At Clase Azul’s La Terraza Los Cabos, Tequila and Fine Dining Soar to New Heights – SURFACE

Source Credit:  Content and images from Surface Magazine by .  Read the original article -


The high-end tequila and mezcal distiller is on a mission to roll out top-shelf-worthy tequila pairings in the idyllic hills of the Mexican Riviera city.

Credit (all images): Clase Azul

Nestled in the seaside hills of San José del Cabo, a resort town dotted with Spanish Colonial Missions on the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, a temple to tequila is putting stakes in the ground. Guests can choose their own culinary adventure at Clase Azul La Terraza, from an intimate omakase bar and secretive five-course chef’s tasting menu to artful cocktails and coastal Mexican fare at the casual-chic El Bar and La Terraza restaurant. 

Renowned for its hand-painted porcelain tequila bottles, Clase Azul Mexico is bringing its same eye for detail to a new hospitality experience. La Terraza is an expression of the craftsmanship and quality that has become one of its most celebrated attributes, starting with interior design that nods to Clase Azul’s origins. Founded 26 years ago by Arturo Lomeli as one of the market’s first sipping tequilas, the whole lineup is best enjoyed neat to savor the one-of-a-kind accords coloring each specially aged tequila and mezcal created by master distiller Viridiana Tinoco. Five core tequilas and two mezcals make up the distiller’s permanent rotation, and its limited-edition releases often become collectors’ items as soon as they drop. 

El Bar’s Azul Bahia marble evokes the nearby ocean and the azure hues of Clase Azul’s famed decanters. The same master artisans who sculpt, paint, and glaze each piece in the company’s Tradición Mazahua ceramic studio contributed their expertise to the glazed terracotta and porcelain tiles adorning the interior. Walls are made of Chukum—a building material made of earth, tree sap, and minerals, created using techniques that date back to the Mayan empire.

Patrons of El Bar can partake in the rare tequilas like the Día de Los Muertos añejo aged in Martinique rum casks, or the 25th Anniversary reposado, made using the stone-milling techniques favored by the ancient Aztec civilization and aged in American whiskey casks. Like any single-malt, the best way to experience the tequilas and mezcals is neat in a proprietary tasting flute, with a tapered silhouette to express the accords within—making El Bar the world’s only place to order a cocktail crafted to Clase Azul’s exacting standards. Those who favor the classic Añejo’s nutmeg and orange notes will be delighted with El Viejo, which adds a port reduction, cocoa bitters, and a chocolatey-fig essence to the mix. For those in search of something lighter, the green apple and lemongrass notes at play in the tequila Plata are perfectly rounded out by grapefruit-lime sherbert and hibiscus salt in the La Palomilla. 

Chef Iván Arias, who developed the property’s Taste of Culture degustation menu, is responsible for the numerous culinary delights—and secrets—of La Terraza. Served in a private eat-seat dining room, photos of the courses are strictly forbidden. “Part of that magic is that we try not to reveal too much, adding to that element of surprise,” he says, noting that tasting menus created around fine tequila pairings are still uncommon in the fine dining world.

While Taste of Culture’s gastronomic delights are closely guarded, the other menus make exquisite use of Cabo’s abundance of seafood with verdant touches from the peninsula’s cluster of organic farms at the foothills of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountains. Guests with a taste for fusion will delight in the pan-Asian influences at play in La Terraza restaurant, which dishes up coastal Mexican favorites. Standouts include a corn and freshly caught seafood ceviche served with lemongrass polenta, and carne asada is complemented by a nopal cactus jus and blistered shishito peppers. 

At the intimate omakase bar, where the nigiri is personal favorite of Arias, fusion goes full-on. Inspired by Japanese gastronomy but executed with a distinctly Baja point of view, the 14-course menu “pays homage to a culture that also has a unique way of perceiving hospitality, arts, crafts, food, and a similar value system,” says Clase Azul VP of Destinations Hector Gaytan. 

The menu honors those similarities with an artful give-and-take between the two cultures. Nigiri are given the Baja touch through accoutrements such as a tejuino reduction made from the region’s popular fermented corn beverage. Other dishes, like the marinated octopus, which is served with a traditional achiote sauce made from annatto, oregano, cumin, and other aromatics, and a chile de uña salsa fresca, are—like everything Clase Azul does—a heartfelt ode to the motherland.

All Stories
Previous Next

Source Credit:  Content and images from Surface Magazine by .  Read the original article -