands-on nature of the company and the tours. This builds intimate personal relationships with the people who care about this region, its history and its culture.

Congratulations Clayton on creating a business that you enjoy and are passionate about sharing with others.”

-Ann Tuennerman,  Tales of the Cocktail

This testimonial is part of a series marking Experience Tequila’s fifth anniversary. If you would like to submit your own, we would love to hear from you! Simply email us

David Grapshi on 5th Anniversary of ET

Experience Tequila launched in December, 2008. To commemorate our fifth anniversary, we asked friends and colleagues for their comments or reflections on our first five years. We will post the comments over the course of several months. 
I first met David Grapshi at the Spirits of Mexico festival several years ago. Since then, I have had the opportunity to spend time with him in both Mexico and the US. He laid a large part of the foundation that the rest of us aficionados are standing on, having created the agave spirits program within the Sazerac Company. David was instrumental in bringing Tequila Siete Leguas to the US, for which we are all eternally grateful! 

“Clayton has taken the initiative to not only talk about tequila and the importance of educating the consumer, he in fact is taking it to the next level by leading groups down to Mexico and experiencing tequila production first hand. There’s no better way to learn about the business of tequila than to experience it for yourself.

Clayton, keep it going! Best wishes.”

– David Grapshi, Independent Tequila Consultant, Former Importer of Siete Leguas, Pueblo Viejo and the San Matias tequilas, and Del Maguey mezcal.

This testimonial is part of a series marking Experience Tequila’s fifth anniversary. If you would like  to submit your own, we would love to hear from you! Simply email us.  

 

Clayton Szczech with DavidGrapshi
Experience Tequila founder Clayton Szczech with David Grapshi at a tasting in Seattle, Washington, December, 2011.

Tomas Estes on Fifth Anniversary of ET

Experience Tequila launched in December, 2008. To commemorate our fifth anniversary, we asked friends and colleagues for their comments or reflections on our first five years. We will post the comments over the course of several months. 
Tomás Estes probably needs no introduction to tequila aficionados. As a restauranteur, he brought 100% agave tequila to Europe. For this and the rest of his unceasing research and education into tequila, the CNIT (Mexico’s National Chamber of the Tequila Industry) named him Tequila Ambassador to Europe. His ideas about terroir in tequila led to the creation of Tequila Ocho as a collaboration with the legendary Carlos Camarena. What’s more, he is an eager mentor, a paragon of humility and a truly good person and friend.

“Clayton, congrats on your five year milepost – especially on the success you’ve had in changing the landscape of the Tequila category.

I have told numerous people about our tour of Portland and Seattle and how the groups of your regular customers you assembled outshone the trade groups in levels of expertise and enthusiasm about Tequila. You have certainly created a following of impassioned people and this makes a deep difference. Thanks for all you’ve done for the category and all you continue to do.

With respect and admiration, “

– Tomás Estes, Ocho Tequila and Ambassador of Tequila to Europe

Tomas Estes with Clayton Szczech
Tomás Estes with Experience Tequila founder Clayton Szczech at an educational tasting they co-hosted.

This testimonial is part of a series marking Experience Tequila’s fifth anniversary. If you would like  to submit your own, we would love to hear from you! Simply email us.  

Jason Silverman (Agave NYC) on Fifth Anniversary of ET

Experience Tequila launched in December, 2008. To commemorate our fifth anniversary, we asked friends and colleagues for their comments or reflections on our first five years. We will post the comments over the course of several months. 
Jason Silverman has been running the excellent tequila bar at Agave NYC for over four years. Jay is a true-blue Weber friend of the agave, and an excellent barman to boot. Having been sent to Agave NYC by the Tequila Whisperer in, I believe, 2009, I had the pleasure of sitting at Jay’s bar for many hours. I was flattered that he was the first person ever to recognize me from my Website! It was the first of several visits, and Agave continues to my my first recommendation for those seeking Mexican libations with heart in New York City. 

“Clayton Szczech has been an inspiring and supportive leader for people in the tequila world for many years. He has been generous to me personally as well as other aficionados with all he has to share about his time in Mexico and his vast expertise and knowledge of the tequila industry. I hope to work together again in the future spreading the word about agave spirits and look forward to learning more about the inner workings of the tequila and mezcal industries from Clayton.

For as long I can remember Experience Tequila has been the standard for touring the Agave Spirits regions in Jalisco and beyond. Clayton has a knowledge, dedication and organization that is unrivaled for those interested in learning more about Agave Spirits.”

Agave NYC logo

Jason Silverman – Agave NYC

This testimonial is part of a series marking Experience Tequila’s fifth anniversary. If you would like  to submit your own, we would love to hear from you! Simply email us
Jay with Don Javier Delgado of Cantina La Capilla in Tequila, Jalisco.
Jay with Don Javier Delgado of Cantina La Capilla in Tequila, Jalisco.

Tequila Whisperer on Fifth Anniversary of ET

Experience Tequila launched in December, 2008. To commemorate our fifth anniversary, we asked friends and colleagues for their comments or reflections on our first five years. We will post the comments over the course of several months. 
“Lippy,” better known as The Tequila Whisperer, was one of the first personalities we discovered in the US tequila aficionado community, in 2009. At the time, Lippy was producing and hosting a weekly tequila tasting show. If you’ve ever produced video of any kind, you’ll understand what a monumental labor of love this was. The Tequila Whisperer show was a rallying point for the US agave community, and “the Lip” could and can be relied on to give his honest opinion on any tequila, all while letting his impressive freak flag fly. I’ve always admired his unique and useful tequila rating system. Lippy continues to produce the occasional Whisperer show, as well as host tasting events in the San Francisco Bay Area.    

