Photo taken by Stephen Boisvert
Guadalajara is the second largest city in Mexico and the capital of the state of Jalisco. Known as the City of Roses, it was founded on Valentine’s Day over 460 years ago.
Scattered throughout the towns in the countryside surrounding Guadalajara are many of the Mexico’s best tequila distilleries.
Most are within a short drive and can be reached on your own in a rent a car or via one of the many tours offered from the city.
Some of the best tours include the Sauza Tequila Distillery Tour, Tequila Express Tour and the Tlaquepaque and Tequila Distillery tour.
Sauza Tequila Distillery Tour
The Sauza tour takes you through the famous Sauza distillery. You can see how the agave plant is transformed into the tasty national drink of Mexico.
You can participate in the harvesting of an agave plant and then see how the plant is milled, fermented, distilled, aged and then bottled.
Once you finish the tour there are tasty, tangy tequila drinks waiting to be enjoyed.
You can also visit the Sauza Family Museum and see all the paintings, photos and tools displayed in what used to be the Sauza family home. Admission is inexpensive and worth it.
Tequila Express Tour
The Tequila Express is one trip not to miss. The train, La Leyenda (Legend) picks you up in Guadalajara and takes you to what is considered the breadbasket of tequila – Amatitán and Casa Herradura.
The train leaves mid-morning and takes you through the countryside of Jalisco with beautiful mountain vistas and views of the fields of agave on the way to Amatitán.
Once at Casa Herradura,tours take you through the old and new factories, taste testing of tequila and a unique authentic fiesta with delicious local foods, folkloric dancing, mariachis and more.
Tlaquepaque and Tequila Distillery tour
The Tlaquepaque tour takes you to Hacienda Rio de Plata where tequila has been distilled since 1943 and is the oldest factory near Guadalajara.
Here you will see the distilling process and get to taste all the types from añejo to reposado to blanco. Following the tour, you are taken to downtown Tlaquepaque to listen to the sounds of mariachis and enjoy a wonderful meal in one of the more than dozen restaurants.
A visit to Guadalajara would not be complete without a tour to a tequila distillery. Any one of these three tours will give you the opportunity to see how one of Mexico’s largest industries works. Salud!