Maria Jose Lehman


Years of Participation


From Financial Advisor to Tequila Ambassador, this woman is becoming the face of Tequila in South Carolina. The road to her second act has been filled with great coincidences, new opportunities and monumental learning experiences. Maria Jose, who is known as “Tequila Maria” all over S.C., started her new adventure in January of 2014. Her main charge is to educate about the spirits produced from the agave plant. She came into the liquor industry with a fresh eye and a tremendous passion for the business. Lehman’s second act feels fantastical in nature—though in reality she crisscrosses the state tirelessly, educating restaurants, retailers and consumers to the Agave Distillates. On any given day she extols the intricacies from production to juice in the bottle. Her knowledge of Agave Distillates is solid; knowledge that has been acquired through many hours of study, tastings, seminars, certifications and travel.
Maria Jose completed the WSET Level 2 Award in Spirits and has studied and completed Levels 1-3 of the “Tequila Sensory Evaluation” courses, taught by world renowned Maestra Tequilera Ana Maria Romero Mena. She is equally enamored with the production of tequila and has become a level-3 Gran Catador of Tequila (Catador: evaluator/taster). Through her presentations she brings this distillate to life by sharing the essence which consists of labor, family tradition and legacy.
“Tequila is passion, it is craft and it’s the hands that pass down the ability to make tequila from one generation to the next”.