Low Methanol Tequila No Hangover by Brady Bunte

Low Methanol Tequila No Hangover Brady Bunte

Tequila is for most people a fun drink to enjoy in groups. Tequila shots are a party favorite, but more often than not, people end up waking the next day with a wicked hangover. Tequila connoisseurs, like Brady Bunte, attribute this problem to the poor quality of tequila that is drunk. Whether you are drinking the tequila neat, as a shot or in margaritas, the quality of the product will strongly influence your ability to enjoy the flavors and physical side effects.

Methanol is a common congener of any alcoholic drink that is made through fermentation. According to Brady Bunte, congeners help add flavor and aroma to distilled drinks. Methanol adds sweetness to tequila, but also has a dark side. When methanol is broken down in the body, metabolites are produced that can build up to toxic levels. Some of the metabolites that can result include formaldehyde and formic acid. Methanol poisoning occurs when an alcohol with a high concentration of methanol is ingested.

Brady Bunte points to the many instances of home-distilled brews gone awry, where drinkers are reported to have gone blind or died. Consuming as little as 25-90 ml of methanol can be fatal without proper medical attention. In less severe circumstances, consuming drinks with small amounts of methanol can result in gastric distress, vomiting and headaches. Brady Bunte has also observed that those with sensitivity to migraines are likely to trigger an attack when they consume the same drinks.

Headaches and migraines are a particularly common side effect from consuming cheap brands of alcoholic drinks that often have up to 2% of their volume made up of methanol. Experienced drinkers know that clear drinks like vodka and white wine are less likely to give you a hangover than darker drinks like whisky, beer and red wine. Tequila, which has clear varieties, is an exception to this rule, as it is known to have high levels of congeners.

Experts in the tequila industry suggest that this problem is more common with cheap popular brands of tequila, especially mixtos. Tres Sietes Tequila will not cause such a problem as they undergo a sophisticated distillation process that ensures minimal presence of congeners and other impurities in the end product. Although on the higher end of the price spectrum, it is worth noting that with tequila, you get what you pay for.

Tres Sietes tequila production involves the extraction of juices using a steaming diffuser process that guarantees cleaner results. Brady Bunte has found that most other distilleries make use of traditional techniques that involve heating kilns with burning wood. These traditional processes often lead to the higher concentration of methanol and other toxic substances in the resulting tequila. Brady Bunte believes that the care taken in the preliminary stages of production are what ensure that Tres Sietes offers the lowest level of methanol amongst tequilas currently available in the market.

This low methanol concentration means that premium brands like Tres Sietes are the best solution for tequila lovers who tend to experience hangovers when enjoying their favorite alcohol. The purity of the tequila also means there is easier detection of the distinct flavors, aromas and aftertaste of the liquid on the palate and other senses. Brady Bunte considers this particularly important for those who are traditionalists and prefer to imbibe tequila neat.

Some industry critics suggest that repeated distillations and the use of diffuser technology tends to dilute the taste of the tequila. Like many other successful tequila makers, Brady Bunte however feels that it is not so much the number of times the drink is distilled that will determine its flavor, but rather the proprietary techniques applied during the distillation process that will ensure the best is brought out of the liquid.

The Amazing Edible Nature of the Agave

brady bunte Amazing Edible Nature of Agave
The agave plant is the primary raw material to the tequila making process. According to Brady Bunte, this plant has however proven more versatile in terms of being a food source than many would imagine. There are over 200 species of agave plant to be found around the world, with agave tequilana being the specific variety grown in Mexico for distilling tequila.

When considering which agave plants can be used for food, it is important to first identify the species. Brady Bunte recommends focusing on spine arrangement, length and shape of the plant to help identify the variety using online resources. Some species that have proven to have edible parts include tequilana, deserti, palmeri, sisalana, and scabra.

Brady Bunte also advises that when considering a plant to try out as a food source, older is better. The level of carbohydrates and sugars in the plant tends to increase with age, making older agave more delicious. Given that the plant can take up to 10 years to mature, it is best to seek out larger and tougher choices that are likely older.

Agave plants typically have three edible parts, the flowers, stalks and sap. Brady Bunte confirms that the leaves are not often edible, but can be chewed on when cooked and the fibers spat out. Many indigenous tribes in parts of Mexico that have for centuries made use of the agave plant as a food source, have learnt what time of year to harvest the varied parts of specific species of agave.

Brady Bunte has found that in summer, agaves often produce large amounts of flowers, which can be boiled and roasted. Natives of the Tehuacan region in Mexico often used the boiled flowers as an ingredient added to scrambled eggs. The flower nectar can also be used to make sauces and agave sugar. Brady Bunte has ascertained that this sugar is very high in fructose, and sweeter than honey or ordinary sugar. Less of the agave sugar can be used in cooking than compared with other sweeteners, with the same result. When bottled, it possesses a shelf life of up to two years.

The stalks of the agave plant can be harvested before they blossom in summer and roasted. The results have a sweet, almost molasses type taste. When you take out the stalk, a well is created at the bottom where sap collects. This sap can be used to make tequila.

For species of agave whose leaves are edible, there is plenty of sap to be found in the leaves during winter and spring. Brady Bunte believes that the leaves can be roasted and the chewed on to enjoy the sweet taste, without swallowing the fibers. Alternatively, one can boil the leaves and resulting juice consumed as a soup. If you are unsure as to the palatability of the leaves, boil them and taste the juice. Discard if caustic.

Another way Brady Bunte has established that indigenous tribes ate the plant was by, after talking out the stalk to eat, peeling off the leaves and pit baking the plant. They would dig a hole, line it with bricks, light a fire and once the flames dies down, put in the plant and cover the hole to keep in the heat. After a day of slow cooking, the plant would be ready to eat. This kind of task would have been difficult for just one person to undertake given the huge size of older plants.

Brady Bunte issues a word of caution for anyone who intends trying to use the agave plant for food. Careful handling of the plant is necessary, especially the roots, where contact with the sap can easily cause dermatitis. Also, be careful of the sharp points of the leaves, which can cause blood vessels to rupture and serious bruising if they pierce the skin.