Juan Bonilla spreads the good word about his favorite spirit through Viva Tequila Festival.
It’s been more than 15 years since Atlantan Juan Bonilla began selling tequilas from Mexico wholesale to restaurants in town. What started as one tequila brand quickly erupted into 27, as well as a variety of wines, beers and other spirits. Now, through his Viva Tequila Festival (@vivatequilafestival), Bonilla is determined to teach people that tequila is more than a party drink. “The key element to everything that I’m doing is to make sure that people enjoy tequila with food. The pairing of the food with the tequila is what really makes this special,” shares Bonilla. He’s able to do this through Viva Tequila’s four other business pillars: the Dinner Series, a five-course dinner and tequila tasting hosted at restaurants around Atlanta; Tour Mexico, an ultracurated, luxury trip to Mexico for tequila tastings, farm tours, culture immersion and more; Viva Tequila Festival, an all-day tasting event allowing thousands of Atlantans to try rare tequilas and food pairings; and its membership program, a flat-rate subscription service that allows participants to get hard-to-find brands of tequila straight to their doorstep. Here, the aficionado gives us an inside look at some of the best brands the spirit has to offer.