We can all agree that one of the most popular drinks in the world is Tequila. However, you probably do not know the history of it.
It has been a while now since North America has first distilled drink as well as commercially created alcohol. Therefore, you should know that the history of Tequila is both rich and long.
Whether you are thinking of joining the tequila fest orsimply planning on eating in Cleveland, we decided to present you with a brief history of one of the world’s most popular drinks.
Let us start from the beginning.
Things to Know About Agave Plant
You should know that its roots date back to pre-Hispanic times since the natives started to ferment sap from maguey plants. This particular drink was known as pulque, and it is an essential aspect of its development.
We have to start by mentioning Mezcal wine, Tequila’sgrandparent, and peoplebegan its production after the Spaniards got to the New World in the 16th century.
Another name was mezcal brandy, agave wine, while it got the name we currently use in the future. You should know that it got a name from a minor from Mexico in Jalisco state or Tequila.
According to experts and studies, this particular term comes from the Nahuatl word known as Tequila (task, job, duty, or work) and tlan (place). On the other hand, other sources state that it is a changed name of tetilla, a Volcano in Mexico.
However, another name for the agave plant is maguey, and it became an essential aspect of its culture. Remember that the name does not come from natives, but the Antilles imported it in the mid-16th century.
Natives called it maxcametl or metl, which is how they created the name mezcal wine. Keep in mind that they thought agave is a sacred plant or representation of Mayaheul, a goddess who had four hundred breasts to feed all of her children.
Other native people had different names for it, including tocama or carnaba to the Purepecha, while Otomi called it guada. Apart from being an essential aspect of alcoholic drink, natives used it for other purposes as well.
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For instance, they used hemp-like fiber for paper, rope, clothing, and mats. Besides, they used it as a vitamin and nutrient-rich brew known as pulque.
You should know that the agave plant has been a part of culture even before the Spaniels came and colonized a continent. According to historians, people used this particular plant for at least nine millennia for fiber and food.
However, we have not found records explaining how they learned to ferment it into an alcoholic beverage. Even though it was known as pulque in the first records, natives considered it ancient when conquistadors arrived in the 16th century.
How It All Started?
We have mentioned above that everything started with Tequila’s ancestor or pulque, which is something that Conquistadors began in the early 16th century. Since the Spanish have already known how to make alcoholic drinks with meals, they wanted to create something different.
The main reason they used alcohol while eating is that in Europe water was unpurified and dangerous to drink because it had a wide array of parasites and bacteria. That was the main reason why people drank weak beer and wine with meals.
You should know that we could thank Don Pedro Sanchez de Tagle, Marques of Altamira, and Tequila’s father. He was the first person who created a tequila factory at the beginning of the 17th century by cultivating local agave.
Simultaneously, the governor of New Galicia implemented taxes on mezcal wine, which meant that this particular beverage became highly popular.
Besides, Jeronimo Hernandez, a Spanish doctor, stated that Tequila is a useful option for medical purposes including rheumatic cure by rubbing it on a painful area.
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You should know that by the mid-19th century, agave plants were trendy due to their numerous properties. Cuervo was the first distiller who created bottles for Tequila, which happened in the late 19th century.
At one point, he was selling ten thousand barrels of Tequila just in Guadalajara, and even today, his plantations are one of the biggest ones in Mexico and the largest export market in general.