If you could don a moustache and the look of a seasoned tequila drinker to convince a casting agent that you are the new face of Jose Cuervo tequila, would you do it? Maybe, but you’d probably need a bit more convincing that it’s worth your while. What if I told you that as Jose Cuervo’s Tequila Face you and a group of your bestest amigos/amigas would be whizzed off to Mexico for an all-expenses paid holiday of a lifetime? You’d even star in Jose Cuervo’s new film. Would you do it then? If margaritas and a good, chocolatey mole are your kind of thing, then I think the chances of a positive answer would increase manifold.
The chances of Epicurienne becoming Jose Cuervo’s Tequila Face are slim to nil, in spite of recent efforts at a Tequila Face event. I joined the Jose Cuervo gang at Cargo in London’s Shoreditch, where the guests were greeted with large white envelopes. Inside each pack was our new identity for the evening, along with a couple of key accessories to help us get into the Tequila Face mood. My new persona? Veronica de Sanchez.
My accessories? A beret and a pair of aviator sunglasses which were adopted so fast that I could have been Speedy Gonzales after his sixth double espresso. Taking a glass of margarita, I quickly decided that my alter ego has been drinking tequila since her grandfather first slipped some into her bottle when she was six months old. Apart from that, my identity brief told me that I was ‘One of Mexico’s hottest actors’, but fellow party-goer, Lolly a.k.a. Juanita, thought Veronica looked French. Apparently, Veronica is famous Mexico-wide for faking her own death in a soap called ‘Love in the Sky’, or ‘El amor en el cielo’. The soap is set in an airport. I love airports, so the creators of my new self certainly got that part right. I only wonder how she died. Was she caught in a propeller? Poisoned by in-flight food? Run over by a speeding baggage trolley? The intrigue grew and from behind the aviator sunnies my new theme song became: ‘I wear my sunglasses at night’.
With the help of some old buddies from Mexico – Zorondo, Juanita and Guillermo, now sporting wrestler masks and headphones and faux moustaches, we had a blast. And who wouldn’t with friends like these? Zorondo is the music-producing pioneer of the Mexican dance scene with an unhealthy obsession with Michael Jackson, although for this outing he thankfully left his spangly glove (singular) at home. Juanita is a DJ cum soap star bombshell who appears in La Fea Mas Bella – we swap make-up artists to keep our looks fresh. Meanwhile, mask-wearing Guillermo is a retired wrestling champ who keeps a clean-shaven chest for those plunging necklines he wears with brazen aplomb whilst practising his other favourite sport – ballroom dancing. So far, this was a seriously fun event.
(Veronica in borrowed ‘tache, taken by Juanita on her i-Phone)
Once dressed up, part of the deal was to sit on the casting couch with Jose Cuervo’s casting agent, Vince Frank, to have our ‘casting’ filmed. Suffice to say that Vince didn’t seem to like me very much. Gone was the soft-centred foodie; I was now a diva with attitude and a big, fat pout, in spite of the fact that the botox was wearing off. Veronica was taking this alter ego stuff very seriously and her (faux-Mexican) accent was getting stronger with each sip of margarita. Pity The Poor Vince. Was I Epicurienne? Or was I Veronica? It was becoming hard to tell.
Casting aside, there were tequila-based cocktails to try and Mexican hors d’oeuvres to nibble. Mention margaritas and I’m there with bells on so I was a happy little starlet to find that the Jose Cuervo margaritas did not disappoint. On the food front, one kind waiter fed me extra skewers of teriyaki chicken because it was oh-so-lipsmackingly tenderlicious that I couldn’t stop saying so. Perhaps he was just pleased to lighten his load on the tray, but my tastebuds were not complaining.
On the food front, prepare to drool because here’s what we enjoyed throughout the evening:
- Tangy tomato salsa and guacamole with taco chips
- Marinated olives with rosemary, lemon and garlic
- King prawns, jalapeno, red onion with coriander and lime
- Seared tuna with salsa verde served on a chic black ceramic spoon
- Tequila-marinated salmon ceviche – so succulent!
- Chicken teriyaki on skewers – melted in the mouth
- Thai beef salad, mint, soy and red pepper in a filo cup
- Torillia cigars, refried beans, cheddar, harrisa and coriander
- Chorizo and butter bean hot pot served in a crystal espresso glass – Mexican with elegance.
There were also three cocktails to choose from, all made with Jose Cuervo tequila, and in spite of the fact that they all looked divine, I stuck firmly to the margaritas. Deeeee-lish.
- Cuervo Classic Margarita: Jose Cuervo Especial Tequila, shaken with fresh lime juice and Triple Sec, served straight up in a salt-rimmed glass
- Cuervo Diablo Flower: JCE Tequila appears again, this time shaken with fresh lemon juice, pasteurized egg white, Vya dry vermouth, creme de cassis and a touch of lavender eau de vie
- Cuervo Maracuya & Apple Punch: More tequila, this time shaken with pressed apple juice, fresh passion fruit and Noilly Prat Rouge vermouth, sweetened with agave nectar and served long over ice. Finished with a float or cherry liqueur, these cocktails were as pretty as coconut ice in a glass, but even so I did not desert my beloved margaritas.
If all of the above isn’t excitement enough, we also had wrestlers to entertain us by slam dunking each other and some of the braver guests among us (not me!) WWF-style. Surreal or what?
Luckily, there was a photographer there to capture all the fun.
(Veronica with Zorondo, Juanita and Guillermo, and Splendid Organiser, Splendid Chris)
At the end of the evening, which was sensibly not too late, we were all presented with very generous goodie bags, including enough tequila to keep Veronica de Sanchez happy for a good while longer, more aviator specs in case Veronica breaks hers on set for her latest flick, ‘Tequila Mockingbird’, and a Tequila Face t-shirt, so that even if we don’t win The Big Prize, we can still pretend that we did.
So, my little chicos and chicas! If you want to enter the Jose Cuervo Tequila Face competition, you may. Just click here to visit Vince Frank’s Tequila Face casting room to find out what to do. Hint: a big moustache works wonders and a sombrero may not go astray.
You can follow Vince Frank on Facebook or tweet him sweet tequila on Twitter: twitter.com/VinceFrank, but be warned, he can be harsh. He recently told Veronica to get herself an appointment in Harley Street. Why? The pout needs more botox, apparently, and Diva Vonnie doesn’t need to be told twice. Andale! Andale! Arriba! Arriba! And she’s off…