Stay Connected
What We're Drinking


Saber Madness at K&L!

We have been chopping off the tops of Champagne bottles as fast as we can drink them- who needs a stopper when you are ready to commit to finishing the bottle! One of our favorites was this magnum ($84.99) of Franck Bonville Brut Rosé that Mellyn expertly decapitated on Christmas Eve. It also comes in regular 750ml ($39.99) and half bottles ($21.99). Olivier Bonville adds 8% Pinot Noir Rouge from Ambonnay superstar Paul Dethune to his top class assembelage of grand cru, estate Chardonnay to create this fabulous rose. This is one of the most elegant, bright, refreshing rose Champagnes that we carry, yet it does not lack red cherry Pinot Noir authority. We can’t get enough- bring another to the block!

Recent Videos

Tasting with Oliver Krug

Upcoming Events

We host regular weekly and Saturday wine tastings in each K&L location.

For the complete calendar, including lineups and additional details related to our events, visit our K&L Local Events on or follow us on Facebook.  


Free Spirits Tastings at K&L! Now that we have our license for spirits tastings in Redwood City and San Francisco, we’re excited to host regular free spirits tastings in those locations.  Check the Spirits Journal for an updated tasting schedule.

All tastings will feature different products from the Spirits Department and take place on Wednesdays in Redwood City and San Francisco. Visit our events page on Facebook or the K&L Spirits Journal for more information.

>>Upcoming Special Events, Dinners, and Tastings

See all K&L Local Events

« Wine Wednesday: 2007 Unti Vineyards Dry Creek Grenache | Main | Cheese Happens »

Can You Pair Tequila With Food?

When the Spanish Conquistadors came to Jalisco, Mexico, they experienced a bit of gastronomic culture shock. In a letter back to the Spanish king, Nuño de Guzmán, a particularly ferocious conquistador, wrote, "This land has no bread nor wine nor oil, vingar or cattle." They may not have had wine from grapes, but the indigenous people did have a fermented beverage from the nectar of the agave. When this pulque-like drink met the Moorish invention of the pot still, Tequila (and history) were made.

With a fabulous beverage in hand and no wine, what else do you do, but create a cuisine that goes well with Tequila? After all, most of modern Mexican cuisine is a fusion of "Old World" and "New World" ingredients and cooking techniques. A dinner at Tres Agaves featuring the awsome Fortaleza Tequilas was a great testing ground for my theory.

Tequila Fortaleza is a fantastic distillery headed by the passionate and charismatic Guillermo Sauza, a fifth generation taquilero in the heartland of Jalisco. Yes, his family is the Sauza family, but his grandfather sold their brand in the late 1970s. The family does, however, still own the Fortaleza distillery in the town of Tequila and a beautiful hacienda nearby. From the brick ovens to the old stone mill, everything here is done the old-fashioned way. This artisanal Tequila, with its complex and deep flavors, is a great foil for food.

As we sat down for dinner, all three of the Fortaleza Tequilas were poured in glasses in front of us. I tasted through everything first:

Tequila Fortaleza Blanco ($46.99) The Blanco is the true expression of the beautiful blue agave. Bottled after distillation and adjustment to 40% alcohol, it has bright citrus and pear aromas and a full body on the palate. The long peppery finish on the palate lasts and lasts.

Tequila Fortaleza Reposado ($55.99) The Reposado is aged in used Bourbon barrels for 6-9 months. Aromas of pear, golden beets and vanillin oak are followed by a round, plush palate feel. Green peppercorn and a bit of heat lift the rich flavors of this repo.

Tequila Fortaleza Añejo ($81.99) Aged for 32 months in used Bourbon barrels, this is a powerful Tequila. All the wood complements the earthy rich aromas of cooked agave. The elegance of the aromas and the palate is followed by enough earth and fire on the finish to remind you that this was Tequila!

Now I know what you're thinking. Okay, Anne, tasting notes are great, but does it go with food?

The beautiful part of having all three styles already in front of me was that I got to compare and contrast as the dinner went on. We began with a selection of antojitos or appetizers. The albondigas de camarones or shrimp dumplings in a roasted tomato sauce went beautifully with the Blanco. The citrus notes did really well with the shrimp while the wood of the other two tequilas was overpowering. From there we moved to a puerco in salsa verde served with coconut rice. The Blanco showed well as a contrast to the richness of the dish, and the Reposado was also a great compliment. The Añejo was still a bit too big. From there we moved to Xolostle, a regional classic made of chicken that is slow cooked in a red chili sauce. I loved the Reposado with this dish. The peppery finish matched up well with the cascalbel chilis. Finally, our entrée was cola de res en salsa negra, oxtails that were braised in a dark chili sauce and served with elote and lime rice. Oh my! The Añejo had found a friend with this dish. The full flavors married beautifully with the fiery earthiness of the spirit.

At the end of the night, I was a convert. Artisanal Tequilas like the Fortaleza have a complexity to them that makes them a fabulous foil for more than chips and guacamole. Try some at a dinner in your hacienda!

Anne Pickett

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
All HTML will be escaped. Hyperlinks will be created for URLs automatically.