Tequila Town, Playa del Carmen

I have a confession to make, except it’s not really mine to make. My husband has a small obsession with tequila. That’s not the problem though. The problem is that every time we pass a tequila shop in Mexico, he has to go in to check it out– just to look.  I’m always rolling my eyes thinking, “what’s going to be different this time?”  I love tequila too, but after one or two stores I feel complete, knowing I’ve seen enough.  When I go into these stores though, it raises some questions for me about people and their tastes.

The first: Who drinks this crap? It looks like Pepto.

Strawberry tequila liqueur

Or: What is this? Bang bang! One shot and you’re dead? Not exactly what I’m looking for in a tequila.

I’m getting double vision just looking at it.

It wasn’t until the end of our trip that we found a truly worthwhile tequila shop.  I don’t know if it was the charming Ulises who looks like a modern-day Jack Sparrow, or if we were just in a spending mood. But we were sucked in. Wait, that’s a lie. I do know what it was. It was Ulises. From the moment he opened his mouth, he had us laughing, and the way into my heart is to make me laugh. And once you have a spot in my heart, then I will consider buying something from you. Tequila Town has the ultimate collection of tequila.  You name, they have it.  And since Nick also feels the need to browse the tequila section every time we go into a liquor shop at home, he knows the going rates.  Not only is the selection vast, but the prices are quite reasonable– especially for a touristy tequila shop/bar.  Look at the smile on Nick’s face… like a kid in a candy store!

The next mayor of Tequila Town

They have everything from this (I had to make the picture bigger for Don Timbon. His spigot needed a little enhancement…)To this…We didn’t buy the ever elusive Porfidio, but we bought this… It was only after very thorough (and free) taste testing that we were able to determine that Cava de Oro was some of the best we sampled– and also a great value.  I think we surprised Ulises a little with our knowledge of tequila just as he surprised us with his. And 4 hours later after a fun night at the bar making new friends, we walked away with the Cava de Oro Silver and Extra Anejo.  Go to Tequila Town, and don’t judge this book by its cover.  It really is the best tequila find in Playa.

Me making friends

Update: we returned in November of 2012, and sadly the vibe of the store/bar has completely changed.  Ulises and his fun crew are gone, and it has the feel of any of the lame stores on 5th Avenue just trying to hustle out a deal.  It used to attract a laid back, young local crowd, and now there is just some guy standing at the doorway unsuccessfully inviting every passerby in to an empty bar.


34 thoughts on “Tequila Town, Playa del Carmen

    1. You should definitely go, Kim– the people that work there are really fun and nice. We stopped in to see them this weekend while in town, and it was like visiting old friends. It is on the corner of Constituyentes and 1st Ave. Apparently cheap beer too 😉

  1. Just like you I am a big tequila connoisseur. Like good wine, good tequila can be felt from afar 🙂 I’m gonna check out the state of Tequila where it’s all originally made this December. Super excited!

    1. Yes, merili, the only things I drink are water, wine, and tequila! We always want to visit Tequila when in PV, but haven’t made it yet! I’ll have to live vicariously through you for now… can’t wait to hear about it.

  2. I also bought a bottle of Cava de Oro extra Anejo in Playa del Carmen at a place called Tequila Museum ( FREAKING AWESOME).
    I paid $110.00us for it.
    Jt’s a 5 year old tequila that is worth every penny.
    I’m a lover of single malt scotches but got turned on to fine tequila when I was in Mexico.
    My god, this stuff goes down like honey!
    I’m waiting for a friend to go down to grab me another bottle.
    If you like tequila, and have a bit more money to spend, pick up a bottle.
    You will never regret it.

  3. Bill- We’ve really enjoyed the Cava de Oro Extra Anejo too! Forget the friend, get yourself back down there to buy a bottle– more fun to pick it up yourself 😉

  4. Great thread and comments. In cancun until tomorrow and wanted to leave town with a bottle of Don Julio 1942. Walked into a tequila store called La Disteleira on the main hotel strip to buy one, but after some convincing on the part of the shop keep (and samples), walked out with a bottle of cava de oro extra anejo for 100 usd cash. Cannot wait to sample this more back home and take a break from the scotch.

    Bill – is it 5 years or 7 years aged? Shop keep tonight said 7. In the end it dont matter because this stuff is amazing.

  5. Wow, too funny!!! My husband did the same exact thing while in Playa del Carmen last March!!! We tried several tequilas and finally purchased the Cava de Oro extra anjeo!! It’s so smooth and delicious. One of my friends just texted me wondering where I got that “amazing” tequila!!! Looks like another trip to Mexico for us!!!

