29 Jul
One Tequila, Two Tequila, Three Tequila, Floor

I think someone in the state of Jalisco is trying to reach out to me. For some strange reason I took another way to work this morning and drove by one of my favorite bars, El Carmen (8138 W. 3rd Street, LA, CA 90048, 323.852.1552). If you live in the Hollywood area you probably know this place—it’s the undisputed king of tequila bars. Seriously, if you like your Mexican nectar this is the joint. Behind that thick red curtain hanging over the outside door you’ll pretty much find every brand of tequila in the world—there are over 500 to choose from. From Tijuana tequila-popping $7 bucks a shot all the way up to the goods that’ll give your daddy’s bottle of Louis XIII cognac a run for the money—think $100s of dollars per shot. They’ve got you covered. Walking in reminds you of some classic Mexican movie with dim red lighting, black velvet paintings, Mexican wrestler masks on the walls, a big bull’s head, tasty tacos and a great jukebox.

Continue reading and more pictures after the jump….

An oil painting of the legendary wrestler Tito “The Mad Poet” La Brea, who they named La Brea Avenue in Los Angeles after. He also happens to be the El Sante Patron, or “Patron Saint”, of El Carmen…

It’s even a great spot to take your girl… their homemade pineapple-infused tequila is pretty tasty and doesn’t require an Agave loving palate to enjoy. It’s been a minute since I’ve nestled up to their bar…it took me all of 30 seconds to decide where I’ll be after work today. Salute El Carmen — I’ll see ya in about 10 hours.

Then when I walked in my office this morning, with El Carmen and tequila on the brain, I’m greeted to a bottle of 1800 sitting on my desk. See, someone from Jalisco really is trying to get in touch with me—you can’t ignore the signs, people. So I took a shot and I must say it’s a damn fine sip. The reason for the bottle? Seems 1800 is launching an international campaign and have rounded up nine artists to design limited edition bottles. The artists include Jorge Alderete (Mexico City), Jeremy Bacharach (Chicago), Glenn Barr (Detroit), Will Chambers (Chicago), Chris Dean (Detroit), Kim Dosa (Atlanta), Josh Ellingson (Oakland), Hannah Stouffer (Oakland) and Urban Medium (Atlanta). Only 1,800 bottles have been produced with each design and they will be available for $34.99 at high-end liquor stores. The designs will also be used as part of an $8 million outdoor advertising and promotional campaign across the country. In addition to the “Essential Artists” campaign, they’re also giving up-and-coming artists the chance to showcase their visions by letting people like you and me design their own bottle and enter a competition to be selected for the 2009 billboard campaign. I have no talent in that department, so I’m out.

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