Unwrapped – The Other Side of Bartending


William Grant & Sons’ UK Brand Ambassador team will be hosting the first ever Unwrapped: The Other Side of Bartending event in Edinburgh on 29th October. This event, exclusively for bartenders, features a series of talks aiming to support modern bartenders find their legacy within the industry and equip them with tools, knowledge and insights beyond jiggers and shakers. This will be followed by immersive brand experiences and an evening bar takeover where all proceeds will go to charity partner SANE.

Unwrapped’s focus is centered on Brand Ambassador-led talks, designed to be thought-provoking, engaging and specifically relevant to the on-trade; providing attendees with new skills and perspectives, as well as the opportunity to network with like-minded peers and old friends. Sessions will cover subjects ranging from how to keep up team morale and the power of storytelling, to exploring the link between nature and creativity. Following the talks, Alessandra Brugola from the drinks industry charity, The Benevolent, will introduce their latest campaign #notalone.

Unwrapped will be held at Assembly Roxy, and will include immersive brand experiences in the afternoon – from entering the miniscule yet momentous world of Hendrick’s Gin Tini Martinis to making and photographing Monkey Shoulder’s Lazy Old Fashioned.

On Monday evening, a full William Grant & Sons bar takeover at The Voyage of Buck will take place, where the entire UK Brand Ambassador team will get behind the bar to raise money for SANE. The charity partner was chosen by the Brand Ambassadors due to its focus on mental health – a key topic within the bar industry.

Cocktails on the night will include:

The Disaronno Cherry Apple – Disaronno, fermented cherry, 30/40 and soda. Created by Three Sheets, London.
The Balvenie Pina Colada Specs – The Balvenie Caribbean Cask, Coco Lopez, pineapple Juice, cream, milk and a dash of Angostura bitters.

Fabiano Latham, Reyka Vodka UK Brand Ambassador says: “Unwrapped is a great opportunity for all the brand ambassadors to share experiences and insights from the industry, as well as the passion we have for our brands. We want to create a benchmark for industry training programmes by delivering an engaging and interactive event where on-trade teams can come together and truly benefit in years to come.”

Lachlan Rooney, Manager at The Voodoo Rooms Bar says: “The William Grant & Sons team is coming to town with what looks to be one of the most incredible series of seminars to grace the city since Tales on Tour. Bartenders best bring a notepad and pen for the series of talks and activities that could truly make a tangible difference to a career and the local bar community. From practical engagements to empathetic advice on building yourself as a brand, the event covers every aspect of bartending that you’ve never even thought about. With free food, drinks and transport alongside priceless career advice it’s not one to miss out on.”

Unwrapped agenda: Monday 29th October

UK Brand Ambassador Talks 11:00-15:30

Mark Thomson, Glenfiddich Brand Ambassador to Scotland presents: The power of storytelling
Fabiano Latham, Reyka UK Brand Ambassador presents: Adventurivity – exploring the link between nature and creativity
EmmaLi Stenhouse, Sailor Jerry UK Brand Ambassador presents: How to be your world’s best bartender
Alwynne Gwilt, The Balvenie UK Brand Ambassador presents: How to train your nose
John Wayte, Monkey Shoulder UK Brand Ambassador presents: /bar:ography/
Sasha Filimonov, Hendrick’s Gin UK Brand Ambassador presents: How to be newsworthy
Calum Fraser, Premium Spirits Specialist presents: Keeping good spirits in good spirits
Rod Elsamieh, Disaronno UK Brand Ambassador presents: From bartender to bar owner – the tips and tricks to opening your own bar
Stephanie Rainbow, Tia Maria UK Brand Ambassador presents: The courage to be happy
Alessandra Brugola from The Benevolent will introduce their new campaign #notalone

Brand Experiences 15:30-16:30

To attend, please email wgsuk.events@wgrant.com or speak to one of the BA team

Takeover at The Voyage of Buck, 19:00 till 11pm

WG&S Takeover with the UK Brand Ambassadors behind the bar with all proceeds taken over the course of the evening being donated to charity partner, SANE. The party is open to everyone, 18 years old and over.

