Category Archives: News

Iconic ‘Rue Bourbon’ Street In New Orleans Temporarily Transformed Into ‘Rue Londres Sec’

Beefeater Gin at Tales of the Cocktail 2017

The iconic ‘Rue Bourbon’ street in the heart of New Orleans was temporarily transformed into ‘Rue Londres Sec’ (London Dry Street). The takeover was carried out by iconic London Dry Gin brand, Beefeater, to launch its global MIXLDN 7 cocktail competition to the world’s best bartenders who have gathered in the city for the Tales of the Cocktail festival. Beefeater’s Master Distiller Desmond Payne, the most experienced gin distiller in the world, and Global Brand Ambassador, Sumaiyah Connolly, pictured in the shot, are asking bartenders around the globe to enter the world’s biggest gin competition via http://www.beefeatermixldn.com.

Italian Brand, ITALICUS®, To Launch In Mid-July With Cellar Trends

Italicus

Leading branded alcohol distributor, Cellar Trends, is building on its success of 2017 with the addition of ITALICUS® Rosolio di Bergamotto to its ever-expanding portfolio. From mid-July, Cellar Trends will be handling all sales, distribution and marketing for the brand in the UK.

Capitalising on the worldwide trend of aperitivo, Giuseppe Gallo launched his brand-new spirit, ITALICUS® in September 2016, in a bid to lead the global revival of Rosolio and in doing so, has honoured the historic origin and recipe of this forgotten category.

Produced at a family distillery, the spirit is made by infusing Bergamot and Cedro in cold water to release the essential oils, before blending with Italian grain spirit to produce a lightly citrus nose with hints of rose and lavender. In order to make the most of the delicate flavours of the botanicals, ITALICUS® is best enjoyed with Prosecco, served over ice and garnished with three olives to balance the floral overtones.

Director of Sales and Marketing at Cellar Trends, Terry Barker says: “It is always an exciting time for us when we bring a new product to the market and one such as ITALICUS® offers not only a great taste, but also the opportunity for Cellar Trends to work within a unique category. Since its launch to the UK market, ITALICUS® has already gained listings in a variety of premium bars throughout London, gaining some remarkable feedback from renowned mixologists and we are looking forward to building this brand’s reputation and reach.”

Founder of ITALICUS® Giuseppe Gallo comments: “As a young brand we are very honoured to be working with Cellar Trends, and feel that their expertise and experience will help build on the brand’s success as we continue to establish it amongst the on-trade.”

For more information visit: http://www.rosolioitalicus.com

Chivas Regal Raises A Toast To Atsushi Suzuki

Atsushi suzuki
Chivas Regal, the world’s first luxury whisky, has crowned Atsushi Suzuki from the Sober
Company in Shanghai, China, the 2017 Chivas Masters Global Champion. Over a challenging five-day finale in Tokyo, Japan, Atsushi overcame strong competition from 14 of the world’s most skilled bartenders and led the winning Chivas Masters Collective team to victory, before being declared the overall champion.

The fourth Chivas Masters Global Final required the 15 national winners to showcase the
Chivas Regal values of brotherhood, collaboration and generosity. Atsushi impressed the expert panel of judges by expressing these core principles as he proved the outstanding contestant in what was a highly captivating and memorable final, culminating in the awards ceremony at the MIXX Bar & Lounge at the ANA InterContinental Tokyo.

A Japanese native himself, Atsushi fully embraced the traditions of Japanese bartending culture throughout a week of individual and team challenges, which included four individual drinks-making rounds. Atsushi’s winning team drinks ritual was The Double Talk, which was made using Chivas Regal 12, and presented with a focus on Japanese craftsmanship, kind service and attention to detail. Inspired by the way in which great drinks can bring people together and cross language barriers, he collaborated with his Mexican and Hong Kong team-mates, and was mentored by hospitality industry pioneer and team sensei Iain Griffiths, to devise a ritual which ensured the drink was designed to be shared, and allowed the drink to be adapted and personalised for different countries around the world.

As the newly crowned 2017 Chivas Masters Global Champion, Atsushi has won an all-access, all-expenses-paid trip to Tales of The Cocktail 2017 in New Orleans. The winning Chivas Masters Collective team led by Atsushi – comprising Mexico’s Haydée Barron Flores and Ryan Nightingale from Hong Kong – walked away with the pinnacle of the range, Chivas Regal The Icon, presented in a bespoke decanter with customised Japanese glassware.

