How the Gringos Stole Tequila: The Modern Age of Mexico's Most Traditional Spirit


Product Details

$18.95  $17.43
Trinity University Press
Publish Date
6.0 X 0.8 X 9.0 inches | 0.85 pounds
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About the Author

A Montreal native based in New York, Chantal Martineau writes about wine, spirits, food, travel, and culture. Her work has appeared in Vogue, Food and Wine, Saveur, Surface, Departures, the Atlantic, Financial Times, and more. She is the coauthor, with Ron Cooper, of Finding Mezcal: A Journey into the Liquid Soul of Mexico. She lives in the Hudson Valley.


"A phenomenal book -- probably one of the smartest books about a spirit I've ever read." -- Toronto Star

"A rich story . . . engaging." -- Wall Street Journal

"A lively exploration of the heritage, culture, practices and politics that shape Mexico's most famous export. Martineau introduces producers using traditional agricultural and distillation methods, shows readers why they're worth preserving, and outlines the challenges facing anyone concerned with the quality and sustainability of tequila, mezcal and other agave spirits." -- Kansas City Star

"Martineau journeys through Mexico interviewing producers of the agave-based spirits tequila and mescal. She's dismayed that international beverage distributors now design and market Mexico's signature alcoholic drinks and that techniques of mass production too often sacrifice integrity and authenticity." -- Foreign Affairs

"Martineau argues convincingly that good tequila resembles wine more than it does its fellow liquors. She writes of agave plantations as if they are vineyards, with variations in climate, slope, soil, and moisture resulting in variations in the plants that are, in turn, discernible in the distilled product. She co-opts the precious French word terroir and applies it to her subject with no intended loss of dignity." -- Los Angeles Review of Books"A deep dive into tequila production, but also an artfully written social history of the spirit and a primer of its impact on Mexico's economy."-- Texas Observer