“It has been a pleasure to watch the Experience Tequila group grow in influence and spread its word of 100% enjoyment of 100% de agave spirits! Experience Tequila is a leading voice for artisanal distillers and farmers throughout the tequila-producing region. Here at the Tequila Whisperer Show we’re proud to know Clayton and wish his business 100 more years of faithful service to Mayahuel and the agave spirits industry! Salud, Experience Tequila!”

“Lippy”,  Founder, TequilaWhisperer.com

This testimonial is part of a series marking Experience Tequila’s fifth anniversary. If you would like  to submit your own, we would love to hear from you! Simply email us
For better or worse, this is the only photo that exists of The Tequila Whisperer and Experience Tequila founder Clayton Szczech.
For better or worse, this is the only photo that exists of The Tequila Whisperer and Experience Tequila founder Clayton Szczech.

Dori Bryant on Fifth Anniversary of ET

Experience Tequila launched in December, 2008. To commemorate our fifth anniversary, we asked friends and colleagues for their comments or reflections on our first five years. We will post the comments over the course of several months. 
It’s entirely appropriate that our first comment comes from Dori Bryant,  founder of the Spirits of Mexico festival. Dori is a trailblazing leader in the US agave spirits world, with a career in distilled spirits going back many years (don’t worry, Dori, no numbers!). Dori has been a mentor, role model, cherished friend and was one of our first supporters.  

“While Experience Tequila is a company which I hold in the highest regard, it’s the person behind the company who is on my personal and professional pedestal. Integrity, passion, patience and dedication are words which only begin to describe Clayton Szczech. His knowledge of the industry and the extra special care and attention that Clayton imparts to all he meets combine for one elegant package — be it his tours, his work ethic or his seminars. I have had the pleasure of attending a few of Clayton’s seminars–he’s well-versed, he educates, captivates and involves his audience. It has been our pleasure to have had Clayton associated with us at The Spirits of Mexico these past two years. Congratulations Clayton and Experience Tequila. Happy Fifth! Here’s to the next 5!”

Dori Bryant – IWSC Group / Spirits of MexicoDori Bryant

This testimonial is part of a series marking Experience Tequila’s fifth anniversary. If you would like  to submit your own, we would love to hear from you! Simply email us

On Tequila and Sexual Performance

Mayahuel desnuda
Popular beliefs about tequila abound, and often contradict each other.
“It gives you the worst hangover,” say some.
“No, you can’t get hung over from 100% agave tequila,” is the hubristic retort of many aficionados.
The debate over tequila’s effect on sexual performance is equally divided. We doubt that the following yarn will settle the issue, but hope you’ll agree that it’s entertaining. This tale appeared in the syndicated column De política y cosas peores by Catón on December 10, 2010. It was translated by Clayton Szczech. All rights are reserved by the author and translator, respectively.

Mayahuel desnuda
Detail of mural at Tequila Rubio

Candorio, an innocent youngster, married Pirulina, who would have been a virtuous woman, were she not hindered by her thoughts, words and acts…Before kicking off his wedding night, Candorio went down to the hotel bar and ordered a double gin. He told the bartender that he hoped the liquor would take away the nervousness of the occasion, and beyond that would give him vigor and strength to rise to the occasion, as he suspected that his new little lady tended to the exotic in matters of love.

“Let me give you some advice,” offered the bartender, “I am a man of experience in matters of Venus and Bacchus. I mean that I know about love and drinks. So I can assure you that gin is not a good stimulant for mattress battles, on the contrary, it inhibits libidinous impulses, and puts out the incandescent flames of carnal passion. Consider the sailors of the British Navy in the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries: according to Dana, their captains gave them gin to extinguish their manly lust during those long wanderings to find breadfruit or a new passage to the Indian Ocean. That was how they kept Her Majesty’s Navy free from the germ of disorder and quarrels caused by unbridled passions, poorly suppressed jealousies or unrequited love. Don’t drink gin, sir. Instead, drink a couple of glasses of tequila. The juice of the plant called Agave Tequilana Weber is proven to fortify erotic impulses. An inspired poet from Saltillo said it in resounding alexandrine verses:

‘Tequila, gentlemen, more than liquor, is magic. / It banishes sorrow; it soothes afflictions / It makes the lover adroit. It tunes the singer’s voice. / If your body is weak it lifts your spirits. / It gives you strength and spirit in battle / It warms you in winter; and in summer exalts you, / and at all times offers comfort and hope. / In short, tequila is a heavenly gift. / The Holy Mother Church should declare it / a second holy water, if not sacred, / and use it as anointing oil at baptisms, / and at the last rites, so that the soul leaves / happy and without sorrow this vale of tears ….’

“So much for the inspired poet of Saltillo. Trust me, young man, drink two shots of tequila, not gin, which if at other times can be a fine drink, on this very special night could take from you all the thrust, potency, nerve, substance, inspiration, grit, vitality and vigor that a groom needs on his wedding night to hoist to full mast his triumphant flag of manhood and acquit himself with grace in the sweet contest of love.”

The only thing Candorio got for certain out of the barman’s lyrical outburst was that tequila increases desire and gin on the other hand shuts it off. So he downed two glasses of the best tequila, and headed for the honeymoon suite. A few hours went by. The bartender was already preparing to close up when the groom appeared again. He came in dragging his feet, exhausted, weak, completely spent. With a feeble voice he asked of the bartender: “A bottle of tequila for me, and for my bride, four bottles of gin!”  THE END.