Tequila, it’s not just for breakfast anymore.
Ideas for lunch and dinner can be found at the valley’s inaugural Tequila Fest being held at the US Airways Center on Dec. 12.
The festival is being promoted by Elias Entertainment Group, a business founded in 1991 by two brothers, Juan and Francisco Elias.
The event has had three previous “hugely successful” years in Las Vegas, according to Laura Schairer, the publicist for the festival.
“After three years in Vegas, the brothers decided to bring it to their hometown of Phoenix with the hopes of making it an annual event,” Schairer said.
“Elias Entertainment is the most prominent Latin concert promoter in Arizona,” said Juan Carlos Elias, director of Special Events and the son of Juan Elias.
“Our signature events are the Christmas Mariachi Festival, Las Vegas Mariachi Festival, Las Vegas Tequila Fest, and now we are bringing a new event to Arizona (titled) the Phoenix Tequila Fest.”
Schairer said the festival will include live music with a Mexican theme intended to evoke the spirit of Mexico and embody their heritage.
She calls it a high energy event with continuous live entertainment, appealing to a wide array of people.
Food and beverage industry professionals also will be present, introducing attendees to tequila brands they may not have been familiar with otherwise.
The event exposes the available market of the fastest growing spirit in the United States by providing participants with access to dozens of tequila makers from which they can sample.
Schairer said there will be numerous types of tequila available including premium and ultra-premium tequilas.
“Like the shampoo aisle at the grocery store, there is something for every type,” Schairer said of the selection.
Participants can learn about all things agave, including recipes for tequila ice cream and cuisines centered on tequila-infusions.
There will be a sister event to the fest, a Mariachi festival also taking place at the US Airways Center.
This is the 18th Annual Christmas Mariachi Festival and the event plays a large role in the local community.
“The longevity of our annual events has to do with our ability to present quality performances,” said Juan Carlos Elias.”My father and uncle strive to build great business relationships that center around honesty and trust. In my opinion, that is very hard to come by especially since we all hear so many horror stories about the entertainment industry.”
The Elias brothers are also involved in an annual toy drive that benefits underprivileged children in Sonora, Mexico.
The company has presented artists such as Juan Gabriel, Mana, and Juanes to their audiences, superstars in the Hispanic community and worldwide.
Overall, the event is centered on creating an elegant surrounding and festive atmosphere for all in attendance.
It is a place where tequila aficionados and novice alike can come together and see the latest in the ever-expanding tequila market.
The Tequila Fest is a light rail event and those attending can ride the “Tequila Express” for free with a ticket stub.
The fest will be held on Dec. 12-13 from noon to 5 p.m. on Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
It is a 21 and older event, tickets are $50 at the door and $35 in advance.
They can be bought online at www.phoenixtequilafest.com and Ticketmaster.