We Tried Every Expression Of Matthew & Camilia McConaughey’s Tequila Pantalones — Here’s The Verdict

Feel however you want about celebrity tequila, but one thing is for certain, it’s not going anywhere. The list of celebrities who own (or have owned) their own tequila is a long one, too long to name everyone but if you’re curious, here are a few: Kendall Jenner, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, George Clooney, Guy Fieri, Kevin Hart, Rita Ora, Michael Jordan, The Chainsmokers — you get the point.

People are quick to write off celebrity brands and while there are a lot of bad bottles out there, enough gems exist that I wouldn’t immediately write off a brand just because it’s celebrity-owned. But given that there are so many celebrity brands and so many brands of tequila in general, do we really need another? In theory… no. But at the end of the day, as a tequila fan and drinker, my only concern is whether the tequila I’m drinking tastes good.

So when I heard that Matthew and Camila McConaughey had launched a new brand of tequila, I can’t say I was excited. But when I found out that it was being produced at NOM 1614, home of brands like Tres Agaves and Cazcanes (two brands I’d drink and recommend in a heartbeat, especially the latter), my interest grew.

Then when I found out that the brand was called “Pantalones,” I was even more intrigued. If you’re not aware, “Pantalones,” is Spanish for “Pants.” I’ve seen this brand get a lot of flack on the internet for calling its tequila “Pants,” but I love it. Is it stupid? Yes, but this is a Matthew McConaughey tequila — would you have it any other way? It feels remarkably on-brand and true to the personality behind it.

This is a man who was once arrested in the middle of the night following a noise complaint, where officers found him dancing naked in his home with bongo drums and lots of marijuana. A man whose voice instantly rings “Alright, alright, alright” in your head when you hear his name. He is absolutely the person to name his brand Pantalones. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

On the Pantalones website, Matthew and Camila did the whole riding-on-a-motocycle-through-agave-fields trope, the most pervasive and annoying cliche in celebrity tequila. But midway through the video, they ride around pants-less, which shows me that the McConaughey’s are self-aware. I appreciate that.

I was also pleased to learn that Matthew McConaughey first met his wife Camila at the Hyde Club on Sunset Boulevard while he was making a margarita. They struck up a conversation, and the rest is history. She’s now “the only woman he wants to make a margarita for,” so the pair owning a tequila brand feels like a true point of passion, rather than something a financial advisor suggested because every other celebrity is doing it (though, that might be part of it too).

So given the pedigree of the NOM and McConaughey’s humor and passion for the product, my expectations are pretty high. Let’s dive in to Pantalones.

Bottle Design

Dane Rivera

Bottle design doesn’t make or break a tequila, but I do think it’s important. I like a cylindrical bottle that isn’t too tall. I find them easier to pour, easier to display, and they require less shelf space. Pantalones went the opposite route.

The bottle here is short and stout. The label design is great, it has that old-world design quality and indicates that it’s 100% agave and organic. We would’ve loved to see “additive-free” on there instead of an organic designation, but as far as we know, no celebrity brand has jumped on the additive-free bandwagon yet, so this isn’t exactly out of the ordinary.

The bottle is pretty simple but an embossed agave plant is on the back with a pair of pants underneath. Again, I appreciate the dose of silliness. All in all the bottle design is fine. It’s not annoying or intrusive, it’s not gimmicky or overthought. It’s going to look great on your cart or counter, and that’s always a good thing.

Now, on to the taste! I’ll start from least to most aged expressions.

Pantalones Blanco

Dane Rivera

ABV: 40%
Price: $44.99

The Tequila:

We already covered the NOM, so here is what else you need to know. Pantalones’ tequila blanco is made from 100% blue Weber agave that is cooked in a high-pressure autoclave, roller mill extracted, and fermented in open-air stainless steel tanks before being twice distilled in a stainless pot with a copper coil.

Since its release, the tequila has scooped up a variety of awards, including Gold at the 2024 SF World Spirits Competition and L.A. Spirits Awards, and Gold at the Sip Awards.

Tasting Notes

Nose: Surprisingly herbal on the nose with a mix of roasted agave tones and a hint of floral honey sweetness.

Palate: I’m getting a mostly vegetal agave base, some light minerality, and a dash of vanilla with a nice gentle burn.

Finish: Strong spice on the finish. I like the bite on this one, there is a bit of mint to tamp down some of that spiciness.

The Bottom Line:

Agave forward with some herbaceousness and a spicy finish. Shootable, sippable, but I think where this will shine best is in a cocktail.

Pantalones Reposado

Dane Rivera

ABV: 40%
Price: $49.99

The Tequila:

For its repo, Pantalones ages its tequila in American Oak Whiskey barrels for 9 months. Like the blanco, the reposado has gathered up a few awards as well, including the Double Gold at Sip, Silver from L.A. Spirits, and Bronze at the SF World Spirits Competition.

Tasting Notes

Nose: Heavy, and I mean heavy on the cinnamon here. I’m not getting any agave whatsoever on the nose, which is a shame.

Palate: Sweet and smoothed out. I’m tasting maple syrup, vanilla cake, shaved sugary coconut, and a lot of vanilla.

Finish: That spiciness from the blanco is tamped down here, replaced with a layer of vanilla, and a light hint of oak.

The Bottom Line:

A little too smoothed out and sweet to my liking. I’m sure it’ll make for a people-pleaser at parties. But if you like the more biting qualities of tequila, you’re not going to find a lot of that here.

Pantalones Añejo

Dane Rivera

ABV: 40%
Price: $54.99

The Tequila:

For Pantalones añejo, the tequila is aged for 15 months in American Oak Whiskey barrels. Another award winner, Pantalones añejo has received Double Gold at
World Spirits and the Sip Awards. The relatively light aging (añejos are aged anywhere between 1-3 years) results in a faint straw color that is just a shade darker than the reposado.

Tasting Notes

Nose: Surprisingly, that cinnamon quality of the reposado is gone here. Instead, I’m getting mostly a mix of caramel and vanilla with a hint of
chocolate.

Palate: Rich vanilla and brown sugar largely dominate the flavor here. It has a noticeable dessert-like quality to it. I almost want to pour it on a fresh scoop of vanilla with chocolate sauce.

Finish: Smooth with some butterscotch, and a prominent oak finish. Unfortunately, all the spice from the other two expressions is completely gone here. This is going for dessert-toned and hitting that mark hard.

The Bottom Line:

Syrupy sweet and smooth. It has a palpable whiskey quality to it, which might be your thing, but its lacking in agave character.

Final Thoughts:

Pantalones sits comfortably amongst the best in celebrity-branded tequilas. Having said that, if you’re a seasoned tequila drinker who makes a point of staying clear of celebrity brands, this isn’t going to convince you otherwise.

It’s a good, people-pleasing tequila made at a distillery that consistently produces great brands. But if you were hoping for a budget version of Cazcanes, it doesn’t quite reach that level.

Seasoned tequila drinkers aren’t going to find a lot to like in the aged expressions, but if you’re a casual drinker who is looking for something that goes down smooth and is pleasing to the palate, you’re going to dig this.

The stand-out bottle is without a doubt the blanco, which features a lot of biting agave character and slaps your taste buds with spicy character that is a true joy to drink.

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