New product round-up

Christmas spirits: 'world first' vodka, non-alcoholic rum alternative and 'Sea & T' RTDs unveiled

By Stuart Stone

- Last updated on GMT

More pours: which new products have launched in the past week?
More pours: which new products have launched in the past week?

Related tags Spirits Beer Wine

A wave of new spirit news including updates from botanical rum distillery the Spirited Union, the Cotswolds Distillery, Nordic beverage brand Altia and alcohol-free spirit maker Caleño has landed in the past week.

Spirited Union expands range with trio of new expressions

Amsterdam-based botanical rum distillery the Spirited Union has launched three new 38% ABV expressions in the UK – Queen Pineapple & Spice, Sweet Orange & Ginger and Pink Grapefruit & Rose.  

The three serves are the latest in a range which launched in 2019 with Spirited Union Spice & Sea Salt and white botanical rum Spirited Union Lemon & Leaf. 

Spirited Union Queen Pineapple & Spice Rum is made by macerating the flesh of a Queen Victoria pineapple in Panamanian rum, while the Sweet Orange & Ginger variant is made by infusing and distilling sweet oranges from Valencia and Curacao to add citrus notes to cask-aged Jamaican rum. 

What’s more, the Pink Grapefruit & Rose pour is made by distilling the skin of blush-pink grapefruits to match the floral taste of Swazi rum.

“We are continuing our quest to produce rums with real flavour; creating union between the vast and colourful world of botanicals to produce a range of exciting naturally-flavoured rums,” Spirited Union founder, Ruben Maduro said. 

“Having lived and worked in Aruba in the Dutch Antilles, I looked to warmer climates for inspiration for our botanicals for these new expressions.  

“Our Queen Pineapple & Spice has a taste of the tropics and the Sweet Orange & Ginger has a bite of ginger for Jamaican heat.”

“We’re really proud to have been able to launch three new expressions during these difficult times,” he continued. “It’s great to see the love that’s out there already in Amsterdam where our fully sustainable, solar-powered distillery and brand home is located. 

“We produce and package our rums in the most sustainable way possible.”



Sea Arch launches Sea & T alcohol-free RTDs

Sea Arch Drinks has unveiled two new non-alcoholic RTDs using its Coastal Juniper distilled spirit, which is made using traditional distillation techniques and boasts bitter grapefruit, blood orange, coriander and coastal notes from sugar kelp and samphire. 

The Sea & T is a double measure of Sea Arch spirit mixed with a lightly sparkling Indian tonic, while the Rose Sea & T is blended with a delicate rose and raspberry infused tonic.  

Derived from 100% natural ingredients, the two new low-calorie pours are sold in 250ml recyclable aluminium cans.

“Bursting with seaside botanicals, our Sea & T has all the deliciousness of a G&T with none of the alcohol,” Sea Arch Drinks co-founder Sarah Yates said. “It’s a great addition to the Sea Arch range as the convenient format of a ‘ready to drink’ can means people can simply snap it open and serve, ideally over ice and a slice. 

“This makes the Sea & T an easy and delicious option for occasions when you might be driving or working, or you simply don’t want to drink alcohol. As we like to say, it really is more beautiful without.”

Sea Arch

Cotswolds Distillery unveils second Amaro Liqueur 

Following the successful launch of Cotswolds No 1 Whisky Amaro at the beginning of the year, the Cotswolds Distillery has unveiled its second Amaro Whisky Liqueur expression, Cotswolds No 2 Whisky Amaro.

The base for Cotswolds No 2 Whisky Amaro is Cotswolds Peated Cask Single Malt whisky which is finished with a selection of botanicals including chamomile, citrus and herbs.

The 40% ABV pour’s base whisky is matured in ex-peated quarter casks the resulting whisky is wonderfully balanced, rich and fruity with subtle notes of peat smoke.


Koskenkorva Vodka Climate Action on sale in 2021 

Koskenkorva Vodka Climate Action, which claims to be the world’s first vodka made entirely from regeneratively farmed barley, will launch in early 2021 – and distributed in the UK by Indie Brands - following a collaboration between Nordic beverage brand Altia, farmer Jari Eerola and the Baltic Sea Action Group (BSAG).

The barley used to make the new vodka has been farmed according to the definition of regenerative farming set out by BSAG’s Carbon Action platform. 

