You don’t shoot this tequila…you savor it.
National liquor days are the perfect excuse to celebrate your favorite brands, no matter what day of the week it is. Which is exactly why I’m excited to celebrate National Tequila Day 2012 with Clase Azula Tequilas. So whether you enjoy your tequila chilled in a shot with lime, in your favorite margarita, or neat in a sniffer (you’re so classy), you’ll no doubt want a bottle of this ultra-premium tequila at the ready.
Clase Azul Tequilas are produced by Casa Tradición, a Mexico-based company located in the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico. The tequilas are crafted with care by master distiller Arturo Lomeli who built the company from the ground up. The first Clase Azul, Reposado, was launched in 2001, followed by Ultra in 2007, and Plata in 2008. Lomeli and his team spent several years tweaking and perfecting the traditional techniques used to produce each tequila. Blending time-honored tradition with innovation in distillation has produced a superior tequila.
Produced from 100% organic agaves, the tequilas gain their ultra-premium distinction in part to the maturity process of the agave. The agave is grown to maturity for at least nine years before harvesting and cooked in traditional brick ovens. It is then fermented using a proprietary yeast strain that enhances the complex characteristics of each tequila. Adding an additional layer of sophistication and the real eye-catcher to Clase Azul, are the custom decanters that the tequilas are bottled in. They feature handcrafted artwork from from Mexican artists giving the tequila a true air of local tradition.
Although you can pair it with the usual lime wedge and salt for a chilled shot, this tequila is really meant for savoring. Almost akin to a fine scotch or whisk(e)y, the unique distillation process and quality of the agave produce a flavor that is clean and soothing without the jarring bite that makes the aforementioned lime and salt necessary to chase it with. Each Clase Azul tequila is unique in its own right from flavor to packaging.
Clase Azul Reposado is aged in oak barrels for at least eight months, giving the tequila an intense gold color. This reposado tequila has a taste that is smooth and clean with hints of vanilla. It is the ideal sipping tequila. The brilliant white ceramic decanter is individually hand painted by local artists in a remote community rich in history and culture. In its final stage of creation the bottle is emblazoned with the gorgeous, silver agave. Each bottle takes up to 11 days to create before it is sealed with a cork closure and topped with a heavy silver cap.
Clase Azul Plata is made with naturally filtered water that is purified in a five-step process. This blanco tequila is crisp and clear with a smooth finish. It is perfect chilled, in a shot glass and as a base in premium cocktails. Its sleek bottle design is made of glass shaped like the iconic Clase Azul decanter featuring the line’s signature silver agave plant.
Clase Azul Ultra is a limited-production, ultra-aged tequila and the crown jewel of the Clase Azul Tequila line. This highly revered extra-anejo is made in small batches of 100 numbered bottles that retail for $2000 each. Clase Azul Ultra offers a sublime tequila experience. Aged for five years in sherry wood casks from Spain, it is smooth with a lush taste full of agave character. This deep amber tequila has a complex aroma with notes of brown spice. Each decanter takes up to 40 days to create. Ultra’s black decanter is made of high quality ceramic with hand painted liquid platinum and 24k gold label design. Each bottle is presented in a luxurious, custom made display case.
It’s no surprise that any one of the above Clase Azul tequilas would be perfect in your favorite margarita. But why not be adventurous and give these summer-centric Clase Azul cocktails a spin.
Strawberry Mint Julep
- 1 large strawberry
- 1/4 peeled orange
- 1/4 lime unpeeled
- 1/2 tsp. sugar
- 4 large mint leaves
- 1 oz. of CLASE AZUL PLATA tequila
- 4 oz. all natural pure lemonade
Directions: In a shaker combine: 1 large strawberry, ¼ peeled orange, ¼ lime unpeeled, ½ tsp sugar, 4 large mint leaves. Muddle all ingredients until well combined and juices are extracted. Add 1 oz. of CLASE AZUL PLATA tequila and 4 oz. all natural pure lemonade. Fill with ice and shake. Strain into a low-ball Julep glass filled with fresh ice and garnish with a fresh strawberry and sprig of mint.
Ready for Round Two?
- 1 cup chopped fresh pineapple
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
- 10 oz. CLASE AZUL PLATA
- 12 oz. fresh pineapple juice
- 12 oz. lemon-lime soda
- Crushed ice
Directions: Combine pineapple and mint in a pitcher, muddle. Add the tequila, pineapple juice, and lemon-lime soda. Serve over crushed ice and garnish with fresh mint leaves.