Tequila as Aphrodisiac

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Agave schnapps
Many in Mexico say that tequila is erotic and is the strongest aphrodisiac of all the schnapps: "if drinking alcohol," it is said there, "then drink tequila!"

The national drink of Mexico, tequila is schnapps with 40 percent alcohol content. Like mescal, it is distilled out of agave ferments. The self-fermenting agave juice was a known aphrodisiac in pre-Spanish times, and its reputation has continued all the way to the present (Ratsch 1998, 43ff8).

The ancient Aztecs used the agave, which they named metl, in many ways out of its fermented (but not distilled) juices they created pulque, the thousand-year-old ancestor of tequila. "Metl was considered by the Aztecs a gift of the gods, and they used pulque for their blood" (Kretschmer 1999, 18). They ascribed healing powers to the drink and treasured its hallucinogenic and relaxing effects. It was mainly used ritually by priests, and well as by nobles and those who were ill.

High-quality tequila is distilled out of the sweet, self-fermenting juice (aguamiel, pulque, metl) of the pina(cones) or cabeza (resin) of the agave heart; poorer quality tequila is made out of the cooked and mashed leaves. The very best quality is prepared out of blue agave (Agave tequilana cv. azul) variety; white and "golden" tequila come out of this with the latter taking longer to mature.

Tequila has been praised in many Mexican poems and songs that are mostly salacious and full of erotic innuendo (Artes de Mexico 1984). Like mescal, tequila is often and gladly brought out in connection with amor. For example, there are variations on a legend dealing with the love of a barkeep for a woman named Margarita (the beloved cocktail of the same name was introduced in the 1930s or 1940s) that feature tequila.

One can drink tequila pure or mix it in an aphrodisiacal cocktail. There are countless tequila recipes, especially for variations on the aforementioned margarita (Walker and Walker 1994). Like damiana or hemp, tequila is also well-suited to herbal extraction.

Text: The Encyclopaedia of Aphrodisiacs: Psychoactive Substances For Use In Sexual Practices. Christian Ratsch and Claudia Muller-Ebeling, 2003.

Image: http://vrikshanurseries.blogspot.ca/2011/06/agave-tequila-plant.html