“We don’t want to do our work at the expense of our planet,” Pekka Tennilä, CEO of Altia explained. “Sustainable barley farming is one of the ways we aim to honour this goal, as barley cultivation is one of the major factors contributing to the carbon footprint of our products. 

“Our collaboration with BSAG has given us access to the most up-to-date research findings and best practice.

The Koskenkorva distillery has a 99.9% recycling rate and even the husks of the barley left over from vodka distillation are used to power the distillery’s own bioenergy plant.  

In addition to grain spirit, the Koskenkorva plant produces starch and raw materials for animal feed – and the carbon dioxide generated in the process is collected and used in greenhouse cultivation. 

“Koskenkorva Vodka Climate Action is an important innovation for us, because it takes the brand another step closer to its goal of being the world’s most sustainable vodka,” Suvi Reinikkala, marketing director of spirits at Altia added. 

“We want to provide consumers with more sustainable choices and show how we can create inspiring brand experiences while also protecting our planet.” 


Seven Bro7hers creates limited-edition second lockdown brews 

Salford-based craft brewer Seven Bro7hers has announced a series of limited-edition beers to mark England’s second national lockdown.

The brewer will be releasing range of 440ml cans throughout the heightened Covid-19 measures, with the brewery’s first drop, the Rye IPA, already confirmed.  

Slated as “the ultimate taste of Autumn”, the 5% ABV ale is described as a sweet, nutty and spicy Rye with a beautiful reddish amber hue by its creators.  

“We have been forced to temporarily close the doors of our beer houses and taproom for lockdown, so we thought we would use this time to get back to what we love doing most – experimenting with our brewing,” Seven Bro7hers’ CEO Keith McAvoy said. 

“We have been exploring new flavours and trying our hand at different beer styles to provide our fans and beer lovers with a fun selection this lockdown period. 

“First to drop, is the Rye IPA. The dark nights have drawn in and people are stuck at home, so we thought we would make the perfect autumnal brew. 

“Keep an eye on our web shop and social media channels, as we will be announcing further lockdown 2.0 specials in the coming days – we hope there will be a little something for everyone.”


Caleño launches non-alcoholic Dark & Spicy spirit

Alcohol-free spirit brand Caleño has unveiled a Dark & Spicy variant packed with pineapple, tropical notes, ginger and kola nut spices as an alternative to spiced rum. 

Caleño Dark & Spicy joins the brand’s original Light & Zesty pour which blends juniper, citrus and spice botanicals and features golden Inca berry. Both products are inspired by the flavours of Colombia, are sugar, sweetener and allergen free, and don’t contain any artificial flavourings.

“I’m incredibly excited to be launching Caleño Dark & Spicy, which really captures the tropical flavours of Colombia, a land steeped in joyful living,” founder Ellie Webb explained. 

“Caleño is designed to bring more moments of joy to people’s lives (yes, even when they’re not drinking). Both of our vibrant, colourful bottles are bursting with bold natural tropical flavours, and complement each other perfectly, suiting a whole array of different palettes.

“We experienced a huge growth in sales over lock-down as people began to reclaim time out of their busy lives to focus on the important things, like friends, family, and self-care, which included re-evaluating drinking habits to support a brighter, bolder and more vibrant way of living. And that’s why we’re here, to help support that.”


Bodega Bay creates Cherry with Mango & Goji Berry RTD variant 

Hard seltzer brand Bodega Bay has announced the launch of a new Cherry with Mango & Goji Berry pour, which will be available from stockists and distribution partner Molson Coors. 

Bodega Bay has pledged to donate 1% of all sales to the Thirst Project, which aims to provide people in need with access to clean drinking wate across 13 countries.  

What’s more, all gross profits from sales of the 4% ABV Cherry with Mango & Goji Berry serve over its launch weekend, Friday 20 November until Sunday 22 November, will be donated to The Thirst Project. 

“After repeated requests for our next variant, with a particular callout for a Cherry lead Bodega Bay, we went searching for a combination which could refreshingly include Asia’s best kept secret superfood, Goji Berry,” Charlie Markland, founder and managing director, said. 

“Cherry flavours lean into Christmas with mango leaning into summer. To support our partners, the charity Thirst Project, we are delighted to donate all gross profits from the first weekend of sales directly to them.”

