Tomas Estes, the tequila ambassador and co-founder of Tequila Ocho and London’s Café Pacifico, has passed away peacefully at his home in Oregan.
One of the drinks industry’s most loved and respected figures, Estes was instrumental in building the reputation of agave spirits around the world, as well as educating countless bartenders.
A statement on his Facebook page read: “It is with deep sorrow and a heavy heart that we share the news of Tomas Estes’s passing. He died peacefully in his sleep on Sunday 25th April, surrounded by family in Southern Oregon.
“For those of you who knew Tomas, you’ll know that he lived a full and rich life. There will forever will be a ‘Tomas-sized hole’ in the universe. His capacity for love and kindness was unbounded and deeper than any words could express. The world will be a less bright place for this loss.”
During his lifetime, Estes started 17 Mexican restaurants with bars in six countries, including England and France. In 2008, Estes co-founded Tequila Ocho, a single estate brand now sold in more than 20 countries. The brand was the result of a collaboration between Estes and the Camarena family, who produce Tequila Tapatio.
Estes was named an official ambassador for the National Chamber of the Tequila Industry (CNIT) in 2003 for his work on promoting Tequila across the world. He also penned a book, The Tequila Ambassador, which was nominated for Best New Book at Tales of the Cocktail’s Spirited Awards in 2013.
Tequila Ocho is calling on those who knew him to share their memories of Estes. “If you wish to commemorate Tomas’s life by posting your favourite photo(s) or stories of him, please use the hashtag #RememberingTomas so that we can see and share your memories,” via the brand’s Facebook.