Supermodel Behati Prinsloo partners with rocker husband Adam Levine on a passion project that embodies their love for Mexico in the form of a pretty pink bottle.
Photographed by Hugh Lippe
Behati Prinsloo and Adam Levine have each excelled in their respective industries, soaking up the spotlight and making a splash on the global scene. From jet-setting across the world and starring in some of the most coveted fashion campaigns to holding the prestigious title as a Victoria’s Secret Angel, Namibian supermodel Behati Prinsloo has had the privilege of experiencing the world’s most inspiring places. And her rocker husband and Grammy Award winner Adam Levine, frontman of Maroon 5, has his own lengthy list of global tour destinations and career highlights.
But a consistently shared passion between the two in their eight-year marriage—outside of their children, of course—is a love of Mexico and a love of its premier spirit, tequila. After many years of sharing memories there and indulging in its cherished libation, the entrepreneurial couple decided to launch their first dual venture— the red wine barrel-aged Calirosa Tequila.
“We were in Mexico so many times, oh my god. You know, Adam and I got married there. We had our honeymoon there; we spent his 40th birthday there. We literally lived in Mexico for a while before we had kids, and while we were there, we randomly tried a pink-tinted tequila and I originally thought it was dyed,” Prinsloo shares on the inspiration for the project. “People started to explain to us the story behind it—there are some distilleries that [use] red wine barrels to create this special variety of tequila as opposed to traditional whiskey- or bourbon-barreled aging processes. We were sitting on the beach drinking and enjoying the tequila and we were like, ‘We should really try to do this ourselves and start our own brand.’ At first, it was just a passion project where we’d try to come up with fun names, but then it started evolving into meeting the right people and making the dream a reality. The dream was obviously to have the brand in a store like BevMo and see it on the shelves there, but that always seemed like a ‘dream big’ kind of thing.”
It wasn’t until Prinsloo and Levine stumbled upon Tequila Selecto de Amatitán distillery run by the Real family that they saw the full potential for this venture. As partnering with a family-owned distillery to produce a small-batch, high-quality product was top of mind, as well as maintaining 100% agave, the pairing was a destined match.
“When we set out on this product, we knew we wanted a different profile, and we loved the concept of using red wine barrels. We wanted to ensure it still tasted like tequila, but the red wine addition also brings this fruitiness that I love. And of course, we are huge tequila drinkers, so the quality was super important. It had to be better than anything else out on the market, because we wanted it to be our go-to drink when we’re having tequila, not like, ‘Ours is good, but this one is better.’ Keeping it authentic and putting out something we were truly proud of was essential.”
Dividing and conquering in this husband-wife business partnership were paramount. While some may find the art of mixing business with pleasure rare and delicate, it came naturally to the supermodel and music icon whose complementary skill sets and personalities became the golden ingredient to their success. “We’re like yin and yang,” Prinsloo notes. “Adam is super creative and introverted. He took the creative process, branding, bottle shape and label creation under his belt, working with his amazing tattoo artist, Brian Randolph, on the designs. I would give input on what I liked and what I didn’t.”
“It was really cool for us to have 100% creative control over a brand that we started from the ground up. Coming from a modeling background, I never had full control over anything. And Adam obviously has a bit more control in his career, but he is in a band, so he and his bandmates always have to agree on everything together. For us to jump into this having complete control over the idea from start to finish was truly exciting, and we learned that we work really well together. Adam is more of a homebody and I’m more at the forefront of the party, going out and really selling the tequila.”
Speaking to the supermodel, it’s obvious how she found this element of the business so natural. From her down-to-earth, outgoing personality mixed with her undeniable passion for the brand, end users and partners are destined to fall in love with Calirosa upon the first sip.
Thus, Calirosa was born with two tequilas on offer— the signature pink 30-day-aged Rosa Blanco tequila, and 18-month-aged Añejo followed by the recently launched three-year-aged Extra Añejo—available on their website and in select beverage stores.