William Grant & Sons UK’s Brand Ambassadors Host The Highland Festival 2016

Team Balvenie Bootcamp
Following the success of last year’s inaugural Highland Festival, William Grant & Sons UK hosted round two at Haggerston Park on Sunday 21st August. The UK’s top bartenders battled it out to win an immersive trip to Scotland hosted by Lesley Gracie, Master Distiller of Hendrick’s Gin, and UK Ambassador, Ally Martin.

This year saw nine teams compete for the title, with Team Reyka coming out on top, winning the crown and a once in a lifetime prize. “My team did me proud and consistently outclassed in the series of random challenges. They are a great group and I can’t wait to celebrate with them.” – Joe Petch, Reyka Vodka UK Ambassador. Team Reyka included Aidan Bowie from Dandelyan, Russell Burgess from Loves Company, Dan Bovey from B@ONE Bristol, Anna Sebastian from The Beaufort Bar at The Savoy, Aaron Masonde from Oblix at The Shard, Alastair Fraser from Little Bat and Iain McPherson from Hoot the Redeemer and Panda and Sons.

The competitors were faced with new and exciting games including Dash and Grab, Bootcamp Challenge and Last Man Standing along with 2015 favourites, The Ramos Fizz Cocktail Relay and Tug of War. Participants and spectators were kept well nourished by the awesome team at Patty & Bun, with the iconic Sailor Jerry Air Stream bar serving up cocktails from across the William Grant & Sons UK portfolio including the Hendrick’s Cucumber Collins and the Sailor Jerry Highland Vice. The Reyka Vodka ‘make your own’ Bloody Mary station made a comeback and Señor Scoop cooled everyone down with their adult ice creams.

Matt Sayer, Senior Prestige On-Trade Manager, William Grant & Sons UK, commented: “After the success of the 2015 Highland Festival, we had no other option but to bring it back, this time bigger and better! It’s the perfect setting for bartenders to enjoy their day off and for our ambassadors to engage with the on-trade, showcasing their brands in a fun and informal setting.”

Anna Sebastian, from Beaufort Bar at The Savoy, commented: “What an amazing day! Seeing so many people from our industry, from all over the UK come together was pretty special. Seeing old friends and making new ones, it’s events like this that bring us together and make a good industry great. Thank you to the William Grant & Sons UK team for such an organised and well-executed event.”

· Team Glenfiddich, led by ambassador Mark Thomson
· Team The Balvenie, led by ambassador James Buntin
· Team Hendrick’s, led by ambassador Ally Martin
· Team Monkey Shoulder, led by ambassador Grant Neave
· Team Sailor Jerry, led by ambassador EmmaLi Stenhouse
· Team Reyka, led by ambassador Joe Petch (2016 Champions)
· Team Disaronno, led by ambassador Rod Eslamieh (2015 Champions)
· Team Wood’s, led by Rum Specialist Stephen Rutherford
· Team Ancient Reserves, led by Whisky Specialist Alwynne Gwilt

Sailor Jerry Hits The Road For Round Two Of ‘The Ride’

sailor jerry

William Grant & Sons brand Sailor Jerry, will be hitting the road once again for round two of “The Ride”. Kicking off on Saturday 2nd July, three bad-ass, bike building teams from across the UK will be tasked with a series of epic challenges and compete against each other on a hell raising journey of balls-to-wall riding.

This year’s teams, hailing from across Great Britain, include Hackney Wick’s finest bike specialists, Kingdom of Kicks, Welsh motorcycle club and hot rod masters, FTHaters and 2015’s returning challengers, The Ride Originals, who will take on an action packed schedule of hard-hitting challenges on this nine day tour, in a bid to be crowned champions of The Ride 2016.

Each team will be handed their challenge book and routes as they set off, and tasked with making their own way across the country, competing for points along the way. Nationwide challenges will see the teams fight for the lead as they take on epic eating competitions, pit bike races, cutting each other’s hair to wearing their helmet for 24 hours straight. Rolling towards the finish line on the 9th July, the riders will have 24 hours to complete their final challenges face to face ahead of the winner being crowned on 10th July.

