Judge London’s best Tequila cocktails with el Jimador

With one of Mexico’s most important festivals just around the corner, el Jimador Tequila invites you to come and join the celebrations.

If you thought Tequila was about those throat-stripping shots you downed in your student days, then think again. True Tequila is a spirit to be savoured, whether sipped neat, served in a cocktail, or enjoyed in Mexico’s favourite long drink, the Paloma – a refreshing mix of Tequila, lime juice and soda.

And if you’re making Mexico’s favourite long drink, you need Mexico’s number-one Tequila: el Jimador. Crafted from a pure recipe of 100% blue agave, rather than a mix of different sugars, el Jimador is deliciously smooth and balanced. Named in honour of the jimadores – the skilled farmers charged with selecting only the finest agave plants for distillation – it’s a truly authentic Tequila, made using a process of natural fermentation and oak ageing to create a spirit with finesse and complexity of flavour.

Cocktail competition

This November, el Jimador is launching a cocktail competition to mark one of Mexico’s most ancient and vibrant festivals: The Day of the Dead. Dating back thousands of years, the annual Day of the Dead celebrations see departed relatives remembered with a festival full of colour, food and, of course, el Jimador Tequila.

And now you can join the party, too, by signing up as a judge in this unique competition, which will see eight of London’s top bars compete to serve the best el Jimador cocktail, alongside some classic Palomas.

Register as a special Square Meal judge and you will receive an el Jimador passport, entitling you to a free el Jimador cocktail at each of the competing venues. Visit and judge all eight in one month (1-30 November)and you could also be in with the chance of winning a special el Jimador gift.

You can sign up as a judge at squaremeal.co.uk/el-jimador-Tequila. But look lively! Places are limited, so don’t delay.

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The contenders

Barrio Central

This friendly cocktail bar and cantina is always buzzing and ready for fiesta. Serving up creative cocktails is Barrio’s forte, so el Jimador Paloma will be busting moves like Jagger at this funky joint.

Barrio East

Barrio will bring a bomba of a venue to Shoreditch this November with the opening of its third bar, featuring quirky interiors, delicioso cocktails, and DJs till dawn. 141-143 Shoreditch High Street, E1 6JE; 020 3230 1002; welovebarrio.com

Casita

The good times invariably flow at this tiny bar in Shoreditch where the makeshift style belies a team who, when it comes to el Jimador in particular, really know their stuff.

Floripa

‘Eat, drink, dance’ are the house rules at Floripa, whose flamboyant take on beach-shack chic is regularly the backdrop to live gigs and even livelier partying.

Duke’s Brew & Que

If your inner cowboy needs a night on the town, get down to the excellent Duke’s Brew & Que in Dalston where you can feast on fodder hot off the red-blooded BBQ, and a cocktail list strong on 100% agave.

Off Broadway

This New York-style cocktail bar boasts full Mexican credentials thanks to manager Byron, whose experience of growing up in a Mexican household ensures the bar snacks and el Jimador cocktails are as authentic as can be.

London Cocktail Club

Snuggle up on the red velvet banquettes in this cosy drinking den, where el Jimador surfaces in a variety of wildly creative drinks – whether you like your Paloma on the rocks or laced with squid ink is up to you…

Covent Garden Cocktail Club

Headed up by mixologist JJ Goodman, this basement cocktail bar remains a perennial industry fave thanks to a classic cocktail list and a masterly bartending team.

This feature was published in September 2012.