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Tequila Marketers Branch Out, Adding Flavored Offerings

June 21, 2019

While flavored Tequila hasn’t captured nearly the consumer attention of flavored vodka or flavored whiskies, there are a handful of brands now offering Tequilas with added flavoring. The majority are playing in the premium or super-premium tier and are 100% blue agave Tequilas.

Among them is Dulce Vida, part of the Milestone Brands portfolio led by Deep Eddy veterans Eric Dopkins and Chad Auler, which makes a range of 35% abv, 100% blue agave Tequilas including lime, grapefruit, and pineapple jalapeño. In addition to its flavored offerings, Dulce Vida’s standard lineup is unique in that its Blanco, Reposado, and Añejo are all bottled in both 40% and 50% abv expressions. Dulce Vida is projected to surpass 65,000 cases this year, according to the company.

Another brand targeting the flavor space is chili-flavored Ghost Tequila ($25), a 100% blue agave spirit spiced with Bhut Jolokia extract that’s billed as having a hint of spice without too much vegetal flavor from the pepper. Currently Ghost Tequila is focused on the on-premise, aiming for inclusion in spicy Margaritas, Palomas, and more adventurous shot occasions. Ghost founders Chris Moran and David Gordon recently brought on Patrón and Casa Dragones veteran Andrew Teubner as chief commercial officer of the company.

Playa Real, another young brand with flavors in its portfolio, produces three Tequilas—an unflavored Blanco, and mandarin and pineapple flavored variants—and sells for around $35 a 750-ml. The brand’s flavored offerings are made with fruit extracts and are bottled at 40% abv, slightly higher than the 35% abv common to flavored spirits. Likewise, Tanteo Spirits’ namesake brand has released a series of jalapeño-, habanero-, and chipotle pepper-infused Tequilas aimed at cocktails and playing in the super-premium segment.—Shane English

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