UK Brand Ambassador, Emma Li Stenhouse announces, “The grand prize for the winning team is getting to keep the Harley Davidson they customised for the trip, as well as being sent over to Hawaii – the spiritual home of Norman Sailor Jerry Collins, and the most amazingly beautiful place.”
All of The Ride will be captured across social media with #TheRideSJUK and in a series of six videos airing across Sailor Jerry channels from w/c 18th July.

Hashtag – #TheRideSJUK
Twitter – @SailorJerryUK
Facebook – http://www.facebook/sailorjerryuk
Instagram – @sailorjerry

Sailor Jerry Announces A New Range Of Collectable Bad-Ass Bottle Wraps


William Grant & Sons UK brand, Sailor Jerry, will be releasing a series of collectable, iconic flash art bottle wraps and cups throughout the duration of 2016. Released exclusively in the UK and Australia, the first two designs from this limited edition release will be hitting shelves from April, with the second two designs to follow later in the year.

On a slick black bottle, each of the four new collectable designs – the homeward bound ship, an American eagle, a pin-up girl and a Gypsy – are based on the greatest flash designs from the undisputed father of old school tattoos, Norman ‘Sailor Jerry’ Collins. Collins helped revolutionise the tattoo industry with his blend of traditional bold line Americana and Japanese technique. His legacy as a craftsman lives on and his designs are still crucial to tattoo culture, which continues to grow worldwide.

Inspired by brotherhood, embodying freedom of expression and showcasing the craft of old school tattooing, each new wrap design holds a specific meaning. The Gypsy design represents good fortune, whilst the ship design is practical, patriotic and metaphorical – this was tattooed on sailors as a reminder of home, and as a desire to survive and return to their loved ones. The eagle is a symbol for America, which represents honour, prowess and intelligence. As shown on the wrap, Collins’ eagles are iconic and fierce, and associated with the US flag. The refined pin-up girl design represents the ideal and extremes of femininity; the woman inked on a sailor’s arm would be the only feminine form he would see for months – a design which is arguably Sailor Jerry’s most iconic.

Dave Hort, Senior Brand Manager of Sailor Jerry said: “We wanted to provide our consumers with a collectable run of new bottle wraps based on the great, iconic works of our founding father Norman Collins. These new wraps showcase some of the highest quality flash art that has spanned generations, and we’re proud to continue spreading the word of Norman Collins through this limited edition packaging.”

RRP: £20
Available in: All major retailers
Availability: Limited run – once they are sold out, they are gone!

Sailor Jerry Rips Through The UK In Search Of The Ultimate Road Trip

Sailor Jerry

William Grant & Sons UK brand, Sailor Jerry, recently came up with the ultimate road trip across the UK: The Ride 2015. The 15-night road trip left London in August with a custom built Sailor Jerry Harley Davidson Panhead, along with full convoy of other bad-ass bikes, and featured a stellar line-up of Sailor Jerry favourites including live music, roaring engines, great grub and the odd Sailor Jerry throw down chucked in for good measure.

Dave Hort, William Grant & Sons UK Senior Brand Manager for Sailor Jerry commented: “All William Grant & Sons brands stand for something that makes them truly iconic. As a brand, Sailor Jerry honours The Man himself – Norman Collins: his attitude towards life, ideals of hard work, and high standards of craftsmanship. The Ride 2015 was all about rallying a group of authentic, straight-talking, freethinking people to help map out the experience of a lifetime: Sailor Jerry style.”

With a bike crew including pro BMXers, hugely talented tattooists, photographers, designers, music promoters and, of course, fearless bikers – The Ride 2015 left no BBQ joint or bustling bar unturned, scoping out the coolest spots in the UK with a whole host of hellraising events en route. From the Sailor Jerry street party in Nottingham, to checking out the new Livingston Skatepark in Edinburgh, to kicking back at The Trip Out in Bedford – Sailor Jerry has condensed the best places to visit in the UK into one ultimate bike route.

As part of the ride, Sailor Jerry Presents shook up Brighton, Manchester and Glasgow with a cracking line up of live performances to impress music fans. And at the finish line? Danny Cheetham’s kick-ass Sailor Jerry BBQ menu being served up at food and music festival, Grillstock – which included Sailor Jerry Rum marinated Spam fritters, topped with papaya, chilli, Sailor Jerry Rum and pineapple pickled slaw, American cheese and a fried egg, all served in a toasted brioche bun and drowned in BBQ Sauce.

