Made by distilling the pine of the blue agave plant, tequila is a world-known spirit-lifting spirit. Although it is more on the stronger side, even for seasoned tequila enthusiasts, it is a very charming drink you can enjoy sipping slowly, in a cocktail, or as a shot.
However, when choosing how to use your tequila, you should know that not all tequila kinds are suitable for each use.
There are four types of tequila, Blanco, Reposado, Añejo, and Extra Añejo, and all work best appropriately used.
The tequila Blanco is the sharpest one as it doesn’t age, or it ages for a few months. It is translucent and pretty harsh.
The reposado tequila ages and is more flavorful than the Blanco, while añejo and extra añejo are the types of tequila that ages the longest and are very smooth, refined, and extremely flavorful.
The Blanco type is the most suitable one for shots, while the rest of the tequilas work alone or as a part of a cocktail.
Still, since there are so many different brands of tequila, each particular for the flavoring and distilling process, there are many tequilas on the market that are good for shots, even from the reposado and añejo categories.
Also check: 20 Best Tequila Drinks To Order at a Bar
15 Smooth Tequila for Shorts
In the following article, I will make a list of tequilas that are best for shots to make things easier for you when choosing which one is best for you.
However, before I start, I must mention that tequila is a strong spirit, and you need to know your strength before doing tequila shots, as what you have intended to be a fun night may end up in a disaster.
1. Teremana Blanco
Teremana is yet another refined tequila brand that prioritizes the quality of its product. The Teremana brand takes pride in the 100% agave tequila they produce, and the Blanco is the one I am recommending for shots.
Beloved by bartenders as a tequila that does excellent when mixed, the Teremana Blanco is incredibly sweet as a shot. It is sweet with a touch of vanilla and white pepper, sharp in the beginning, smooth in the end, and sweet in the middle. This tequila is most certainly one of the best on the market.
2. El Jimador Silver
Named after the men who harvest the blue agave, this tequila-producing brand has a long-lasting tradition, and it takes much pride in the quality of its product. This tequila is of excellent quality and is one of the best on the market.
This tequila is both sharp and warm, smooth and very edgy. It is versatile, and it is definitely suitable for people with different tastes and preferences as there are many aspects of this spirit.
It starts with a citrus and lemony fresh note, with the blue agave sweetness mid-palate, and ends with a spicy and smooth finish.
This is definitely a rich-tasting tequila with an intense but not overwhelming burn. Be careful, though, as you can easily go overboard.
3. Casamigos Blanco
The Casamigos brand is known as the people’s brand, and the tequila they make is intended to be available for all. Therefore they characterize as a quality tequila brand for the affordable process. The Casamigos Blanco is strong, but milder compared to most blanco tequilas.
It is easily drinkable, with an expressive blue agave flavor and distinct vanilla notes.
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4. Maestro Dobel Diamante
This is a Blanco tequila that is untypically smooth and gentle, especially since the Blanco category is known for its sharpness and intensity of the burn it creates. It starts with the aromas of lemongrass, agave, charcoal, and oak.
On the palate, it is flavorful, tasting like agave in the beginning, oak in the middle, and finishing very smoothly with a black pepper spiciness. As a shot, this tequila is intensive and full-flavored, and it is takes you inside its web, only to leave you wanting another one.
5. Patron Silver
Another gringo tequila, the Patron Silver, is known for its sharpness and fieriness. It combines the aggressiveness of the tequila with the sweetness of the blue agave and the citrus-freshness and white pepper spiciness.
It starts with citrus notes, sweet in the middle, and finishes smoothly with the white pepper polish-off. Definitely an excellent choice for shots.
6. 818 Blanco
This tequila Blanco has been specially designed for shots and is characterized with smoothness and sweetness. Since it has been intended to do shots with, the producers have managed to make this spirit extremely easy to drink with a consistency so smooth it is almost creamy.
It starts with a vanilla flavor, continuing with a cream soda sensation, with an expressive alcoholic and spicy finish.
This tequila is definitely a good choice for you if you like gentle-tasting drinks that are tender with your palate but not as tender with the burn. Still, the burn is bearable, and it tends to linger on for a while after you drink the shot.
7. El Bandido Yankee
This is yet another tequila brand whose purpose is to create and produce tequila that is of high quality but accessible and affordable. Popularly called “the crowds’ tequila,” this spirit is indeed that, the people’s drink.
It starts with notes of pepper and vanilla and is buttery in the middle with a smooth and long finish and a burn you will never forget. This tequila, although intended initially for slow sipping, has grown to become a very famous choice for shots, as well as for cocktails.
8. Fortaleza Blanco
Complex and very strong, this tequila characterizes by a hot but smooth finish as well as an intense alcoholic taste. It still has the recognizable sweet agave sensation and an elegant, understated, but still a noticeable vanilla note.
This tequila incorporates a few flavors that are not common for tequila but are delightfully well combined and go incredibly well in a shot of this tequila. It tastes like black pepper and olives polished off with a natural and herbal whiff, rounding out the flavors nicely.
9. Olmeca Altos Plata
This is an award-winning tequila and is definitely worth a shot. It is a Blanco tequila type retaining the typical tequila aggressiveness but toned down with the blue agave sweetness and the lemony freshness that make this tequila one of the more refined ones.
Even though it is a tequila Blanco, meaning that it is not typically intended for slow sipping, this tequila seems to fit nicely in all combinations; slow sipping, shots, as well as cocktails. The mixologists would say that this tequila is the best one for margaritas.