    1. Haha, Nikki! These men shopping for tequila are like us ladies shopping for shoes. It’s funny that so many people end up buying the Cava de Oro! If it weren’t truly so good I would be skeptical and wonder if there is a special commission for selling it! Lucky– are you going back to PDC?

      1. Something tells me Tequila Town’s city council is highly ineffective. Which isn’t anything out of the ordinary for most cities, I suppose. 🙂

  6. Extremely happy to see that Cava de Oro is receiving the props that it deserves. We discovered it last year July. I didn’t purchase at first b/c of sticker shocker ($120 cancun). After a day of thinking about and tequila tasting I couldn’t get it off of my mind nor could I find another tequila comprable. So, I decided that I would go back and purchase it. Well, I never made it back to the store and left without it. Upon returning to the states I searched all over the web and in Chicago to find it but I had no luck. Bummer! 5 months later to my surprise my parents gave me a bottle for Christmas. This tequila is designed to be sipped on and enjoyed.

    1. Yeah, Dan. We tasted a bunch in the store and it was the best we tried. Wonder if they’ll ever make their way to selling them here. Nice gift! The blanco is really good too. Very smooth and also great for sipping. We will be heading down in the fall… Might need a refill by then!

  7. …late to the party on this one.. But Playa (or as my cheesy pal calls it “playuhh!”).. is the best spot ever. not the sleepy fishing village is was 12 years ago… but a heck of a lot better than SH$@ hole across the water.
    Two things I DO NOT reccomend, however:
    1. those thatched roof, open air restaraunts downtown.. .. the ‘bannans foster, dry thatch, and stumbling tequila guy do not go well together.
    2. if you stay at one of the outlying resorts (Secrets, etc)… when the cab has to pull into the Federales Check point.. having 4 drunk gringos yelling about being kidnapped is not nearly as humerous as one might think!

      1. ughh, yeah. And I also found out that simply adding “El” before every word does not make one fluent in Spanish.

  8. So being the Tequila connoisseurs that you both are, what tequila’s do you recommend? When we honeymooned in Cancun many moons ago I think I brought home some Don Julio. It was great. That was what was recommended then. I grew up hating tequila and now I love it.

    1. I agree– Don Julio is great. My favorite is Herradurra- it never disappoints. Cava de Oro, of course. I also like Platino by Jose Cuervo (yes, it’s actually a higher end Cuervo.) El Mayor is good for a cheaper bottle. I was never much of a tequila drinker until a trip to Puerto Vallarta. After many failed attempts at getting them to make me a good marg, I gave up. My husband convinced me to try tequila on the rocks with some limes. I was sold– it was Herradurra reposado.

      1. We love Herradura reposado, too, our absolute fave over even Don Julio anejo until this latest tequila buying trip. You must try Amor Mio, a totally different creature, it’s sooo smooth. And we love Cava de Oro, too. More an after dinner sipper as it’s sweet. Bought all three in Playa on our recent jaunt through.

  9. I will look for the Herradurra, although I am waaaaay over on the east coat and might not get the same selection you guys get. We’ll see. My favorite marg at home just comes from the Jose Cuervo Marg mix. Its hard to mess up. My marg moment came one 4th of July many years ago as we had the tequila but forgot the marg mix. So I started doing shots with lemonade chasers (its almost a marg mix, right) and then we ran out of lemonade so it was just straight shots and have been a fan ever since. And after our trips to Mexico I know you have quite the selection to chose from close by. Thanks for the tips!

  10. I just got back from Cabo last night, and while there I bought some tequila in Tequila Town there. They were very knowledgable and helped me make my choice (through lots of tasting). Which I ended up with Cava de Oro Extra Anejo too. Next time in Cabo I will definitly go back there to buy my tequila. It is right across the street from The Hard Rock for anyone looking for it.

    1. Didn’t know they had one in Cabo. That’s cool. I also like to pick up some Herradura in Duty Free– usually a great deal. Luckily we have a trip down there soon because it’s about time to replenish our stock!

  11. Try Clase Azul it doesn’t disappoint and it’s now available in the states. One last tequila I like is Mio Amor extra anejo it’s supposed to be as close to Clase Azul extra anejo which goes for 1500.00 a bottle but at a reasonable 100.00 for the Mio it’s a great deal and a good smooth tequila

    1. Thanks for the tips, Tequila Dave. We actually have the Clase Azul. It was a gift from someone. Good stuff. Will have to look out for Mio Amor. I looked it up, and the bottle looks familiar!

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