Fans of tequila and mezcal, start loading up on salt and lemon. The biggest agave conference ever held in the Southern Hemisphere is about to be held in Sydney this March, the brainchild of Phillip Bayly, owner of Sydney's now-closed tequila institution, Café Pacifico. Held over March 22 and 23 in Darlinghurst, Agave Love is a colossal, two-day conference and networking event for bartenders, growers, producers and all-round agave enthusiasts.
In a flurry of masterclasses, mixology sessions, talks, tasting sessions and tequila parties, Agave Love is one epic attempt to raise celebratory spirits like tequila to a higher shelf than shitty hens parties. Some of Sydney's best watering holes are to act as conference 'venues' for AL: The Cliff Dive, Shady Pines, The Winery, Hello Sailor, Casoni, Low 302 and Mr Moustache in Bondi. The team are expecting over 2000 people to attend, from bar owners to liquor industry reps and us lowly tequila-lovin' plebs.
If you're after information on the day, the whole thing is set to hinge around a festival info hub dubbed 'Agave Central', stationed inside the National Art School from noon to 5.30pm on Sunday, March 22. If you're one for free samples, inside the hub you'll be able to sample and trade (yep, trade) over sixty tequilas and mezcals. There's also going to be a 'Margarita Brunch' with two official tequila ambassadors. Sure, everyone's going to be there for 'research' reasons.
"The idea for Agave Love is to educate and recognise the rich cultural history of the agave spirits including the denomination of origin — tequila, mezcal and including other spirits like raicilla and sotol," says Bayly. "Agave Love is an opportunity to spread my love and passion for all things agave, a plant that dates back some 12 million years and has a history as an alcoholic beverage that dates back to Pre Columbian times.
“This is about category not brand, with a focus on educating lovers of agave spirits and introducing it to people who have either never tried it or have had bad experiences, usually with ‘false’ or cheap versions of these unique spirits."
Agave Love runs March 22 to 23 in Darlinghurst. For more info, head over here.