Supermodel Kendall Jenner showed some hometown pride when she announced on social media Tuesday that she is behind the spirits company called 818 Tequila.
“For almost 4 years I’ve been on a journey to create the best tasting tequila,” Jenner, 23, posted on her Instagram page, below a video of her drinking from different glasses. “3.5 years later I think we’ve done it! This is all we’ve been drinking for the last year and I can’t wait for everyone else to get their hands on this to enjoy it as much as we do!”
Check out the post here: https://www.instagram.com/p/CLXIC-VDSVz/?igshid=ph5qob1ds4or
Over the past few years, the tequila was submitted anonymously to spirits competitions. It won a number of awards, including the 2020 World’s Best Reposado title from the World Tequila Awards, the Platinum Award at the SIP Awards (a consumer judging spirit competition) Chairman’s Trophy at the Ultimate Spirits Challenge, Triple Gold at the MicroLiquor Spirit Awards, and many more.
The tequila is not yet accessible in the United States but will soon be available to consumers, according to the Instagram post.
Even though Jenner’s involvement was officially a secret, the Kardashian-Jenner clan had been dropping some not-so-subtle hints. There’s of course the brand’s name, a reference to Calabasas’s 818 area code. Then there were the Instagram stories showing Jenner sipping the drink.
“This is what we’ve really been drinking,” one of her Instagram stories said. “But we’re, shhh, not allowed to tell anybody.”
A bottle of 818 was also spotted in the background of a photo from the Jenner sisters’ recent trip to Mexico.
Family members were quick to congratulate Jenner. “Kenny! I am so so proud of you and the years of work and love you’ve put in to @drink818!” mom Kris Jenner wrote. “So excited for this!!! Everyone go follow @drink818 now!”
Sister Kim Kardashian West, who normally doesn’t drink, wrote “I wasn’t a drinker until I tried 818. Tequila shots all day!”
Jenner joins a number of celebrities who have launched their own spirits brands. Ryan Reynolds is behind Aviation Gin, Kate Hudson is behind King St. Vodka, Post Malone is behind Maison No. 9 Rose, while “Breaking Bad” duo Aaron Paul and Bryan Cranston decided to take a break from pretending to make crystal meth to create Dos Hombres Mezcal. George Clooney, along with partners Rande Gerber and Mike Meldman, sold his Casamigos tequila company for $1 billion to multinational spirits beer and spirits producer Diageo in 2017. Diddy reportedly earns eight figures a month for his Ciroc vodka.
But some have had it with the trend, accusing Jenner and other celebrities of appropriating and profiting off of Mexican artistry.
“I wish white celebs would stop going into Mexico, taking the work of local artisans and Mexican tradition, and making themselves even more hopelessly rich off of our traditions,” one user wrote. “But whatever.”
“Tired of the celebrity tequila craze! WTF does @KendallJenner know about tequila my family’s been doing back breaking work in the fields for their entire lives in Jalisco just for ppl to come dip their toes,” wrote another. “Stay in your lane.”
818 was indeed hand-crafted in Jalisco, Mexico, the birthplace of tequila. If the other celebrities are anything to go by, 818 may help Jenner catch up with her sister Kylie, reportedly the world’s youngest billionaire.