Leading the pack was James Jordan from Kingdom of Kicks who said “Riding with Sailor Jerry was an epic experience. Biking is a huge passion of mine and The Ride was all about kick-ass riding on a killer Harley Davidson Panhead, scenic pit stops and good ol’ banter. I’ve ridden a number of routes across the world but the UK makes for one mean ride and it’s definitely something everyone should add to their bucket list!”

Want to live the Sailor Jerry brand? Unplug from the day job, jump on a bike and discover your wanderlust across the UK with help from The Ride. For more information and the route map visit http://www.sailorjerry.com/en-gb.

William Grant & Sons UK Hosts Pilot ‘Winner Takes All’ Regional Cocktail Challenge Championing Bartenders

WTA winners

William Grant & Sons UK held an event at Reading based cocktail bar RYND last week, encouraging up and coming talent, outside of the capital, to showcase their skills. This first national Winner Takes All cocktail competition showed some amazing bartending talent whilst at the same time saw some of the William Grant & Sons UK portfolio of brands featured in original and inventive cocktails.

38 bartenders, grouped into 12 teams showcased their cocktail making skills and were judged by William Grant & Sons UK brand ambassadors from spirit brands: Sailor Jerry, Monkey Shoulder, Reyka and Disaronno. They were judged on the quality of their cocktail making skills from accuracy, to creativity and style. Participating bars competed for a complete back bar of spirits from the William Grant & Sons UK portfolio.

The competition focused on four unique challenges: The ‘Speed Sour’ led by Disaronno ambassador Rod Eslamieh, the ‘Twisted Martini’ hosted by Reyka ambassador Joe Petch, the ‘Saturday Night Simulator’ concocted by Monkey Shoulder ambassador Grant Neave and the ‘Sailor Jerry Tiki-Off’, presented by Sailor Jerry ambassador EmmaLi Stenhouse.

Congratulations to the winning team: Matt, Matt and Colette from B@ONE in Reading, took home the entire back bar full of the William Grant & Sons UK portfolio. With the winning team based in Reading, where the competition was hosted, the prize didn’t have far to travel.

Joe Petch, William Grant & Sons UK Reyka Brand Ambassador, who led the competition, commented: “I started my career in Reading so for me this competition was really an opportunity to bring together like-minded bartenders from around the country – away from the usual capital city focus – and showcase some great up & coming talent. We saw some genuine originality from the participants using some of the William Grant & Sons UK brands: Monkey Shoulder, Reyka, Sailor Jerry, and Disaronno.

“The competition was a great success and was thoroughly enjoyed by competitors and spectators alike. This is an event we will definitely be doing again.”

Sailor Jerry Spices Up Category With New Bottle

sailorjerry_1_webWilliam Grant & Sons has unveiled a new look for its premium spiced rum, Sailor Jerry. The new bottle design has been developed to reinforce the brand’s premium credentials, authentic heritage and personality and provide clearer standout on shelf in retail and on the back bar.

While the liquid remains unchanged, the new design is an evolution of the previous look with clearer cues to Norman ‘Sailor Jerry’ Collins, the father of old-school tattooing. The bottle neck is now embossed with the iconic brand anchor and dates. The front label has also been split into two sections to allow more prominence of the hula girl iconography and script, whilst highlighting the proof and style, bold and smooth. A new bottle shape has also been introduced, ensuring the brand is clear and recognisable amongst its competitors.

Inspired by the famous tattoo artist, six new Sailor Jerry pinup girls have been added to the inside front label of the bottle. Brand fans already remove the label to collect the existing range and the new pack includes a new, removable label so that Sailor Jerry fans can easily continue their collections with the new artwork.

Senior Brand Manager for Sailor Jerry, Riana Gallagher commented: “Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum was developed to continue the legacy of Norman ‘Sailor Jerry’ Collins and was inspired by his era, when goods were made by hand and people had a stronger sense of pride in their work. The new packaging has been introduced to align the brand’s look and old school feel with the premium, authentic nature of the spirit.”
“In a competitive category, the changes have been made to ensure Sailor Jerry remains prominent in the on and off-trade sectors and reflect the values of craftsmanship, independence and originality Sailor Jerry was built on.”

