The Clase Azul brand is mainly known for its Tequila. That comes in beautifully designed bottles in the shape of a carafe, handmade, and hand-painted. With this, Clase Azul supports many native artists. And the Clase Azul Mezcal comes in such a unique bottle design, as well.
The founder Arturo Lomeli is proud of the traditions of his country. That shows in the attention to detail, from the Tequila and Mezcal to the perfectly designed packaging. To preserve Mexico's traditional art, he has also established a foundation with Clase Azul. The "Fundación con Causa Azul" helps artists to monetize their art. By this, they ensure that the techniques live on and Mexico's native art does not die out.
Both of their Mezcal expressions represent a specific region in Mexico. So let's have a closer look at the Mezcal offering of Clase Azul and check out these luxury products.
Clase Azul bottle design
Each item produced by Clase Azul comes in a unique style. Many incorporate elements from ancient forms of art. For example, the bottle design of the Tequila Añejo features the four-leafed flower. A traditional Mazahua representation of the sun. And the Master Artisans edition Tequila features traditional clay techniques from Tonalá. A small town located in Jalisco and known as the cradle of Mexican ceramics. Of course, Clase Azul Mezcal also showcases such traditional Mexican art.
Clase Azul Mezcal Durango
Agave family: Durangensis
Age of agave: 12 - 15 years
ABV: 40%, 80 proof
Clase Azul Mezcal Durango is made from wild growing Cenizo agave plants. This type of agave grows on steep hillsides in the states of Oaxaca, Guerrero, and Durango. In this particular case, all agave originates in Durango, therefore the name of the Mezcal. The soil in that area is very rich in minerals. In combination with local spring water, this creates a distinct taste.
With this Mezcal, Clase Azul follows traditional production processes and even mills by the human hand. -Usually, a donkey does the hard work in milling processes. The final result is a bright Mezcal with a medium body. The aromas in this Mezcal are citrusy and herbal with notes of cooked agave. The taste is complex and smooth with a beautiful smoky flavor. Also, notes of nuts, chocolate, and brown sugar shine through.
The bottle design is super clean yet extravagant: A matte-black finish combined with a colorful hand-crafter bottle cap. Each black bottle is hand-carved by the Mazahua people, whereas artisans from the Wixárika culture create the bottle cap designs. To me, this bottle design is one of the best I've ever seen.
That level of detail comes with a hefty price. Clase Azul Mezcal Durango is usually sells for $300 to $350.
Clase Azul Mezcal Guerrero
Agave family: Cupreata
ABV: 42%, 84 proof
Clase Azul Mezcal Guerrero is the second Mezcal release by Clase Azul. And just like the Durango, it is also made of wild-growing agave plants. In this case, Papalote agave growing in the state of Guerrero are used to create the Mezcal. Those plants grow in the hills of Guerrero and combine coastal climate with deep green forests. This unique combination also shines through in the aromas and taste of the final product.
Compared to the Mezcal Durango, the Guerrero release is richer with a fuller body. Aromas like grapefruit, rosemary, flowers, and oak dominate the nose. On the palate, the unique terroir of the agave shines through. Wooden notes mix with slightly salty notes from seaweed. But you can also taste lemon, a bit of tobacco, and some hints of pepper.
The jade-colored bottle has the same shape as the Durango expression. On it, you can see the four-petaled flowers. These flowers represent the Fifth Sun which refers to a pre-hispanic god. The origin of all and everything. The hand-painted colorful bottle cap features hummingbirds. Hummingbirds are also known as the messengers of the gods. A mystical legend that plays a vital part of Mexicos culture.
The price for this gorgeous Mezcal is even higher. Expect to pay around $700 to get one of these beauties.
Where is Clase Azul Mezcal made?
Clase Azul doesn't own Mezcal distilleries. Instead, they hire various local Master Mezcaleros to produce their spirit. -This is the case for many Mezcal brands because each region in Mexico has a unique selection of agave plants with different characteristics.
These local master distillers know best how to treat and process those local agave plants to get the best results. In fact, most Mezcal brands even let you know who exactly produced the bottle you're buying. A lovely way to pay tribute to the true masters of the art of Mezcal distilling.
Is Clase Azul Mezcal worth its price?
Clase Azul is an excellent Mezcal, no doubt. The attention shines through in every aspect of these products. However, the ultimate question is, is it worth the high price tag. And this can only be answered by yourself as it's also about what's behind the spirit. The products are rare, hand-crafted, and absolutely unique. When only comparing the taste and quality, you certainly can find equally good Mezcals at a lower price. But with Clase Azul, you not only buy a spirit. You buy a piece of art. And it is hard to evaluate its price objectively.
How to drink Clase Azul Mezcal?
Both Mezcal expressions sold by Clase Azul are far too costly to mix them. The best way to enjoy such a luxurious product is neat or over ice. Make sure to use a large and quality ice cube. They will melt slower and therefore prevent too fast dilution.
If, despite everything, you want to mix it, please don't hide its flavors in a Margarita or Paloma. Instead, try to enhance the flavors of the Mezcal by using it as the base of a Mezcal Old Fashioned.