The Faces in that (Mexican?) Frame

I should probably confess that in the age of dynamic design programs and versions of those programs like Photoshop and Illustrator CS5 – I do a quick scope to make sure no one in the office is looking – then open up MS Paint, which is not all that different than rocking a word processor at your desk.

Forget functionality, look at that color! No bueno!

So what kind of visual wonders do I construct in this truly masterful program (where you’re not able to edit much of anything without starting the whole project again!)?

Well heck, I thought, why not introduce the Tres Agaves team/bloggers in a festive frame with a Brady Bunch patchwork of faces (Jamie’s face is not that big in comparison to the others really; I’m learning to resize). But seriously, look at the detail in that frame! All those suns! So sunny! Not sure it’s Mexican really as I found it on iStockphoto but it could very well be Mexican? I typed in ‘Jalisco, authentic, frame’ in the search field.

You’re probably asking who are all these lovely smiling people in that totally Mexican frame? What do they do at Tres Agaves? What can I expect from their blogs? Head to the kitchen and mix yourself a Margarita (with Tres Agaves Organic Margarita Mix). Take a sip or two and read on…

I wrote these intros below so they are not members of the team team espousing grandiose thoughts about themselves…

Mia Harlock (me), Marketing Manager. I’ll be writing about things I see in the press, food and beverage-related tid-bits, and on occasion, events/festivals and random streams of consciousness blah that result from ADD and too much caffeine.
Steve Halili, Marketing Assistant. Steve is our social media dude so he’s the best resource for all things digital, which basically means all things these days, doesn’t it? Let’s narrow that field and say Steve will be waxing poetic about ‘community’.
Ned Cartmell, Marketing Project Manager. He’ll be blogging about Tequila mostly, maybe with a sports score thrown in now and again.
Chris Galante, Arizona & Colorado Market Manager. Out-and-about, in the field, bars and restaurants. It doesn’t matter what Chris says really: 97% of the time it’s funny.
Jamie Chilberg, NorCal Market Manager Jamie is that friend that’s so cool that she knows everything cool going on in your city, and I’m like “Where do you find about about all this?” but I think it’s just in her blood.
Eric Rubin, Brand Director. He’s our knowledge man: 100% agave Tequila, Jalisco, the culture and traditions of Mexico, spirits and the bar & restaurant industry. He’s also our op ed man, so expect some pretty passionate thoughts on things.

We’ll have 4-6 blogs (combined, not each) a month for all you readers moving forward, so make sure to watch this space…

No go finish off that Margarita!

Uno + Dos + TRES = Perfecto!

Caprese Cocktail by Mixologist Patrick Johnson

Santa Cruz-based mixologist Patrick Johnson created this Caprese salad-inspired cocktail with Tres Agaves’ 18 month oak barrel-aged Añejo Tequila, our new Organic Margarita Mix, Cocktail-Ready Agave Nectar, and a medley of organic produce you can find at your local farmer’s market or real foods store.  A refreshing interpretation of the classic Italian starter dish.  (Gotta’ love that Mozzarella garnish!)


2 oz Tres Agaves Añejo Tequila

1 oz Tres Agaves Organic Margarita Mix

Splash of Tres Agaves Cocktail-Ready Agave Nectar

1 medium sized organic cherry heirloom tomato

5 medium sized basil leaves

Small dash of celery bitters

.5 oz lime juice

3 turns of fresh cracked pepper

Dash of Chipotle powder

Small ball of Mozzarella cheese


– In a mixing glass muddle organic heirloom tomato and basil leaves.

– Add Tres Agaves Añejo Tequila, Tres Agaves Organic Margarita Mix, Tres Agaves Cocktail-Ready Nectar, celery bitters, lime juice, and fresh cracked pepper into salt rimmed glass.

– Add ice and shake hard.

– Fine strain through a tea strainer into glass.

– Add a dash of Chipotle powder to top of cocktail.

– Garnish with a cherry heirloom tomato, basil leaf, and small ball of Mozzarella cheese.

Flor Delice Cocktail by Alex Smith

San Francisco Chronicle’s 2011 Bar Star, Alex Smith

Check out our favorite monthly recipe created by Alex Smith,
winner of SF Chronicle’s 2011 Bar Star Award.


1 1/2 oz. Tres Agaves Reposado

1 oz. Manzanilla Sherry

1/4 oz. Maraschino

1/4 oz. St. Germain

2 dashes Regan’s orange bitters

French maraschino cherry, for garnish


Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice.
Stir vigorously and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
Garnish with a very good quality French maraschino cherry.

Sweet Heat!

Looking for a way to cool off during these long hot summer days? Dave Nepove, the director of mixology for Southern Wine & Spirits of California, has created an amazing cocktail for those times where you want to stay cool, yet have a kick of spice to your day or night.


