Professional longboard surfer-turned-photographer, Dane Peterson, is a man of many styles and many talents. After surfing in front of the camera for 20 years, he jumped behind the lens and became one of the top photographers in action sports. He’s honed his eye for capturing waves in California, Australia, and beyond. Most recently, Peterson joined a crew of surfers and traveled to Mexico to discover the roots of Jose Cuervo Tradicional and learn how to make tequila. Here is what he learned:
There is no such thing as Santa Claus.
Mexican children don’t receive presents on Christmas. This was something that caught me totally off guard as the people of Mexico are renowned for their flamboyant celebrations. Instead, they have another celebration which is actually larger and takes place on January 6th — “The Day of the Three Kings.”
We're going to need a bigger boat.
Mexico City was built atop a lake. How they did this, I have no idea. But it’s actually estimated to be sinking up to 10” each year.
See the artwork.
The city of Mexico has the largest amount of museums in the Americas and the second largest amount in the world behind London. Even though I didn’t spend much time in the “city,” I was fortunate enough to visit the Museum Hospicio Cabanas in Guadalajara. There’s an incredible mural painted on the ceiling by Mexican artist Orozco, titled “Man on Fire,” that’s a must see.
Get a green thumb.
During my tour of Jose Cuervo’s agave fields I got the opportunity to actually uproot a blue agave plant myself. In doing so, the local jimodores informed me that the plant has components that assist in stimulating our immune system, and fighting obesity.
Eat street meat.
Don’t be scared of all the street vendors. During my time in Sayulita I had the best street taco I’ve ever eaten in my life! Hands down!
Mexico has the world’s smallest volcano.
It stands at only 43' tall and is called the Cuexcomate Volcano. It’s apparently inactive and, believe it or not, has a staircase that allows tourists to enter it. Uhhh, no thank you.
Hipsters are everywhere.
The funniest thing I learned on my trip with Jose Cuervo Tradicional was that Mexico is currently suffering from a “hipster outbreak." Said Mexican hipsters are now dubbed as “Cholombians". Hahahahaha.
Sealegs happen on land, too.
The city is estimated to be an incredible 2.2km’s above sea level. So, unfortunately, for this toe headed, sun-kissed lipped surfer/photographer, my equilibrium was way out of whack and it definitely took the first couple of hours for me to find my grounding.
Jose Cuervo produces seven different types of tequila.
During my tour of the La Rojena Distillery, which has been around since 1795, I had the fortunate experience of learning how to make the 100% de Agave “Tradiconal” range and even bottled my own personal little stash.
Follow Dane and his crazy, tequila-infused adventures at @d_peto.
Photos by Andy Dangvu