There’s a new tequila in town and it’s showcasing El Paso and its culture in the best way possible.

El Perro Grande is a new tequila brand created by El Paso businessman, Renard Johnson.

Johnson is known as a man who always gives back to his community, but this time he wanted to give back to his community in the best way ever, through tequila. Ok, maybe it’s just best in my eyes because I love tequila but, whatever.

Renard’s interest in creating his tequila came about when he was tired of being left out of the party.

“ I was going to these events and everyone was drinking and all I remember as a young kid was either you take a shot or you put it in your margarita,” said Renard. “Years later, a friend of mine introduced me to sipping tequila, and I wondered if I could really fall in love with tequila and I did. Once I fell in love with it I said what if I can start my own tequila company and that's how it all started"

Renard began his tequila business right at the height of the pandemic, 3 years ago which made it challenging at times when it came to tasting the tequila to make sure that it was exactly what he and his team wanted.

Courtesy: Iris Lopez
Courtesy: Iris Lopez

El Perro Grande’s distillery is located in Jalisco, Mexico. That is where the Agave plants used for the tequila are from.

"What happens when we go to Mexico, in the beginning, is they give you a raw base of the agave, and you take the raw base of the agave plant and you add the flavor profile that you want for your tequila," said Renard.

The taste of the tequila wasn’t the only thing that Renard and his team wanted to make sure was perfect. The design of the bottle was equally important because Renard wanted it to represent the El Paso community as much as possible.

“I wanted something that kind of represented that underdog. El Paso is certainly an up-and-coming city. We’re small but mighty and I thought, what better design to use than a chihuahua,” said Renard.

The Chihuahua-shaped tequila bottle has iconic El Paso symbols all around it including 915, the star on the Franklin mountain, and a flag with the words, Bienvenidos, written on it as a tribute to our sister city, Juarez.

“More bark less bite is our tagline,” said Renard. “ I also wanted to make sure that when you saw this sitting on a bar shelf you, as an El Pasoan, can say ‘Let me see that bottle and tell you about that bottle.”

El Perro Grande recently won an award in the San Francisco World Spirits Competition for their unique bottle design.

Earlier this month, the county and city of El Paso recognized the tequila brand by naming August 16th, 2022 as “El Perro Grande Day.”

Five years from now Renard hopes that this tequila will be in bars all across the nation and that El Paso will have its own El Perro Grande headquarters in Downtown El Paso so locals can enjoy the tequila in their hometown.

“I'm so passionate about El Paso. I love this place because it’s made me who I am,” said Renard. “I grew up here and I wanted to make sure we had something we could call our own.”

El Perro Grande tequila is now for sale at the following El Paso liquor stores: 

  • Fiesta Liquors: 901 Horizon Blvd, Socorro, TX 79927
  • Speakeasy Liquors: 720 Belvidere St, El Paso, TX 79912
  • Juanitos Liquor Store: 7810 N Loop Dr, El Paso, TX 79915

El Perro Grande Tequila

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