I was in my image archive today, looking for something totally unrelated to tequila when I spotted a picture of our tequila collection taken in July 2008, right after we moved into our current apartment.

I didn’t actually realize how different it looks today – and how much money we must be spending on this stuff. Our collection is constantly growing, and when we get down to the bottom of a bottle, we tend to hold off on drinking any more of it because we don’t want to be “out” of anything.

Here’s what the collection looked like then:

Our tequila collection, July 2008

Our tequila collection, July 2008

Contents: (from left to right) Don Julio Real, Gran Centenario Añejo, Partida Elegante, Don Julio 1942, El Diamonte de Cielo Añejo, Fortaleza Añejo, Cazadores Añejo, Herencia Mexicana Extra Añejo, Cazadores Reposado, Don Julio Añejo. (And a lone bottle of Bombay Sapphire, which doesn’t count because it’s not a tequila.)

And here’s what it looks like today (I took the picture about 10 minutes ago.):

Our tequila collection as it appears today (March 2009)

Our tequila collection as it appears today (March 2009)

Contents (from left to right): Herradura Seleccion Suprema, Partida Elegante, Don Julio Real, Gran Centenario Reserva del Tequilero, Don Julio 1942, Partida Añejo, Oro Azul Añejo, Fortaleza Añejo, Gran Centenario Añejo, Herencia Mexicana Extra Añejo, Cazadores Reposado, Cazadores Añejo, Dos Lunas Añejo, Gran Centenario Leyenda, El Diamonte del Cielo, El Mayor Añejo, Don Julio Añejo, 1800 Añejo, Centinela Añejo, Lapis Añejo, 1800 Reposado, Stallion Añejo.

Unlike some people, we actually drink all of this stuff – even the crazy expensive stuff. Hey, life is short, drink well!

When we have guests visiting, it is common for them to look at the collection, and then ask us which one is our favorite. That is a really difficult question to answer, like choosing which of your children is your favorite.

Obviously, the really good stuff is expensive for a reason… Herradura Seleccion Suprema, Partida Elegante, and Gran Centenario Leyenda are absolutely amazing and worth every penny. But, the practical side of us says to go easy on that stuff.

The regular workhorse of our collection is Don Julio 1942. It’s a mid-range añejo tequila and you can find bottles of it for about $100. It’s not so expensive that our practical side kicks and holds us back a bit, and it’s not too cheap that it doesn’t feel like a special treat each time we drink it. It’s a super smooth tequila with a very vanilla aroma and taste. You just cannot go wrong with a bottle of DJ 1942.

If you’re ever with someone who refuses to drink tequila because of some horrible Cuervo college flashback, you can bring them back into the fold with a bottle of 1942.

We will drink Gran Centenario Añejo and Cazadores Añejo very often. It is priced right (at about $60/bottle and $40/bottle, respectively) for continuous consumption, yet is still smooth and nice.

Cazadores Reposado is our “mixer” tequila. We will make Palomas and Margaritas with it. Most of the time, this is like an insult to a tequila – but we’re not interested in putting just any tequila into our bloodstream, and the Cazadores Reposado tastes great on its own as well.

We’re running low on the DJ 1942, though, which has me a little nervous at this point. I will need to fix this asap.

— Grover