In the off-trade, spiced rum now accounts for a quarter of all rum and is the fastest growing sub-category by value, while in the on-trade, value sales of spiced rum have almost doubled in the last two years, adding £50m to the category. Sailor Jerry is the number two spiced rum in the UK on and off-trade.

The new Sailor Jerry bottle will be available from September and joins a global roll out of the new packaging. In the UK, the recommended retail price remains £22.00.

Sailor Jerry Launches UK Initiative To Get Bartenders A Day Off And Find The ‘Nation’s Favourite Bartender’

Sailor Jerry

Sailor Jerry is taking a bold step. For the first time in UK history, it is launching an initiative to show bartenders some appreciation for all that they do for its patrons. The spiced rum brand is campaigning for 100,000 signatures to bring a petition to parliament and have Bartender Appreciation Day (B.A.D.) recognised as an official holiday in the UK – yes, a day off for bartenders.

B.A.D., a day to celebrate the tradition and expertise of bartending is already celebrated with various events in America, Finland, Australia and France. The U.K is now joining this initiative by encouraging people to give bartenders an appreciation toast and sign the petition at a dedicated Sailor Jerry website,www.bartendersday.co.uk.

Recent consumer research commissioned by the UK’s number two spiced rum¹ revealed half of bartenders feel under-appreciated by UK drinkers. Over 60% named customers waving cash and clicking their fingers as the worst consumer habit. Actions speak louder than words, so Sailor Jerry has also launched a search for the ‘Nation’s Favourite Bartender’. Consumers can nominate their number one bartender by going to http://www.bartendersday.co.uk. The winner with the most votes by 31st August will be crowned The Nation’s Favourite Bartender and win a trip to the Sailor Jerry House in Austin, Texas in 2015 as well as a Sailor Jerry Presents gig in their hometown. The top 20 will also receive a special limited edition Sailor Jerry Cocktail kit.

Brand Ambassador for Sailor Jerry, Emma Listenhouse will be visiting cities throughout the UK to say thank you and reward bartenders with random acts of kindness, such as a free taxi ride home, pizza deliveries and Sailor Jerry clothing. A team of Sailor Jerry B.A.D. girls will also be raising awareness of the nationwide activity in Manchester, Brighton, Bristol and London to boost signatures for the Bartender Appreciation Day petition and help find our Nation’s Favourite Bartender.

For more information on the B.A.D. petition and the search for The Nation’s Favourite Bartender, visitwww.bartendersday.co.uk and follow @SailorJerryUK #BartendersDay

Sailor Jerry + Jeffrey West | Stewed, Shoed & Tattooed


Sailor Jerry and Jeffrey West Launch Limited Edition Shoes for Selfridges

Renowned British Shoe Brand Jeffery West, have entered their 25th year and have began celebrating this anniversary by creating a pop-up store in collaboration with Sailor Jerry and Selfridges entitled ‘Stewed, Shoed and Tattooed’.

On the 7th February, Jeffery West will launch the ‘Stewed, Shoed and Tattooed’ pop up display in the Men’s Shoe Department of Selfridges’ flagship Oxford Street Store. The collaboration involves utilising the creative flair of highly respected artist Aasen Stephenson from design brand Deathhouse, who will be ‘tattooing’ or etching into a shoe for any customer that purchases a pair of Jeffery West shoes over the 4-week period.

Sailor Jerry embodies the independent spirit and unapologetic attitude of Norman ‘Sailor Jerry’ Collins who was noted for saying “My work speaks for itself.” The concept behind Stewed, Shoed and Tattooed honours a legendary piece of ‘Sailor Jerry’ flash that harkens back to the days of sailors spending their shore leave on Honolulu’s iconic Hotel Street. Sailor Jerry Spiced, the rum created to honour the legacy of Norman Collins, is a straight-up, no nonsense, old-school rum, blended the way it should be, bold and smooth.

The Jeffery West ‘Stewed, Shoed and Tattooed’ Pop-Up will be in-store at Selfridges from the 7th February until the 6th March. To book in a specific time or ask any stock specific questions please call the Selfridges Shoe Department on 0207 318 2366.