Living in Texas has pretty much disabused me of the notion that tequila is just for shots. I've learned that quality tequila can be sipped like a fine wine, and even experimented on my own with different cheese pairings.
That doesn't mean I'm categorically opposed to knocking back one and a half ounces of agave spirit during certain celebratory occasions. And with Cinco de Mayo right around the corner and my impending dissertation defense, let's just say I have been more open to the idea of doing shots.
Here's the thing about doing a traditional tequila shot, however, I find less appealing. Licking my hand repeatedly. My OCD self cannot handle putting my tongue on a surface that has touched God-knows-how-many contaminants over the course of the day. Yes, I understand I can wash my hand before I take the shot.
Yes, I understand I probably come into contact with an equal amount of crap through other surfaces. I do not care. This is why phobias are irrational. I do not want to lick my hand.
Something tells me someone at the R&D department of Hornitos tequila has similar issues. Recently, the company launched a truly transformative beverage: "Lime Shot," a blue agave tequila laced with lime and salt designed to replicate the shot flavor experience.
So, I bought some to test the taste and, um, to practice (you don't go into the big day without testing the equipment, beforehand, right?). One bottle runs just under twenty dollars, and while this price is certainly reasonable, the purchase was nevertheless a risky venture for me. Rarely do I like sodium-heavy drinks, especially alcoholic beverages; hence my distaste for the bloody mary and the michelada, my preference for margaritas sans salt, and my refusal to try a salty lassi even just once during the two summers I spent in India.
I was fully prepared for Hornitos to be tart a salt bomb that would make me cough and beg for water. I sipped, rather than slugged, my shot to avoid any nasty surprises. The Lime Shot was crisp and striking in texture, with just a fleeting note of citrus. No discernible "salty" taste. I chilled another shot in the freezer for thirty minutes, and this time, just knocked it back. My throat felt like it had been hit with cold lightening but as the tequila washed down my gullet my extremities began to warm and tingle. Yes, this would do just fine.
Just as a marathoner runs just under 26.2 miles before race day, I cut myself off after two shots to save my strength for future celebrations. When the time comes, Hornitos will surely compel me to go the extra mile.