December 17 2018  |  Spirits & Tobacco

Sazerac partners with Casa San Matias to introduce Los Vecinos del Campo mezcal

By Jas Ryat

In partnership with Casa San Matias and a group of mezcaleros in Oaxaca, Sazerac is launching a new family of mezcals called Los Vecinos del Campo.

These handcrafted spirits are produced by 10 families in the Valles Centrales of Oaxaca who have been utilizing traditional methods to create rich agave spirits for generations.

The name Los Vecinos del Campo is a nod to those families and their communities, as it translates to “Neighbors of the Field.”

Carmen Villarreal, CEO and owner of Casa San Matias, has had a strong connection to Oaxaca since her college years when she was moved by the kindness of the people there while working on community-focused social work projects.

“While in Oaxaca, I learned the importance of supporting communities,” said Villarreal. “By offering well-paid jobs, promoting their values and sharing profits of their work back into the community to support health, education and wellness, we can help communities for generations. We are excited that our friends at Sazerac share our enthusiasm for representing Mexican culture and tradition and rewarding the families and communities that make Los Vecinos Mezcal.”

Megan Hurtuk, Marketing Director for Los Vecinos, said: “Over the past several years, we have fallen in love with mezcal and the people who bring it to life in Mexico. We are thrilled to partner with Carmen and do our part to strengthen the long-term sustainability of the category and support the people in Oaxaca who put their hearts and souls into these beautiful spirits.”

Los Vecinos del Campo Mezcals hail from the Valles Centrales of Oaxaca and are produced by a group of 10 master mezcaleros who use processes passed down by their ancestors to distil the small batches of mezcal.

The mezcaleros use locally grown and hand-harvested agave and slow-roast the agave hearts, or piñas, underground to create the sultry, smoky-sweet artisanal mezcals. The piñas are crushed using a stone molino, then naturally fermented in wooden vats, and double-distilled using copper pot stills.

Los Vecinos del Campo is releasing its Espadin expression in several markets, while two other expressions, Tobala and Ensamble No. 1, will be released in 2019.

At 90 proof, Los Vecinos Espadin can be enjoyed in cocktails, or savored neat. To the taste, Espadin is spice up front, moving quickly to roasted tropical fruits, tender young ginger and green bell peppers.

Los Vecinos Espadin has already received high accolades from expert panels including Finalist and Great Value awards at the 2018 Ultimate Spirits Challenge, receiving a score of 94/100 “Excellent, Highly Recommended.”

The new mezcal was also rated as 5/5 Stars - Highest Recommendation from F. Paul Pacult’s Spirit Journal, June 2018.

Los Vecinos Espadin is available in 750ml bottles at a suggested retail price of US$34. It is launching in duty free in January 2019.

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