Constellation Brands Inc., Victor, N.Y., has acquired a minority stake in Dos Hombres, an artisanal and handcrafted mezcal brand created by “Breaking Bad” co-stars Aaron Paul and Bryan Cranston. The investment was made through Constellation’s venture capital group, and Dos Hombres remains independently owned and will continue to manage, market and produce its award-winning mezcals.

“Aaron and Bryan have turned their shared passion for mezcal into a truly unique brand and have created an exceptional liquid that receives frequent praise from both the industry and its consumers,” said Jennifer Evans, vice president of Constellation Ventures, in a statement. “Our goal is to make strategic, minority investments in high potential brands in growing categories, and the U.S. mezcal market continues to show great potential. We’re excited to further invest in the category with a great team and brand that we feel has a lot of growth runway.”

The U.S. mezcal market has grown rapidly in the last few years and is expected to continue its strong growth trajectory. The overall U.S. mezcal category grew 14% in 2020 according to IWSR, and ultra-premium mezcal (priced above $30 a bottle) is projected to be the largest and fastest-growing segment within the category.

After forming what the duo dubs a “special bond” while filming the critically acclaimed AMC TV show and knowing they would not be sharing the screen together for quite some time, Paul and Cranston began discussing ways they could work together again as they sipped cocktails at a bar in New York. They soon found inspiration from the drinks in their hands and set their sights on teaming up to create a truly special mezcal.

“We have fallen in love with all things mezcal ― the process, the community behind the spirit, the tradition,” Paul said. “We were just two guys on a quest to find a spirit that we felt everyone would love, and we’ve put a lot of energy into this. We couldn’t be more excited for the next chapter with Constellation and continuing to build this brand. We have big hopes and dreams for Dos Hombres and we are thrilled that Constellation’s vision for Dos Hombres is aligned with ours.”

Launched in 2019, Dos Hombres is the product of multiple generations of proud mezcal producers from the small village of San Luis del Rio, in a remote section of Oaxaca, Mexico. The brand is made with hand-selected Espadín agave that are cooked in underground pit ovens, milled by donkey-drawn tahona, fermented for seven to 10 days with mountain spring water, and double distilled in copper stills. The end product is a well-balanced mezcal that features signature smokiness, yet smooth with hints of apple, mango, local Oaxacan fruits and wood.

“It really has been an incredible journey,” Cranston added. “From an idea at a bar, to searching all over Oaxaca, hiking through the most majestic landscape in search of a mezcal that spoke to us, to meeting incredible people along the way, to where we are today ― we can’t wait to keep sharing this brand with the world.”

Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.