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By Ben Winstanley

- Last updated on GMT

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Related tags Vodka Distillation

Spirits to softs and cocktails to cider, your essential round-up of what's hot on the back bar.
Half Hitch Gin

Half Hitch Gin

Half Hitch Gin is set to benefit from a distribution deal with De Kuyper: Royal Distillers to make the brand available worldwide.

The gin, which is made with black tea, bergamot, pepper and English wood and uses 100% natural in-gredients, was launched in September 2014 and will now be available to a selection of London pubs and hotels, including Young’s pubs, Aqua Shard, HIX Soho, Westbury Hotel, Rosewood Hotel, Firmdale Hotels and Park Chinois.

Half Hitch Gin founder Mark Holdsworth said: “This partnership will see my contemporary British distilled gin wonderfully placed alongside the Dutch Rutte range from the lineal home of juniper spirits.”

Mark de Witte, CEO of De Kuyper Royal Distillers added: “The super-premium positioning of Half Hitch Gin is complementary to our premium Rutte Gin and Jenever brand which we have just successfully launched in a number of countries around the globe.”

The Glenrothes​ 

Glenrothes Vintage Vinyle Sessions

Award-winning Speyside distillery, The Glenrothes has introduced a new tasting platform, The Vintage Vinyl Sessions, due to travel around the world.

The first session took place November 24 at the world-famous Abbey Road and is designed to incorporate the pleasures of taste and sound.

Listening to a specially chosen album made in the same year as specific Glenrothes Vintages illustrates the connection between vintage whisky and vintage music – a powerful emotional trigger.

In accordance with the events, The Glenrothes are soon to release a very rare, celebratory whisky, Extraordinary Cask #11483 from 1969 – a second-fill hogshead cask, filled on 31st July 1969. The cask yielded only 69 bottles at natural strength.

Arbikie Highland Estate


Arbikie.chilli (1)

Arbikie Highland Estate has launched Arbikie Chilli Vodka as the craft distiller celebrates its one year anniversary.

The vodka uses chipotle chillis grown at Scotland’s first Chilli farm, Chillilicious, to capture an ‘earthy smokiness’ that gives the spirit an extra dimension than just heat and works perfectly in a Bloody Mary.

Havana Club

Pernod Ricard has created a new range of drink flavourings inspired by Havana Club Añejo 7 Años in collaboration with award-winning bartending duo, The Bitter Truth.

The brand plans to launch The Essence of Cuba range within the on-trade at 15 selected UK venues, where bartenders will promote the bitters through creative table serves and food pairings. 

The Glendalough Distillery



Lightbox Brands has launched an autumnal gin from The Glendalough Distillery, Ireland’s first craft distillery as the latest addition to its seasonal gins range.

The gin, named ‘The Wild Autumn Botanical’, will be available in hand numbered bottles showing the date when the botanicals were foraged and distilled and “allows bars and retail outlets offer something fresh and interesting with a story.”

Merlet et Fils



Merlet et Fils, which is distributed by Cask Liquid Marketing, has launched a cherry brandy style liqueur named Soeurs Cerises which can be can be served neat, on ice or in cocktails.

Made from a selection of cherry varieties, predominantly Morello, Soeurs Cerises is made by the fruits being macerated in neutral alcohol before being blended with a distilled cherry eau-de-vie and  Merlet Brothers Blend Cognac.


Luxardo Sambuca UK Range


Cellar Trends owned sambuca brand Luxardo has hit the top spot in the UK on-trade just in time for Christmas, according to CGA Brand Index 2015 (03/10/2015).

Craig Chapman, marketing manager for Luxardo at Cellar Trends, said: “Pour it as a chilled shot and offer it with all the same or different flavours on a tray, or be ready for a group and fast pour it from optic or grab the bottle from the speed rail.”


Frobishers Sparkling Ginger

Frobishers has added Sparkling Ginger to its ‘Classics’ adult soft drinks range.

The new variant, which is made using pressed ginger juice, galangal, juniper and sparkling spring water, is the fourth addition to the portfolio, joining Sparkling Raspberry; St Clements Orange & Lemon; and Apple, Pear & Elderflower, which launched in September.

Steve Carter sales and marketing director at Frobishers Juice Ltd said: “This new addition to the Frobishers Classics range is not too sweet and packed full of authentic ginger flavour — a palate cleansing pick-me-up, with fewer than 85 calories per 330ml serve.”

The Classics range from Frobishers has already secured listings across the entire Living Ventures bar & restaurant estate and has its sights firmly set on premium operators.

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