La Biblioteca Tequila
[ The Tequila Library ]
Q: Where exactly does Tequila come from?
Tequila is produced only in Mexico. In fact, according to official Mexican law, authentic Tequila can
only be produced from mature Blue Agave plants that are grown in certain designated regions of the
country. It was named "Tequila" after the town and region ( in Jalisco) where it was first produced
over 200 years ago.
De acuerdo con la norma mexicana NOM-006-SCFI-2005, el tequila se define como sigue:
“ Bebida alcohólica regional obtenida por destilación de mostos, preparados directa y originalmente del
material extraído, en las instalaciones de la fábrica de un Productor Autorizado la cual debe estar ubicada en
el territorio comprendido en la Declaración, derivados de las cabezas de Agave tequilana weber variedad
Just like the taste of grapes grown for wine production will vary from region to region, the location,
soil composition and climate all have distinctive effects on the Agave grown for Tequila production.
Considering this fact, the particular location of Agave farms are chosen very carefully.
The grey areas highlighted on the map below,(which includes the entire state of Jalisco) are the
official Tequila production regions of Mexico.
There are currently a total of 181 designated Tequila producing municipalities in Mexico. If it didn't
come from one of these places, it's not Tequila.
• All municipalities in the State of Jalisco, ie 125,
• 8 municipalities of Nayarit,
• 7 municipalities of Guanajuato,
• 30 municipalities in Michoacan
• 11 municipalities of Tamaulipas.
Q : Why do they grow Agave and produce Tequila specifically
in those areas only, why not just anywhere in the country?
Well, the answer to that is surprisingly simple. Take a look at the satellite photo below and you'll see
what I mean. Good Tequila starts with - you guessed it - a good Volcano.
In the photo you can see how the towns of Tequila and Amatitan ( along with many others )are
strategically located on the rich fertile soils surrounding an ancient Volcano. Some of the most
productive soils in the world are a direct result of Volcanic activity and these same soils also happen
to grow the worlds best Agave.
Here is a photo of that same Volcano but from ground level, looking toward its north face
from an Agave farm just outside the town of Tequila...