– 1 ½ oz. Tres Agaves Reposado

– 1 oz. Licor 43*

– ½ oz. Tres Agaves Cocktail-Ready Agave Nectar

– 1 oz. fresh-squeezed lime juice

– ½ fresh jalapeño pepper (seeds removed)

– Lime wheel and/or thin jalapeño strips, for garnish (optional)


Muddle jalapeño in lime and agave nectar.  Add ice and Tequila, shake well and strain over fresh ice into a Collins glass. Garnish with lime wheel and/or thin jalapeño strips, if desired.

* Licor 43, or Cuarenta Y Tres (Spanish for “43”), is a bright yellow Spanish liqueur. It is made from citrus and fruit juices, flavored with vanilla and other aromatic herbs and spices, in total 43 different ingredients (hence the name).


Grilling Tri-Tip for Tacos!


Calling all grill amateurs, intermediates, and master chefs!  Steve Halili’s very own rendition of Mexican tacos will have you asking why you ever bothered cooking seasoned-ground beef on the stove!

Serving Size:

3-4 People

Total Cooking and Prep Time:

45 Minutes – 1 Hour


-2 lbs of Tri-Tip (Trimmed)

-2 Jalapeño Peppers

-1 White Onion

-1 Stack of Cilantro

-12 oz Queso Fresco

-Cayenne Pepper

-Garlic Powder

-Coarse Sea Salt

-Fresh Ground Pepper

-Extra Virgin Olive Oil

– 4 Limes

-Bag of Small Corn Tortillas


Before anything, you should light the charcoals in a smoke chimney. While the coals are heating up, begin to prep the tri-tip by applying a healthy amount of coarse sea salt, fresh ground pepper, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and finely diced up jalapeño peppers. Once you have all those ingredients on the tri-tip, begin to massage the dry rub onto the meat while applying a light coating of extra virgin olive oil. Afterwards, begin to dice up the cilantro and onion and mix them together into a bowl. Cut up the limes in order to squeeze your lime juice to top off the tacos.

Once you’re done with the prep work, the coals on the grill should be just about done and should be smoking white. Arrange the coals on one side of the grill, this will allow for the application of direct heat and indirect heat. Afterwards, you want to place the tri-tip on the portion of the grill that is directly underneath the charcoals for about 5 minutes, flipping the tri-tip over every minute within that time frame in order to give it a nice sear and grill marks. Then proceed to move the tri-tip to the other side of the grill in order for it to begin cooking under indirect heat, which will allow for a slower cooking method that doesn’t dry out the meat. The tri-tip should be flipped every 5-7 minutes for about 25-30 minutes. If you have a meat thermometer, you should shoot for an internal temperature of about 125-140 for a rare to medium rare finish.

After the tri-tip has been cooked on the grill, step away from the carving station and drop the knife because you want to give the tri-tip time to ‘rest’. By leaving the meat alone for about 10 minutes you allow the meat to cook internally while allowing all the juices to re-enter the center of the tri-tip. Once those arduous ten minutes of waiting are up, you can finally carve up the tri-tip, but be sure to cut against the grain of the meat in order to achieve maximum tenderness. For example, if the grain on the meat is running horizontally, you want to cut the meat vertically. This simple, yet very crucial moment in the cutting process can make a meal, tender and juicy or hard and fibrous. Once you’re done cutting up the meat into small cubes, you can begin the customization of your very own tri-tip taco with the diced onions, cilantro, quartered limes and queso fresco!

We here at Tres Agaves would love to hear about your successful grilling stories, pictures, or any feedback you’d like to leave! [email protected]

That’s My Jamm.

David Roark Ruiz creates locally produced hand-made organic jams tailored for cocktails, which are all custom made and fashioned around a specific libation or ingredient found in that cocktail. David was generous enough to concoct a Tres Agaves Reposado Tequlia inspired cocktail with a jam he developed specifically for this cocktail.

2 oz Tres Agaves Tequila

1 oz Fresh Lemon Juice

1 tbs of Strawberry Habanero Jam

Pepper Revolution!

Strictly reserved for the seasoned mixologists, we have a cocktail that is a true alchemy of savory and sweet, but still light and refreshing, with a sophisticated pepper kick as a result of the various/unique pepper infusions.

Patrick Johnson, mixologist based in Santa Cruz, constructed this libation especially for Tres Agaves at Hecho en San Francisco event on Cinco de Mayo, 2011.

Pepper Revolution

– 2oz Tres Agave Blanco

– 1oz Pepper infused agave syrup (see specifics below)

– Juice of 1 lime

Shaken, served on the rocks

Agave soaked peppers used as garnish

Pepper Agave Syrup

– 2:1 agave nectar to water

– Toast black pepper corns till fragrant

– Red, green, gold bell peppers sliced and seeds removed

– Anaheim and aji peppers deveined and seeds removed

– Cook till peppers are soft, and agave nectar dissolves fully into water.

– Remove from heat and let peppers remain in syrup overnight.

– Strain and save the peppers for garnish