Welcome to the Haute Tequila Bar
El Toro Blanco pairs the world’s best tequila with high-brow Mexican food.
By Josh Baron
El Toro Blanco, the latest establishment from the team behind Soho’s B&B Winepub and Lure Fishbar, bets on a trifecta of 100-plus tequila selections, a pan-Mexican menu that sees traditional dishes executed with the same panache as fancier ones, and a fashionable ambience that feels like a Mexico City design hotel. “We’re striving to be the best,” says Andrew Gwyther, who came over from Fishbar, where he had his nose more in wine than liquor, to develop what he calls El Toro Blanco’s “tequila program.” His objective: to turn customers on to surprisingly complex, small-production tequilas. “You have vintages, regions, and single estates,” he says, explaining tequila’s similarities to fine wine. “Increasingly, people want to know more about where their product is coming from.” The best place to get schooled in tequila is at the 10-seat bar at the front of the restaurant, where you can gaze upon the vast selection of bottles. Gwyther took us through a six-course pairing of food and tequila.