Explained: What Is Still Strength Tequila?

What Is Still Strength Tequila?

A tequila-based cocktail is a most refreshing drink on a sunny day. You can find numerous recipes for tequila cocktails, because this is a versatile spirit. But whether or not you’re a tequila drinker, you’ll come across a term connected to the spirit sooner or later — “still strength”. What exactly does still strength tequila mean? 

Distilling The Essence

Still strength tequila is usually an artisanal spirit which is bottled at its still strength. This means, the tequila is uncut, unfiltered, and preserved in its most authentic and potent form.

What Is Still Strength Tequila?

Still strength tequila is tequila whose ABV is not diluted with, say, water and hence is at its 'purest' form, capturing the true essence of the agave. Most tequila makers cut their tequila with water, mainly to achieve the required amount of ABV. In the United States, the required ABV for tequila is a minimum of 40 percent. Distilleries also cut the alcohol  to maintain a certain flavour, as some people might find a higher ABV tequila too strong. A standardised ABV also helps in getting a specific alcohol-to-flavour ratio in the spirit.

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Still strength tequila means the distillers bottle the spirit directly from the still without using any alcohol-cutting additives. Due to this practice, the ABV of still strength tequila can vary in a wide range.

What's The Difference?

Tequila enthusiasts would know about brands that sell the spirit bottled at 92 proof (46 percent ABV) to  110 Proof (55 percent ABV). This is much higher compared to tequilas produced in Mexico, whose ABV is 35 percent owing government's taxes. Mexico, whose national drink is tequila, charges taxes to beverage makers in direct proportion to the alcohol content of distilled spirit.

It is also key to note that every high ABV tequila is still strength tequila.

What Is Still Strength Tequila?

There are varying opinions on whether still strength tequila has a more favourable flavour profile or not, but cocktails made using still strength tequila are, we’re happy to report, delicious.    

Tequila connoisseurs and mixologists choose still strength tequila to get its bold and unadulterated flavour. However, many-a-times, it may be priced at a higher range compared to regular tequilas.

A Recipe For Still Strength Tequila

Here’s a recipe for a White Negroni that uses still strength tequila: 


45 ml still strength tequila
22 ml ginger liqueur
22 ml dry vermouth
A dash of bitters
Dried grapefruit for garnish


Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass and add ice. Stir until chilled and strain the mixture into a cocktail glass over an ice cube. Garnish with a dried grapefruit.

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