There are many tequila cocktails, but only a few that I strongly recommend you try. If your tequila experience has been limited to shots of gold tequila with a lemon and salt, check out this list to expand your horizons. The beauty of tequila is that the agave flavor brings an earthy, sweet element to drinks that no other liquor can and it is interesting to see how that flavor reacts with a variety of mixers.
It goes without saying that the Margarita is the most widely known tequila cocktail. This cocktail is not only delicious as it was originally intended to be made, but has had thousands of variations derived from it that are fun to explore.
For some of those variations, check out Margarita Madness.
Tall and refreshing, this is one of my favorite lazy afternoon tequila mixed drinks. Grapefruit juice and lemon-lime soda are ideal pairings for tequila and this drink is simple to throw together for last minute entertaining.
4. Juan Collins
I like to include the Juan Collins in the list of essential tequila cocktails because it shows off a fine tequila in such a wonderful way. I like to use reposado tequilas for this variation on the popular Collins drinks (John Collins, Tom Collins) in which lemon, sugar and club soda allow the spirit to shine through in all its glory.
6. Brave Bull
A little more on the darker side, the Brave Bull skips all the fruity flavors commonly found in tequila drinks, opting for another great flavor pairing, coffee. Very simply, this is a lowball made of tequila and Kahlua on the rocks. Think of it as a Mexican Black Russian.
Want a little blue in your life? This neat tequila drink is ideal and a wonderful taste of tequila, blue curacao, and pineapple. Shaken and served in a cocktail glass, it is also an elegant addition to any affair.
8. Bloody Maria
The Bloody Mary is one of the most popular mixed drinks of all time, but have you tried substituting tequila for the vodka? If you're like me and enjoy all things spicy you will not go back to the vodka version because the tequila adds a dimension to the classic, tomato-spice mix that is simply the perfect match.
10. Passion Cocktail
You may have noticed by now that many of these essential tequila cocktails are variations on a drink typically made with another base liquor. In this instance, the Passion Cocktail is based on the Cosmopolitan. Why all the similar drinks and why do I recommend you try them? For the simple fact that if you are new to tequila but are familiar with these other popular cocktails, trying these drinks will give you a good sense of how tequila reacts with flavors and mixes you know. It is all about the experience and then the experimentation.