Upon being crowned champion, Atsushi commented: “Wow. It is such an honour to receive this – and in my home town too. I feel like it’s a win for Japan as well as for China. And of course it’s not just for me, but for my awesome team of Haydée and Ryan, and my sensei, Iain. I’ve found friends for the rest of my life through the Chivas Masters – and I’ve learnt how to be a better bartender too.”

Max Warner, Global Brand Ambassador for Chivas Regal, commented from Tokyo: “The Chivas Masters Global Final has again shown the world the wonderful values and principles that great bartending can harness. Atsushi fully took the Chivas Regal spirit of generosity and collaboration with him into the final, which was the eventual point of difference in a very tough field – alongside, of course, some spectacular bartending skills.

“Beyond the serve itself, teamwork and collaboration are just as crucial to the craft of drinks-making, and we have witnessed that here today, and throughout the entire contest. That is why we are also delighted to honour the entire winning Chivas Masters Collective, who helped lead our champion to victory and demonstrated that success really does taste better shared.”

The 2017 Chivas Masters Global Final was host to a distinguished panel of internationally
acclaimed judges: Iain Griffiths, hospitality industry pioneer and co-founder of Mr Lyan Ltd;
Micah Melton, beverage director at the Alinea Group and renowned ‘ice chef’; Chris Lowder, ‘New York’s Rising Star Bartender’ in 2015; Dré Masso, ex-director of bars for the Potato Head Group in Bali, Jakarta, Singapore and Hong Kong; and Rogerio Igarashi Vaz, owner of Tokyo’s Tram & Trench. Each not only scored the finalists, but also shared their insights and expertise through a series of inspirational masterclasses over the course of the week.

The evening also saw the first ever Chivas Masters Global Champion, Masa Urushido,
honoured as a Grand Master, in his native Japan.

THE DOUBLE TALK

40ml Chivas Regal 12
20ml Campari
20ml Bianco Vermouth

Garnished with Matcha Tea Salt – or customised to your country

Stirred and served over block ice in a rocks glass, with a side serve for sharing

 

The Chivas Masters Collective teams:

Team leader: Atsushi Suzuki, China

Team member: Haydée Barron Flores, Mexico

Team member: Ryan Nightingale, Hong Kong

 

Team leader: Hyacinthe Lescoët, France

Team member: Daniel Huggins, Germany

Team member: Patryk Biadacz, Poland

 

Team leader: Masato Sakurai, Japan

Team member: Sandra Šalatová, Czech Republic

Team member: Aloisek Rodríguez Martínez, Cuba

 

Team leader: Roger Grüter, Switzerland

Team member: Abner Barrientos, Puerto Rico

Team member: Wouter Bosch, The Netherlands

 

Team leader: Adam Schmidt, USA

Team member: Benjamin Boyce, United Arab Emirates

Team member: Rhys Wilson, United Kingdom

Iron Maiden and Robinsons Brewery Reveal New ‘Hallowed’ Beer

Bruce Dickinson unveils new HALLOWED beer in Antwerp, Belgium. Photo credit John McMurtrie.
British rock legends IRON MAIDEN and independent family brewers ROBINSONS have revealed a brand new Belgian style beer: HALLOWED.

This new ale follows on from the success of the original TROOPER, which has sold over 15 million pints since its launch in 2013, and previous limited edition beers TROOPER 666 and RED ‘N’ BLACK.

Once again, the dynamic duo of ROBINSONS’ Master Brewer Martyn Weeks and IRON MAIDEN’s lead vocalist and ale aficionado BRUCE DICKINSON have teamed up to create something very special for beer and music fans alike.

BRUCE DICKINSON explains: “What makes this brew pretty special is that we’re adopting a Belgian yeast for the first time. I’m a big fan of Belgian beers, so I jumped at the chance to brew my own. While I get very excited about experimenting with new formulas and ingredients, the thing about Belgian beer is that it’s as much a way of life as it is a drink. We’ve tried to bottle that philosophy in HALLOWED, albeit with a British twist.”

At 6.0% ABV in a 330ml bottle, HALLOWED is a Belgian inspired beer that’s brewed in England. It is also one of the first beers to be brewed by ROBINSONS Brewery that uses Belgian yeast. ROBINSONS haven’t changed the yeast used in their beers since 1942, which makes HALLOWED even more special.

