Birthplace of Tequila.
A 34,658 ha site, between the foothills of the Tequila Volcano and the deep valley of the Rio Grande River, is part of an expansive landscape of blue agave, shaped by the culture of the plant which has been used since the 16th century to produce tequila spirit and over at least 2,000 years to make fermented drinks and cloth. Within the landscape are working distilleries reflecting the growth in the international consumption of tequila in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today, the agave culture is seen as part of national identity. The area encloses a living, working landscape of blue agave fields and the urban settlements of Tequila, Arenal, and Amatitan with large distilleries where the agave ‘pineapple' is fermented and distilled. The listed property includes fields, distilleries and factories (both active and not), tabernas (distilleries that were illegal under Spanish rule), towns and Teuchitlan archaeological sites. The property numbers numerous haciendas, or estates, some of which date back to the 18th century. The architecture of both factories and haciendas is characterized by brick and adobe construction, plastered walls with ochre lime-wash, stone arches, quoins and window dressings, and formal, neo-classical or baroque ornamentation. It reflects both the fusion of pre-Hispanic traditions of fermenting mescal juice with the European distillation processes and of local technologies and those imported from Europe and the U.S.A. The property also covers archaeological sites which bear testimony to the Teuchitlan culture which shaped the Tequila area from 200 to 900 A.D., notably through the creation of terraces for agriculture, housing, temples, ceremonial mounds and ball courts.