10. Espolon Blanco
Made with 100% blue agave, this tequila is said to be a representation of the Mexican culture. It has a perfectly balanced taste that combines the sweetness of the blue agave, the sharpness typical of the tequila spirit, the playfulness of the makers, and the citrus flavors that represent a nice flavor refreshment.
This tequila is great for shots, as it is very flavorful, and even as a shot, you will be able to feel its fruity and sweet notes.
11. Siempre Tequila Plata
This tequila seems simple and straightforward, while, in fact, it is more complex than it initially shows. It starts simply enough to make you think that this is just another alcoholic beverage, but it finishes so smoothly with intense floral and fruity notes that will make you realize that this is no case an ordinary tequila.
It was initially intended for slow sipping, but the word quickly spread that it is excellent for shots too, which is why it found its place on this list.
Many would argue that as a shot, this tequila doesn’t shine completely due to the speed of drinking, but I would say that you will be able to experience every single ounce of flavor, but at a higher speed.
12. Chamucos Blanco
Smooth and flavorful, this tequila is very complex and deep, yet cheerful and light. It has a very smooth but hot finish, with an expressive vanilla flavor mixed with citrus, cinnamon, and fennel notes.
This tequila is produced in small batches, and the brand pays attention to each and every detail related to the production process. This is a fruity and somewhat floral tequila, perfect for shots, especially if you are not that experienced in the tequila department.
13. Cenote Blanco
This drinkable tequila tastes intensely and expressively, but it doesn’t overwhelm you. It starts gently with a citrus and agave flavor, and it continues to seduce you with the vanilla and the established agave notes in the middle. It finishes gently and smoothly with a spiced black pepper sensation.
This tequila is also slightly smoky as it ages for three weeks in oak barrels, during which it acquires the somewhat burnt aroma, which gives a nice once-over to the rest of the flavors involved.
14. 1800 silver
Bold and sharp, this tequila is certainly not for those who are not fans of a long-lasting burn. Even though this is a top-shelf tequila, don’t be fooled by its delicate appearance, as it will burn you and burn you well.
It starts with the typical blue agave sweetness, and it goes on sharply from the middle until the end. Although it has a smooth finish, typical for the huger-end tequilas, it has an expressive spicy finish dominated by the white pepper flavor and a burn that will stay with you for a while.
15. El Tesoro Añejo
Even though the añejo tequilas aren’t exactly made for shots, as they are well-aged, smoky, rich, and intended to be enjoyed slowly, the El Tesoro Añejo tequila seems to work excellently for shots.
Aged in American oak bourbon barrels for up to three years, this tequila has a smoky sensation intertwined with a slight bourbon taste.
It is darker than the usual tequilas intended for shots, starting with a maple flavor, continuing with dark caramel and smokiness, interspersed with fruity and floral notes.
A shot of this tequila is full of flavor and exceptionally aromatic, smooth, with a nice warm burn. Its taste lingers on, and, in a way, it coats your throat, so each next shot is even smoother than the previous one.
Also check: 20 Best Tequilas in Mexico
Which Tequila Is Better for Shots?
Shots generally require a tequila Blanco because of the sharpness and intensity of the burn and is therefore preceded by salt and followed by a lemon or lime wedge to prepare the palate and to tone down the burn.
However, there are tequilas from the reposado and añejo categories that are suitable for shots, though the flavor of these tequilas is so smooth that it is better to sip them slowly.
The Casamigos Blanco, El Jimador Blanco, and the Patron Silver are among the best tequilas for shots. They are all flavorful, fruity, and smooth, with a well-balanced burn, but intense nevertheless.
Is Gold or Silver Tequila Better for Shots?
It ultimately boils down to what you prefer, as both gold and silver tequila have their strong and weak sides when it comes to doing shots. Some people like their shots strong, hot, and intense, with a spicy burn, in which case, the silver tequila should be their choice.
If you like smoother and a tad smoky flavor with a hot burn and long finish, you should definitely go for the gold tequila. However, on a larger scale, the gold tequila has a wider audience precisely because of its smoothness and smoky flavor.
As a rule, the darker the tequila, the longer it has aged, and the longer it has aged, the smoother it is. Therefore, it is this smoothness that is most popular among the tequila-shot lovers.
Is White or Brown Tequila Better for Shots?
White tequila or tequila Blanco is intended explicitly for shots. It doesn’t age for long, of at all, and it is fruity, sweet, and flavorful but more aggressive and sharper than the rest of the tequila categories- reposado, añejo, and extra añejo.
Even though some prefer aged tequila for shots, the tequila Blanco is the one known as the better option. It burns and stings and is often spicy and peppery in the end, creating a burn that is stronger than the other tequila categories.
The tequila Blanco is more popular among the younger and less experienced tequila drinkers, as doing shots is more of a young men’s game. The well-seasoned tequila enthusiasts prefer slow sipping tequila.
What Tequila Goes Down Smooth?
The extra añejo tequila is the smoothest one of all. Aged for at least three years, and often much longer than that, this tequila slides down the throat, leaving a velvety sensation.
This is a very potent but gentle tequila, and depending on where it has aged, it absorbs the flavors that have previously been in the barrel.
Most commonly, the extra añejo tequilas age in oak barrels previously used for bourbon or wine, and the taste rubs off of the spirit, making it incredibly rich and smooth. It usually has a nutty and buttery flavor, with strong vanilla and fruity notes.
The extra añejo tequila is reserved for slow sipping, though it isn’t forbidden to do shots with it. However, the exceptional richness of this tequila deserves to be fully appreciated and explored in detail, which is something you won’t be able to do with a shot.