J.W. Marriott’s Bar Program Puts Focus on Tequila, Mezcal

from Austin 360

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The recently opened J.W. Marriott hadn’t even been in business and accepting guests for a full month when it took the top spot on the monthly list of Austin’s biggest alcohol sellers in February.

No word yet on where the downtown hotel places on the list for last month, but chances are, with South by Southwest in addition to its regular business, the J.W. Marriott has been moving through a lot of bottles of booze ever since.

Part of the reason it’s become such a boozy stronghold for both Austinites and tourists alike is that it’s a shiny new place with a trio of dining options — the hotel has a walk-up window Burger Bar, Italian-centric Osteria Pronto and the Texas-inspired outdoor spot Corner Bar — and it’s in an ideal location at Second Street and Congress Avenue.

But that explanation doesn’t quite give the J.W. Marriott bar program and staff enough credit. The bartenders (among them Carley Dunavant, one of the key players who helped to make Austin’s bar scene as good as it is today) have worked hard to ensure the J.W. Marriott can compete with some of Austin’s best cocktail meccas, bringing a special focus to the bar with a pair of spirits especially beloved by Corner bar general manager Brian Jaymont: tequila and the Mexican spirit’s more rustic cousin, mezcal.

Here, Jaymont offers a few of his favorite tequila and mezcal brands on the market today — all available at the hotel, located at 110 E. Second St., of course.

  • Qui Tequila: Although this extra añejo has been aged for more than three and a half years in a mix of white oak barrels that formerly aged American whiskey and French Bordeaux, it doesn’t exactly look the part of a matured spirit. It’s clear as a blanco tequila because after its time in barrels, it’s further distilled, Jaymont said, “to make it approachable” while still retaining its agave kick and butterscotch notes from the barrels.

Original article .