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A man in a cowboy hat stands at a bar surrounded by greenery
Photograph: Courtesy Jose Cuervo

You can drink free tequila cocktails at a Wicker Park pop-up this weekend

Sip sustainably-made drinks and dine on Jalisco-inspired bites from local chefs at Jose Cuervo’s traveling agave bar.

Emma Krupp
Written by
Emma Krupp

Most nights, you’ll find plenty of Chicago bars for sipping tequila—but this week, you can actually drink tequila from cups made from tequila. 

On Friday and Saturday, the liquor brand Jose Cuervo is bringing its traveling agave bar, stocked with products made from 100 percent repurposed agave, to Big Star’s Wicker Park location for a free, sustainability-focused drinking party. At the pop-up, guests can sip classic cocktails made with sustainable “upgrades” while dining on bites inspired by Jalisco, Mexico and prepared by Chicago chefs Juan Zaragoza (Birrieria Zaragoza), Clementina Flores (Sol de Mexico) and Bertha Garcia (Xocomo Antojeria), as well as Ricardo Ramirez, Marco S. Tapia and Chris Miller of Big Star.  

Wondering how the pop-up’s cocktails get a sustainable boost? Like the bar’s cups and straws, which were fashioned from recycled agave fiber (a byproduct of tequila production), each recipe incorporates ingredients that may have otherwise been thrown away: A Matador is made with brown banana syrup and lime cordial comprised of leftover citrus peels and juice, for instance, while a Carajillo uses locally-sourced coffee and spent coffee grounds to make coffee-flavored cordial. While you’re eating and imbibing, listen to live DJ sets from Chicago artists like Felix Da Housecat and Stefan Pounce, among others, and score agave-made swag, including clothes, coasters and accessories.

Cups, bottles of tequila, a book and a cowboy hat on a wooden counter
Photograph: Courtesy of Jose Cuervo

The Joe Cuervo Agave Bar will pop up at Big Star (1531 N Damen Ave) on Friday, September 16 from 3-9pm and Saturday, September 17 from noon-9pm. Entrance to the pop-up is free with RSVP and includes up to two complimentary cocktails and food. To secure your spot, visit the Cuervo Tradicional Agave Bar website.

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