Spirits specialist Spirit Cartel is to start distributing ultra-premium tequila Clase Azul in the UK to tap into interest from connoisseurs.
Made from 100% organic Weber Blue agave, the range comes in distinctive bottles hand-made and hand-painted by artisans in the Mexican village of Jesús María in the State of Jalisco.
The range includes a plata, reposado, añejo and Ultra Extra Añejo as well as the pomegranate-flavoured La Pinta, all at 40% ABV. Clase Azul was previously available in only limited amounts in the UK.
The agave is grown in the highlands of Los Altos. It is slow cooked in traditional stone ovens for 72 hours: it is steamed for 24 hours, left to rest with the oven doors closed for 24 hours and cooled naturally for 24 hours.
A unique strain of yeast is used in fermentation and the liquid is then distilled in pot stills to ensure the highest quality spirit which is diluted with natural spring water.
The plata is recommended for selling in retail at £94.99 while the Ultra Extra Añejo carries the recommended price tag of £2,399.
Spirit Cartel’s consiglieri Charles Marshall said: “Clase Azul is more than just tequila – it’s a religion. This range sits in a class of its own, based purely on quality and pedigree and steeped in ancient Mexican tradition. It has a clear point of difference.
“With its breathtakingly beautiful bottles, Clase Azul gives retailers and operators the opportunity to take tequila connoisseurs on a unique experiential journey.”
Tequila Clase Azul Ultra Extra Añejo is aged for five years in small sherry casks, produced in numbered batches of 100 bottles. Each decanter takes two weeks to create, hand-painted with pure liquid platinum, featuring a 24-carat gold label and carrying the signature Clase Azul agave medallion in sterling silver.
The añejo, with a recommended retail price of £599, is aged for 25 months. It comes in a decanter moulded and decorated by the Mazahua, a small indigenous community from the village of Santa María Canchesda. The spiral appliqué on unfired clay symbolises the earth’s fertility and the neck is adorned with a 24-carat gold vermeil charm medallion.
The reposado, with a £132.99 retail price, is aged for eight months and comes in a ceramic decanter that is hand-crafted and individually hand-painted.
The plata is bottled in a modern, crystal-clear glass decanter but with the same Clase Azul shape. Each decanter features a blue base and silver agave medallion. It has a hint of sweetness and a completely smooth flavour profile that makes it suitable for drinking neat or in premium cocktails.
La Pinta, priced at only £59, is a crimson liqueur that combines the plata with pomegranate for a sweet but crisp, tart flavour. It is recommended for serving chilled as a shot or mixed in a cocktail, such as a twist on a Martini, Bellini or Sangria.