Martyn Weeks, Head Brewer at ROBINSONS Brewery, continues: “It’s all in the yeast. Belgian yeast yields a very distinct taste and presentation. You can sniff out a Belgian beer simply from its aromas: fruity, spicy and earthy. Belgian yeasts withstand higher alcohol levels, they attenuate well and create an array of phenolics and esters… put simply, this means more flavour and I think Hallowed drinkers are in for a treat.”

HALLOWED’s innovative bottle label pays tribute to Belgian beer, presenting IRON MAIDEN’s iconic mascot EDDIE, robed in traditional monk’s clothing: a nod to the Trappist monastic brewing tradition in Belgium.

HALLOWED will be available from October 2017 for a limited period of four months. Information on exactly where the beer will be available will be released on Iron Maiden Beer’s and Robinsons Brewery’s social media accounts in due course.

Beefeater MIXLDN 2017 Bartending Competition Open for Entries!

Beefeater
The seventh annual Beefeater MIXLDN Bartending competition is now open for entries! Beefeater Gin is from London and is of London, and is still made in the capital today. Bartenders love it because of its unparalleled quality and versatility in cocktails. For this year’s MIXLDN, bartenders are being asked to create a new cocktail that best encapsulates the spirit of the city they live in, using Beefeater Dry or Beefeater 24.

With the popularity of gin at an all-time high, the world’s biggest gin cocktail competition is set to be the most hotly contested yet, with entries expected from over 30 countries around the world. The winner will be crowned Beefeater MIXLDN 7 Global Champion and will receive the opportunity to create their very own Beefeater Gin at the distillery in Kennington, London, under the guidance of Master Distiller Desmond Payne.

Sumaiyah Connolly, Beefeater Global Brand Ambassador, comments: “As my first year as Global Brand Ambassador, I’m incredibly excited to announce the return of MIXLDN. It’s a competition in which I’ve been involved in the past when I was working with bartenders in Cape Town, South Africa. Bartenders love it because MIXLDN goes against the grain and has always done things a little differently whilst maintaining its credibility since its beginning. A roll call of the six brilliant, previous champions alone, shows you the calibre of talent involved from around the world. I can’t wait to see what this year has in store from the world of bartending.”

Entrants should submit a cocktail recipe concept and its inspiration to the Beefeater MIXLDN website (www.beefeatermixldn.com) before 31st August, 2017. A selection of bartenders will then be invited to the national final to demonstrate their concept to both local and international gin experts – including Beefeater Global Brand Ambassadors Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge and Sumaiyah Connolly.

Special Release Launched For Glen Moray’s 120th Anniversary

Glen Moray
Recognising the work of his predecessors, Graham Coull, Glen Moray’s Master Distiller, selected five different vintages of Glen Moray to create MASTERY, the ultimate ‘blend’.

The result is a whisky of incredible depth and character that encapsulates the very essence of Glen Moray, steeped in the proud traditions of Speyside, released on 1st July 2017.

Three of the five vintages used were laid down by Graham’s Glen Moray forefathers, Robert Brown (manager from 1959-1987) and Edwin Dodson (manager from 1987-2005). Two of Graham’s own vintages are in there too, as well as evidence of techniques first employed by Glen Moray’s original pioneers, James Haddow (manager from 1913-1927) and his son, Alexander Haddow (manager from 1927 -1959).

With great skill and finesse, Graham experimented to find the ultimate composition, using whisky matured in different fortified wine casks (sherry, madeira and port) to form the backbone of the 120th Anniversary release.

By using the sweetness of port to bring out the best in the heavier flavours emanating from the sherry and Madeira, Graham has added his own ‘twist’ to the Glen Moray classic taste profile, bringing sublime smoothness and balance to the masterpiece.

‘The 120th Anniversary Release celebrates the traditional craftsmanship of Glen Moray while raising a glass to the innovation of maturing in wine casks. Mastery is smooth, sleek and sophisticated.’

Graham Coull says: ‘The Madeira casks that we’ve chosen to form the heart of the whisky relate back to the genuine traditions of Glen Moray experimenting with different, innovative techniques in maturation. It’s me putting a twist on the spirit that was made by previous generations of master distillers.’

