Silver Tequila vs Gold Tequila: What’s The Difference?

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Krishia Modified: August 8, 2022

Have you experienced having a conundrum choosing which between silver tequila vs gold tequila should you mix in your cocktail? Well, worry no more. We got you a breakdown of the differences between these two tequilas. Learning this will give you an idea of how to use them and hopefully help you create the best tequila cocktails and margaritas you and your friends can enjoy!

What Is the Difference Between Silver Tequila vs Gold Tequila?

an infographic showing the differences between silver vs gold tequila

Tequila is a spirit made of the blue agave plant that grows exclusively in specific areas of Mexico: the states of Jalisco, Guanajuato, Michoacan, Nayarit, and Tamaulipas. There are also five kinds of tequila, namely tequila blanco, joven, reposado, anejo, and extra anejo.

You are probably familiar with tequila shots that you usually drink at parties with some salt and lime. But you can also create cocktails using some tequila types, like this bloody maria recipe

Because of its color, some people usually classify tequila into two: silver and gold tequila. But what really are these two tequila types? Well, silver tequila is another name for tequila blanco. On the other hand, gold tequila’s other name is tequila joven. We listed their differences below to help you differentiate the two!

Appearance and Flavor Profile

Silver tequila and gold tequila shots  with citrus wedge and cinnamon sticks

Silver tequila and gold tequila shots

The easiest way to identify the two is through their color. Silver tequila has a clear color with a sweet yet strong agave flavor. On the other hand, gold tequila has a more amber, almost caramel-like color with creamy vanilla undernotes.

Silver tequila, also called blanco (a Spanish word that means “white”), got its name because of its clear, almost colorless appearance. It is considered the purest of all tequilas. That’s why you can definitely taste the strong and sweet flavor of agave with just a sip. It also has citrusy and peppery undernotes with a little kick of spice. With its flavor and color, it is definitely the perfect tequila to use in creating a ranch water cocktail.

On the other hand, gold tequila’s other name is joven (the Spanish word for “young”), a name that also best describes this tequila as it is a combination of blanco or silver tequila (an unaged tequila) and aged spirits like reposado and anejo. It is yellow or golden in color, which is why it is called tequila gold. It is sweet and sugary because of added additives with an underlying hint of cinnamon and vanilla.

READ ALSO: Reposado vs Anejo vs Blanco: Which Is The Best?

Ingredients

Though both are from the blue agave plant, gold tequila has additives and other spirits combined to achieve its flavor and color.

Silver tequila is mainly from fermented extracts of the blue agave plant, which is not the case in terms of gold tequila. Aside from mixing it with silver tequila and other aged spirits, gold tequila is also combined with caramel coloring (to achieve its color) and sweeteners like molasses, corn syrup, or different sugar types. 

Aging and Barrelling

different spirits with a barrel in the background 

Silver tequila undergoes little to no aging period, while producers make gold tequila by combining aged and unaged tequilas.

Silver tequila is usually bottled after its distillation process. However, some producers opt to age it in steel barrels for no longer than 60 days. 

On the other hand, the easiest way to make a gold tequila is by mixing tequila blanco with aged spirits like reposado (aged and barrelled for 60 days to a year using steel or oak barrels) or anejo (aged for one to three years in oak barrels). If you find a bottle labeled with 100% agave, producers created it by mixing silver tequila and aged spirits that are from pure agave extract.

Uses

gold tequila shots in shot glasses

Silver tequila is the best for mixed drinks like margaritas, while gold tequila is the best for shots.

Aside from the clear color of silver tequilas that makes it easier to combine with other drinks, its strong and sweet agave flavor also complements any margarita mix, like this Italian margarita recipe. 

Gold tequila, on the other hand, has a smoother taste compared to the acrid flavor of silver tequila. It is easier to take either straight or with some salt and lime juice. But if you want to make it more fun, try these fried tequila shots the next time you host a party with your friends. 

Tip

  • Compared to gold tequila, silver tequila contains fewer additives and congeners that help avoid dehydration, thus, minimizing hangovers. However, if you want to try other tequila types but are worried about having a hangover the next day, choose spirits that are 100% agave. 

Price

Gold tequila is more expensive than silver tequila. It is because gold tequila uses aged spirits that undergo a more rigorous process and flavoring than the basic and less aged silver tequila. 

You can get a bottle of silver tequila for around $20 to $50. An example is a Jose Cuervo Silver bottle with a price of approximately $19. You can use this in concocting a tequila sunrise drink if you wish! Another prominent name in the tequila game is Don Julio Blanco which has an average price of $48. Gold tequila, in contrast, ranges from $20 up to $300, with Casa Dragones Sipping Tequila Joven ($285) as an example. 


Try These Tequila Cocktail Recipes

golden margarita recipe

  • Cuervo Especial Tequila – If you are a fan of Jose Cuervo Tequila, you must try this cocktail recipe! The tarty and tangy flavors of cranberry and lemon complement the smoothness of Jose Cuervo’s golden tequila.
  • Golden Margarita Cocktail – Looking for quick booze to make? This golden margarita recipe is what you need! It’s a fun and refreshing cocktail drink you can serve at your party.
  • Topolo Margarita – With the fresh citrusy flavors of lime and oranges blended with some kick of silver tequila, this refreshing booze will definitely please your guests.
  • Cactus Pear Margarita – This is a sweet, citrusy, and definitely bright drink. Cactus pear margarita is a drink you can make the next time you host a pool party with your friends.

Silver vs Gold Tequila: Which is Better?

Silver or gold? Well, if you like a tequila that has the sweetness of agave with a little bit of spice, go with silver tequila. It is also cheaper and can go well with margaritas and other cocktail mixes.

But if you plan to have tequila shots as the highlight of your party, go with the sweet, cinnamony, and vanilla-filled flavors of gold tequila.

It really all boils down to your preference. But at the end of the day, always remember that there is no wrong choice of tequila when you are with great company.

Krishia

KC is a writer, an artist, a theatre enthusiast, and a food lover. She believes in the saying, “a jack of all trades is a master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one.” That is why she has myriads of interests—from photography, cooking, designing, journaling, and the list still goes on. She dreams of traveling the whole country on her own someday to satiate her eyes, her curiosity, and of course, her stomach.

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