Jen Hawkins, Jake Wall and Sesión Tequila

From modeling and property management to setting up their own spirit brand, Jennifer Hawkins and Jake Wall tell us about their fondness of tequila, Mexico and what drew them to their latest venture, Sesión.

Sesion tequila

Explore Drinks: Lovely to meet you both and thank you for being a part of the autumn edition of explore DRINKS. Can you tell us how you came up with the idea for Sesión?

Jennifer Hawkins: It’s nice to meet you too, thanks for having us!

Jake Wall: I was introduced to tequila about ten years ago while in the US. I really enjoyed the taste of tequila and it became my drink of choice. I now enjoy Sesión on the rocks.

Creating a tequila company has been a pipe dream of mine for a long time now, but it took a few years to find the right team, distilling partner and perfect the juice!

JH: Jake introduced me to tequila actually, when we were in the Maldives. The taste was different to other spirits and now it’s literally the only spirit I drink. We had our heart set on starting our own tequila brand and Sesión just happened. It was definitely a long process – three years all up – but we were persistent and the rest is history.

ED: Who came up with the name?

JW & JH: We had a brainstorming meeting; well we had a few, of course! We were talking about tequila being a sessionable drink in the US and Mexico – they don’t just slam it down in a shot glass, they really enjoy the flavours tequila brings straight or in a cocktail. We wanted to change that perception of tequila in Australia and decided to name it Sesión, which translates to session in Spanish.

ED: What’s special about Sesión tequila?

JW: Our distilling partners at Tierra De Agaves have an incredible heritage dating back over 250 years through the Beckmann family who are eighth generation distillers. Our process, heritage and quality are second to none.

JH: Their ancestor Don José Antonio de Cuervo actually created the first tequila and still to this day we use the same yeast strain that was used way back then. Isn’t that amazing?

JW: Sesión has smoothness; it’s so easy to drink and we have won gold and silver medals to back that up.

JH: It was pretty incredible to win medals for our Blanco, Reposado and Mocha tequilas at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition. We were extremely humbled and proud.

ED: You both wear many hats; from modeling to property management and working as an ambassador, how do you find the time to work on a tequila brand?

JW: Ha. I stay away from modeling now; I am a builder by trade and loving our business ventures with Sesión and J Group Projects.

We have great people in the right positions working with us both daily. Our life is pretty hectic, I will admit that, but we are working towards some big goals! I love having this girl by my side through it all.

JH: I agree! Life can get pretty busy, but I’m so grateful for the opportunities and life we lead, truly. It has taken a lot of work and persistence to get to this position, but gosh I love it. You asked about how we find the time – we just do. Prioritising, delegating, acting on instincts, and enjoying work all play a huge role. Beyond that, if I can be honest, we get up at 5am every day and go-go-go. It really is about switching hats daily. The most important thing in business, I think, is working with amazing, enthusiastic people and I am obsessed with our team!

ED: What’s it like (challenges and highlights) working together as a couple? Does the tequila help? 

JW & JH: Well, we don’t actually cross over too often, we see each other at brand meetings and that’s about it. When it comes to growing the brand that’s when passion comes into play and we get carried away in the moment. It’s fun and nerve racking all at the same time! We love it!

ED: When entertaining at home, what ‘easy to make drinks’ would you have ready to offer your guests?

JW: We really enjoy making palomas in summer and they are really easy to make at home. Add 45ml of Sesión Reposado and half a fresh lime juiced into an ice filled tumbler; top with grapefruit soda and garnish with a lime wedge.

Another great drink is a ginger margarita, which is 45ml of Sesión Blanco, 10ml agave syrup, 25ml fresh lime juice and one-quarter of a fresh ginger knob mixed in a cocktail shaker and served!

JH: Mm, yes palomas, strawberry margaritas, or last weekend we served up watermelon spring floras. Ah, they were insanely good, so fresh! Ingredients are on our Instagram and website. 

ED: Knowing your tequila is going to be delicious, and I may have one too many, have you got any tips on how to bounce back and look 100 per cent the next day?

JW & JH: Ha, well if you stick to Sesión and don’t mix your spirits you will wake up fresh. Well almost…

For more info on Sesión Tequila, check out www.sesiontequila.com, and be sure to check out our tequila cocktail recipes here.

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