‘I wanted to bring in something from 1978, some of the oldest whisky in the warehouses, that represented whisky made by Robert Brown, the 3rd generation of Master Distiller, who was at the helm of Glen Moray from 1959 until 1987 as well as casks filled in the 80’s and 90’s by my predecessor, Ed Dodson. We’ve intertwined these with whisky that has spent its full term in first-fill sherry casks and also a proportion that has been finished in port, to develop the layers of complexity in the overall bottling. The port finished whisky brings a little lightness, which we felt perfectly balances the more robust flavours of the sherry and madeira casks in the blend.’

Kingsbarn Distillery Releases Two Years Old Spirit

Bottle (2 years)

Kingsbarns Distillery is proud to reveal that a 2 Year Old Spirit Drink has been bottled and is available to purchase exclusively at the Kingsbarns Distillery and Visitor Centre.

Kingsbarns 2 Year Old Spirit Drink is the first release from Kingsbarns to be matured in oak casks however it cannot be called Scotch whisky as it has not been matured for over 3 years. The release, available in a 200ml bottling is a combination of 2 casks that have matured single malt spirit, for over 2 years, in 1st fill ex-bourbon barrels. It has been bottled non chill-filtered and at the natural cask strength of 62.8%abv.

Having previously released in August 2015 Kingsbarns Spirit Drink in a 200ml bottle at the ‘filling strength’ of 63.5% the aim remains to bottle the very first Kingsbarns single malt Scotch whisky as a ‘Founders’ Reserve’ exclusively for the Founders’ Club in 2018. Kingsbarns Founders’ Club membership is still available and can be bought at the Visitor Centre or online at http://www.kingsbarnsdistillery.com

Distillery Manager Peter Holroyd gave his first impressions of the new bottling at a Kingsbarns Founders’ Club members tour and tasting on Friday July 23rd “We are delighted to announce the limited release of our 2yr old spirit which can be purchased exclusively here at the distillery. It has a sweet, floral nose and on the palate I get ginger biscuits with a slightly dry finish. Its very exciting to see how our spirit is progressing so far, and with only one more year to go until we can call what we produce Scotch whisky, the team here at Kingsbarns are all looking forward to releasing our first malt in 2018”

William Wemyss on behalf of the family stated “When establishing Kingsbarns distillery great effort was dedicated to acquiring the finest casks for maturing our precious spirit and it is fantastic to see how in just 2 years, the spirit had developed and transformed. Expectation and demand for this exclusive one off bottling will be intense given the continuing popularity of the Kingsbarns new make spirit and the whisky enthusiast’s ever thirsty curiosity regarding the progress of this new Lowland malt.”

The release is limited to just 1,800 200ml bottles and is available for purchase, 1 bottle per person, exclusively at the Kingsbarns Visitor Centre although telephone order will be available to Founders’ Club members in the UK and Europe.

Beefeater Launches New Global Marketing Strategy

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Beefeater, the world’s most awarded gin brand, has unveiled a new global marketing strategy to appeal to a new generation of gin drinkers and capture the true essence of London today.

With a long-standing heritage spanning 150 years, Beefeater is from London and is of London, and is still made in the capital today. Under the brand’s new marketing strategy, it will continue to celebrate this legacy, but with a modern twist, capturing the energy and diversity of London city life in the 21st century.

The British gin category has experienced exponential global growth in recent years, with the latest figures showing that exports of British gin grew by 12% in 2016[1]. The strategy will enable Beefeater to continue to tap into this trend, whilst continuing to cement its London roots and distinguishing itself from the rest of the category.

The new direction will be reflected across the brand’s entire marketing programme, both above and below the line – from its advertising campaigns to bottle and merchandise design.

Eric Sampers, Beefeater’s Global Brand Director, comments: “With the global popularity of gin continuing to soar, we want to continue to stand out from the crowd and truly embody the lifestyles and values of our consumers.

“London is the heart and soul of Beefeater and our new marketing strategy takes this to the next level, offering a contemporary twist which we believe will really resonate with the latest generation of gin drinkers. London is one of the greatest cities on earth and we want to bring a little bit of the capital to consumers every time they enjoy our gin – whether that’s here in London, Lisbon or Lima. Our ultimate ambition is to be an icon of London today, and the undisputed number one in premium gin worldwide.”

