5 Main Tastes of Añejo Tequila

Yes, I know guys… Tequila is a way more complex spirit than one with just 5 taste notes in just one expression of it, less on all of them. I will get to that later! For now though, I’m only highlighting the dominate taste you’ll find across the añejo/extra anejo tequila spectrum that the casual tequila fan is going to pick up on! I’ll leave the rest for all you tequila experts a.k.a. snobs of the world to educate the next level of tequila lovers.

Ok, so now that’s out of the way…

To you casual tequila fans, especially those who are brand new to tequila or just casually drink tequila, this article is for you!

The most common question I’m asked by casual tequila drinkers is what tequila would I recommend to them. My response is always, what taste of alcohol do you prefer. The reason why I answer said question with another question is because I don’t want to recommend a sweet tequila to you when you hate sweet alcohols and you end up thinking all tequila is terrible. Then you end up mad at me because you’ve spent $50-$100 on a bottle you think is trash.

I just can’t have that people!

So for the sake of you guys being able to find a proper tequila that fits your taste pallet, here’s a guide to help you narrow down your next tequila purchase based off of the main taste in alcohol you love.

Peppery/Spicy Tequilas

This category of tequila is very tricky and I’ve found to be very hit or miss for my particular taste. Tequilas that have a strong pepper/spice to them tend to be more of the popular tequilas on the market and are the ones people typically refer to when they think of tequila. You get a strong pepper or typical straight alcohol flavor up front, in the middle, and at the end. You can’t really pick up on many other flavors when sipping it straight because honestly, the shit burns too much. Then you end up needing to put it on ice, take shots of it with salt and a lime, or adding it to some type of mix in order just to bring out the other flavors in the tequila and to just enjoy it in general.

Personally, I just can’t get with it.

Others love it though and I’m not going to knock anyone for what they enjoy. If you do enjoy this dominate taste profile then you’ll be able to find tequilas of this nature at just about any place liquor is sold and usually has the cheapest price of all the tequilas they stock.

Sweet (Dessert) Tequilas

So these tequilas main taste are going to either have a strong vanilla, caramel, or sweetener taste to them. They’re going to be something that is great for those who love a more sugary/sweeter taste to their spirits or cocktails and little to no bite at all to their liquor. Some people may look down on these tequilas because they tend to have additives and artificial flavors added to them in order to produce that sweet taste. I personally like some of them though, at least when they’re not done over the top and aren’t in the over the top fancy contraption bottles.

In fact, one of my favorite tequilas of all time (Afamado Extra Anejo) fits the perfect blend of tequila in this category to a T!

They provide a nice change up to the traditional taste I tend to stick, are great with a bolder more peppery sugar, and are nice to enjoy as dessert to a great steak. I imagine it would taste fantastic when paired with a great scoop of ice cream or an amazing slice of peach/cherry cobbler as well!

Damn my mouth is watering now! Why did I just do that to myself?!?!?

Moving on…

Fruit Forward Tequilas

I was thinking about combining this category with the sweet category, but then had another sip of Pasote and just couldn’t do it. I know this isn’t the right way to describe the exact flavor but these tequilas have a strong taste similar to a passion fruit or tropical fruit of some sort.

It’s like they mixed in the magical deliciousness of exotic fruits with some delicious agave and it resulted in this amazing witch’s brew of love!

I absolutely love it!

They tend to be lighter in color, nice refreshing flavor to them, and extremely enjoyable to sip on. I imagine they would be fantastic in a nice tropical concoction of sorts and pair blissfully with an amazing seafood meal. I typically pair a medium body or a mint infused smoke with these tequilas, especially the mint! I can’t fully describe the bliss of it once you put on some good Reggae or positive vibe music with this.

You’ll just have to try it for yourself!

Agave Forward Tequilas

These tequilas are just a straight agave flavor bomb! They tend to have a nice pepper flavor that accompany them, but overall it’s just like sipping straight agave juice. They’re perfect for those hot summer days where you want something that’ll be revitalizing or great in a nice refreshing mix or margarita.

Perfect after workout tequila!!! Yes, I just made it a thing!

Rest assure, this will be the first tequila I’m grabbing to mix up a pineapple and tequila cocktail once all this damn snow melts and the heat wave comes through!

I would highly recommend this taste category to mixologist, cocktail lovers, margarita fans, and those who just love a refreshing spirit with a little punch on the finish. You can either go with a bold cigar or a coffee/chocolate infused cigar with this tequila taste profile as well. The complimentary flavors of the pour, or lack their of, won’t overwhelm the flavors of your smoke and will be a highly enjoyable combo to kick back to with the crew or kicking back by yourself for a relaxing evening.

Well Balanced Tequilas

Now this is my shit right here!

This is my favorite taste category of them all! I live for a tequila like this and no one will ever change my mind!


These tequilas feature a great balance between fresh agave, pepper, oak, and hints of some type of sweet flavor notes to it! This is what I think is the sweet spot of all the añejos/extra añejos and is where tequila heaven resides!

This style of tequila will never give you an over powering flavor in one direction or the other, goes well with just about any type of smoke you choose. You can also eat just about any meal with this and it will complement every single bite.

This taste category tends to be what most casual tequila lovers prefer overall once they really try what I would consider a real tequila. One more thing, if you’re a bourbon or whiskey lover, this is the tequila for you too!


Well there you have it ladies and gents! Hopefully after reading this you’ll have a better understanding of what type of major taste in an añejo you’ll enjoy the most. If not, then don’t say I didn’t try to help! Before you make your next trip to your local beverage distributor of choice, make sure to read this first.. Again… Then ask your local store expert to point you in the right direction of whichever category you want to start with or live in. If they don’t know what you’re talking about then make sure to tell them they need to come directly to this article, drink more tequila, and learn how to do their damn job!!!

Or they could just hire you so you can drink all the free tequila they provide you with.

Win win either way is how I see it.

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