JW Marriott San Antonio Hill CountryThe name is quite a mouthful—JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa. And the resort is quite a place, offering something above and beyond other JW Marriotts. It’s not the size that makes it so special, although this JW Marriott is the world’s largest, sitting on an area covering 600 acres. And it’s not the 1,002 rooms or 26,000-square-foot Lantana Spa with its 30 treatment rooms, or the 36-hole PGA Tour golf facility, or even the six-acre meandering water park with its multiple pools that gets me. And, as good as they are, it’s not even the resort’s restaurants (which serve fresh ingredients grown in the property’s 5,000-square-foot organic garden).

Entrance to Lantana Spa

Entrance to Lantana Spa


Water Park

Water Park

No, what wins my heart is the spirit of the place.

I am talking tequila here. Literally.

I love the concept of this JW Marriott’s tequila bar, which is part of the resort’s main restaurant, Cibolo Moon. The bar is “T” certified, the first in Texas to receive such an honor.  To earn a “Distintivo T” certification from the Tequila Regulatory Council of Mexico, a property must meet rigid criteria. Requirements include that the bar/restaurant offer a list of drinks and cocktails based on tequila, serve dishes in which one main ingredient is tequila, and train staff to have a thorough knowledge of every aspect of tequila, from production to taste.

Tequila Bar at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country

Cibola Moon’s Tequila Bar

When it comes to tequila—this JW Marriott rocks! The bar’s menu not only offers over 100 different tequilas and a staggering number of tequila-based drinks, but also a wide selection of tequila infusions that have been formulated by the resort’s tequila master.

The tequila bar along with the rest of the JW Marriott’s facilities, sit less than 20 minutes from San Antonio International Airport in the Texas Hill Country’s Cibolo Canyons community. For those who can’t get there fast enough, the resort was nice enough to offer their instructions for infusing tequila at home—an activity that suits me to a T!

Strawberry Jalapeno Margarita

Strawberry Jalapeno Margarita

Although strawberry-infused tequila hits the high note of popularity at the JW Marriott (and the bar’s strawberry and jalapeño margarita, alone, is enough to explain why Travel & Leisure named the resort among the 500 best in the world), one can infuse tequila with any number of fruits, vegetables and/or herbs.

It’s quite a mouthful to say, but here Sweet Leisure brings you the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa’s Cibolo Moon tequila bar’s tequila master’s instructions for infusing tequila. (Whew! I need a drink.)



Strawberry Infused Tequila

Strawberry Infused Tequila

1. Pick your base tequila. JW Marriott San Antonio suggests using 100-percent blue agave silver or blanco tequila. Blanco tequilas work particularly well, being unaged and thus the freshest with an ability to take on the most flavor.

2. Choose and prepare the infusing ingredient. The ingredient should be cleaned and cut to maximize flavor release. You can mix and match or go with one flavor.  Here are some suggestions on how to prepare basic ingredients. To make a:

Herb infusion: wash herbs; use stem and all.

Pepper infusion: trim stems from peppers and either score them and leave whole, or halve peppers: remove seeds (for a mild flavor) or leave seeds attached (for extra kick).

Vanilla infusion: split a long, plump vanilla bean in half; use bean and seeds.

Mixed Fruit Infused Tequila

Mixed Fruit Infused Tequila

Berry infusion: wash berries well and remove stems; halve larger berries–leave small berries whole.

Fruit infusion (such as pineapple and mango): peel and cut flesh into chunks.

3. Place prepared infusing ingredient or ingredients in a clean, airtight jar (a quart size Mason jar works well). The amount you use depends on the intensity of flavor you wish to achieve.  Fill the jar with tequila, completely covering infusing ingredients. Cover the jar tightly with a lid and shake a few times to help release ingredient’s flavor.

4. Set the jar in a cool, dark place. Shake the jar a few times a day for the duration of the infusion, which generally takes 3 to 5 days. Taste the tequila every few days until the flavors develop as you desire. (YES!)

5. Filter the tequila through fine strainer, paper coffee filter or cheesecloth into another clean jar, removing the infusing ingredients. The tequila is now ready to drink.

Enjoy infused tequila on the rocks and in cocktails and other drinks.

(Cooks can use it as a flavor enhancer in all sorts of dishes.)

Remember drink responsibly and choose a designated driver, which brings up another great point about the JW Marriott’s tequila bar; one can sample and savor to distraction and stay the night with complete ease. Salud!