Chivas Regal Announces The 15 National Winners Who Will Compete In Global Final

Chivas_Masters_finalists_montage (1)
Chivas Regal, the world’s first luxury whisky, has revealed the 15 national winners who will compete to be crowned the 2017 Chivas Masters Global Champion, at the Chivas Masters Global Final taking place next month in Tokyo.

Now in its fourth year, the 2017 Chivas Masters Global Final (1st – 5th July) will focus for the first time on the celebrated traditions of Tokyo’s bartending scene – whose unique cocktail customs continue to fascinate and inspire bartenders across the world. Throughout the week, the contestants will take part in a number of individual and team challenges, and will need to showcase both exemplary bartending skills and team spirit to impress the judges.

The 15 finalists, who have each excelled in their national competitions running across four continents, will be hosted in Tokyo by Masahiro Urushido, the first ever Chivas Masters Global Champion. They will be mentored by a distinguished panel of internationally-acclaimed judges, who will share their expertise through a series of inspirational masterclasses. The panel comprises:

– Iain Griffiths, hospitality industry pioneer and co-founder of Mr Lyan Ltd;
– Micah Melton, beverage director at the Alinea Group (Aviary Chicago & NY) and renowned ‘ice chef’;
– Chris Lowder, spirits evangelist and ‘New York’s Rising Star Bartender 2015’ (StarChefs);
– Dré Masso, ex-director of bars for the Potato Head Group in Bali, Jakarta, Singapore and Hong Kong; worldwide Cocktail Mentor and spirit creator
– Rogerio Igarashi Vaz, owner of Tokyo’s Tram & Trench, celebrating the modern interpretation of Japanese bartending

Max Warner, Global Brand Ambassador for Chivas Regal, comments: “Our 15 national winners have already hugely impressed us with both their skill and character, but there’s still much more to do if they want to be crowned our 2017 Chivas Masters Global Champion. The values of community, collaboration and generosity lie at the very heart of this competition, and successful participants must not only impress a world-renowned panel of judges, but demonstrate that they embody these values every step of the way.”

The Chivas Masters cocktail competition is built on Chivas’ belief that great bartending is measured not only by the achievements of an individual, but by the ability to work in harmony with others. The ultimate winner will not only impress with their individual bartending skills, but – crucially – will also prove their ability to work collaboratively with an international bartending team, and inspire others to achieve shared success, through the Chivas Masters Collective team challenge.

Max Warner continues: “I cannot wait to put our contestants through their paces in Tokyo, and see who will walk away with the 2017 title – and beyond that, watch as they, together with their Chivas Masters Collective, take what they have learned to further develop and inspire their bartending communities back home.”

The 2017 Chivas Masters Global Champion will be decided on the evening of Wednesday 5th July, and will win an all-access, all-expenses-paid trip to Tales of The Cocktail 2017 in New Orleans. The winning Chivas Masters Collective team will walk away with the pinnacle of the range, Chivas Regal The Icon, presented in a bespoke decanter with customised Japanese glassware.

Hudson Launches 70cl To The UK Market

Hudson
William Grant & Sons UK brand, Hudson whiskey, is launching a 70cl format across its Baby Bourbon and Manhattan Rye expressions in the UK.

After ten years at the forefront of craft distilling, Hudson, the first American whiskey distillery in New York since prohibition, is introducing the bigger bottle size in response to demand for a larger format from the UK on-trade.

“We are changing to a bigger bottle, but we haven’t changed our process. We still make whiskey grain-to-glass at the Tuthilltown Distillery in the Hudson Valley. Everything was, and still is, done by hand. It’s been quite a journey, from regular folks making whiskey to award winning distillers.” commented Ralph Erenzo, one of the two founders at Hudson whiskey.

Staying true to its craft and entrepreneurial nature, the brand will leverage the existing US 75cl bottle, under filled to 70cl to meet EU standards. The underfill method reflects how the brand previously bottled Hudson Baby Bourbon in a 35cl format using the US 37.5cl bottle when it first launched in the UK four years ago.

“We have certainly made remarkable progress in the recent past, hiring more people, laying down more whiskey and improving our efficiency, but we are still far from affording a bespoke 70cl bottle for the UK” Ralph Erenzo continued.

Due to the exclusivity of the liquid, Hudson is only available in a small selection of top whisky bars, hotels and restaurants, and premium whisky specialists in the UK. Hudson Four Grain will remain in a 35cl format for the foreseeable future.