Slideshow: Ask a Bartender: What Are Your Favorite Tequilas?

A Few Tips
A Few Tips
"Tequila and I had a falling out in college and we haven't been on speaking terms since. That said, I can offer advice. By Mexican law, if it's 51% blue agave, it can be called tequila. The makers can fill out the other 49% with whatever crap they want. Always look for tequila labeled '100% blue agave.' Also, look at the color. If it's dark yellow, that's not a product of natural aging—it's caramel color. An aged, pure-agave tequila will be the soft, summery gold of wheat." — Chad Musick (Sip Tasting Room and Rooftop Lounge)
Different Bottles for Cocktails vs. Sipping
Different Bottles for Cocktails vs. Sipping
"Don Julio 1942 is a wonderful high-end anejo tequila. It's widely distributed in most cities, but on the expensive side.  In terms of affordability, Siembra Azul is excellent. Their blanco hovers just under the $40 mark, but tastes much pricier. For cocktails, I tend to lean toward something more strongly flavored, Lunazul is very reasonably priced and stands up well to citrus and other modifiers. As for sipping, I enjoy any of the Tequila Ocho products, it's all single vintage tequila—so if you're in the mood, you can taste two wildly different expressions of the same tequila." — John Henderson (Scholars, Tavern Road)
Hornitos is Versatile
Hornitos is Versatile
"If I had to pick my favorite high end tequila, I would have to choose the Corzo Anejo. For affordable... Sauza Hornitos. For the price, I think it is a very versatile tequila. I like to mix with silver tequilas. Bright fresh flavors of silver tequila like to blend with fruits and juices."— Chino Lee (Departure Restaurant)
Sip Partida Blanco
Sip Partida Blanco
"Partida is my favorite high end tequila; I love sipping on the blanco. Corralejo is my favorite affordable tequila." — Sarah Mengoni (South Water Kitchen)
Check Out Siete Leguas
Check Out Siete Leguas
"My favorite high-end tequila is Milagro Barrel Select reposado and my favorite affordable tequila is Siete Leguas reposado. I also enjoy Siete Leguas for cocktails and sipping." — Justin Fairweather (Evelyn Drinkery)
Don Julio for Cocktails
Don Julio for Cocktails
"I have tasted many rare, delicious tequilas, but Fortaleza is a high standard. Affordable tequila? I recently tried tequila Altos and was very impressed by both flavor and price-point. For cocktails? I think Don Julio has such a great portfolio for making a wide variety of drinks. For sipping?  It's always nice to have a change-up and I think Ocho Estate's terroir-focused tequila offers exactly that." — Bryan Ranere (Foreign Cinema)
Gran Centenario Leyenda
Gran Centenario Leyenda
"Higher end: Gran Centenario Leyenda. Affordable: El Tesoro Platinum." — David Welch (Lincoln Restaurant & Sunshine Tavern)
An Affordable Option: Orendain
An Affordable Option: Orendain
"Fortaleza Reposado, or old school Tapatio. Tres Agaves is great in cocktails.  We used to drink this cheap stuff called Orendain in San Diego. Don't know much about it, but it tastes like vanilla and the locals in Tijuana seem to dig it." — Michael Lay (Restaurant 1833)
Good Values in Blanco Tequila
Good Values in Blanco Tequila
"I like sipping on a lot of different blancos. Nothing too expensive; so many good tequilas are of great value.  I love the line from Ocho, Partida, Tapatio, and the El Tesoros." — Brian Means (Fifth Floor)
Casamigos Blanco, Affordable and Delicious
Casamigos Blanco, Affordable and Delicious
"Favorite high-end tequila: Herradura Selecion Suprema. Affordable: Casamigos Blanco. In cocktails: El Jimador Reposado. For sipping, at the moment, I have to go back to Casamigos Blanco." — Chris Mann (Distrito)
Don Julio 1942, Milagro Special Reserve
Don Julio 1942, Milagro Special Reserve
"I am still learning about tequila, but Don Julio's 1942 is amazing and Milagro Special Reserve is perfect for sipping.  Having said that, I know that there are many others out there and I am on a mission to find them." — Roger Bailey (Filini Bar and Restaurant)
Fortaleza
Fortaleza
"I love the traditional, Tahona ground styles, and Fortaleza is one of my favorite tequilas around, hands down." —Mike Ryan (Sable)
Another Vote for Ocho
Another Vote for Ocho
"Pueblo Viejo is great for cocktails. For sipping, I really like Ocho or Chamucos." — Carlos Yturria (E&O Asian Kitchen)
Pueblo Viejo
Pueblo Viejo
"Right now I'm drinking Pueblo Viejo—blanco, reposado, and añejo—and having a good time." — John McCarthy (Greenwich Project)