Photographed by Hugh Lippe
With a brand ethos that nods to the couple’s love for the relaxed beach lifestyle, it was obvious that they would first introduce their tequila on the sands. Luckily for us, Prinsloo and Levine will be landing in Miami to debut the pretty pink spirit for the city’s annual Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival. The duo will host two festival-sanctioned events, Calirosa Tequila Sunset Happy Hour at the 1 Hotel Beach Club as well as a private sit-down dinner with chef Scott Linquist at his cherished eatery Como Como (tickets are available for purchase HERE).
“I’ve never been to the festival before, but I’ve heard the best things from my Miami friends. When our team was strategizing how to debut the brand in specific markets, SOBEWFF felt right. I love Miami, I love the lifestyle there, and it is so perfect for the Calirosa lifestyle that we’ve imagined—daytime going into nighttime beach vibes; the sunset, ocean and sand. Miami is honestly the perfect backdrop for this,” she shares.
The festivities kick off Thursday night, Feb. 24, with the sunset happy hour followed by a beautifully paired meal at Como Como, which places heavy emphasis on its in-house tequila selections, making it an apt setting to experience Calirosa. “Scott [Linquist] is incredible and we’re so excited to bring both the food and the cocktails together in a beautiful setting. It will be super special,” notes Prinsloo.While Calirosa is certainly Prinsloo and Levine’s newest baby in the family, Prinsloo continues to maintain a balance between her family life and career, finding ways to ensure she is never too far from home.
“I’m at a point in my career where I’m not flying all over the world and doing every job that comes up, so I’m picking and choosing, which is really nice for my kids and my time. I wouldn’t say there’s a method to the balance, but I think when something like this happens, you kind of just figure it out. As moms and parents, you have to be able to adjust,” she says. “I’ve always thought it was important for kids to see their parents working hard, knowing where their things come from and having a good work mentality. Balance is obviously tough, but there are ways to make it work, especially now that everyone is on Zoom.”
She continues, “I think if my kids were older and they were in middle school and had a ton of homework and I had to drive them around Los Angeles to different activities and places, that would be different. But right now, I’m still their whole world, so it makes it easier.”
Looking at her top priorities in life—her family, marriage and ever-evolving career— Prinsloo is a realist when it comes to setting goals for 2022. Rather than adding pressure to the brand and forcing the launch, she and Levine attest that Calirosa will grow organically.
“For Calirosa, it’s a really long-term thing for us. We want to grow it in the right way and not throw it in everyone’s faces, but also have it be seen and heard,” she notes. Above all else, however, she strives for peace, health and happiness, as over the past two years, we’ve come to appreciate this unparalleled luxury firsthand.
“I hope for everyone in the world that we can ease back to normal life and come together and hang out. My parents just flew back from Africa for the first time in two years and got stuck here for a bit due to the virus. It makes you really feel how big the world is—it felt so small for a while, and we tend to forget that,” she notes. “I think we need to appreciate that and take advantage of what we have and celebrate that. And hope for our return to normal life in 2022.”
With that, a toast to health, happiness and uninhibited fun in 2022—with a Calirosa cocktail in hand, of course.
Behati Up Close
Calirosa muddled with fresh fruit (my favorite is dragon fruit) and salt on the rim. I’ve also recently discovered the espresso martini mixed with our Añejo—holy cow! That is so good.
Three things you can’t live without:
Sunshine, nature and my family
Anything savory, like salt and vinegar chips
Highlight of your modeling career:
All of the traveling I did and just seeing the world. I would’ve never had that experience if I didn’t get as far in modeling as I did, and meeting all the amazing people.
Bucket list career goal:
I don’t know—world domination, haha!
Favorite vacation destination?
It’s usually between Hawaii, Mexico and Africa.
Favorite song of the moment:
Anything Sublime in general. I’ve been listening to so much of it. It’s not new but it’s awesome.
Photography by: Photographed by Hugh Lippe