Luke Romick, director of marketing and partnerships at Thirst Project added: “Thirst Project is proud to partner with Bodega Bay to provide relief to the 663m people across the globe who still lack access to safe, clean drinking water. 

“We’re excited to give everyone across the planet the opportunity to drink good and do good by helping end the world water crisis with every purchase of Bodega Bay Hard Seltzers."


Junimperium launches Winter Craft Gin

Award-winning Estonian craft gin brand, Junimperium, has launched its Winter Edition Gin – said to be inspired by festive flavours and aromas of Northern Europe, where the gin is distilled – in the UK.

Described as “the perfect seasonal sipper”, the Christmas spirit boasts warming spices, bitter orange, and “Christmas tree-esque” flavours from juniper berries and Lingonberry native to the Estonian Boreal Forests.   

The gin is made in Junimperium’s distillery in the Estonian capital of Tallinn in a copper still with seven botanicals: coriander, Angelica root, bitter orange, cardamon, cassia bark,vVanilla and a mix of four different Juniper Berries. 

The gin is finished with an unfiltered Lingonberry infusion that gives the gin a deep burnt red-orange colouring.


Copper Rivet Distillery releases Masthouse Single Malt Whisky 

Based in Chatham, Kent, Copper Rivet Distillery has released Masthouse Single Malt Whisky (45% ABV), its first single-estate serve.

Masthouse Whisky is a natural, unfiltered Whisky, pot-distilled and matured in ex-bourbon and virgin American white oak barrels and made in accordance with the distillery’s INVICTA Whisky Charter which sets outs the rules and standards to which Copper Rivet’s whiskies will be made.  

Made with specially grown Kentish malted barley, Belgravia, from the nearby Isle of Sheppey, the spirit is inspired by the ancient craft of mast-making at Chatham’s Royal Dockyard, where the Whisky is distilled  

“We’re obsessive about creating beautiful, accessible spirits for people’s enjoyment and the way we’ve built our whisky distillery reflects that,” Copper Rivet Distillery’s co-founder Stephen Russell said. “We’re not in Scotland, so we have some flexibility in the process.  

“Among the most significant differences between Scotch and English whisky is that England’s whisky distillers are not bound to using only certain types of casks and stills. So we have a big opportunity to be creative and innovative in the way we bring flavour through.  

“Also, let’s not forget that the weather conditions in Kent and Scotland differ significantly – for example, Kent’s climate is much warmer and drier. 

“Nonetheless, we wanted to give consumers a clear idea of what to expect from Masthouse Whisky, so we created the INVICTA Whisky Charter,” he continued. “This is our declaration of the high standards we apply to making whisky so that our customers can trust and appreciate the spirit. 

“Every bottle clearly details the grain variety we use, the name of the field in which the grain was grown and the barrel numbers from which the spirit was taken. 

“With Masthouse Whisky we aim to go over the top in our quest to produce a fascinating and elegant whisky which competes with the best from around the world on flavour and quality.”

Copper Rivet

Hofmeister to launch Weisse and Ultra-Low pours 

Hofmeister has announced that it will be launching Hofmeister Weisse, a traditional Bavarian wheat beer at 5.1% ABV, and Hofmeister Ultra Low, a 0.5% ABV Bavarian Helles lager, next month.

Relaunched in 2017 by drinks entrepreneurs Spencer Chambers and Richard Longhurst after acquiring the brand from Heineken in 2004, Hofmeister has been reinvented as a premium 5% Helles lager made in keeping with the 1516 German Reinheitsgebot beer purity brewing law which dictates that it can only use three local ingredients – mineral water, barley and hops.

The brew news follows the announcement that two pub industry veterans have invested in revived beer brand Hofmeister, which they believe is in line to be one of the UK’s most popular pours in the next five years.

Kim Francis and Euan Venters have not only poured funds into Hofmeister but have been unveiled as non-executive directors.  

Francis most recently served as managing director of Ei Group and in charge of running 1,900 pubs in London and the south east while Venters was managing director of Greene King’s brewing and brands until 2013.

Francis even has previous experience with Hofmeister – at one time the fourth biggest beer brand in the UK – having listed and sold it during his days at Courage.

Read more here


Ridolfi Donna Rebecca Brunello di Montalcino DOCG hits UK

Italian wine specialist, Independent Wine, has launched Ridolfi Donna Rebecca Brunello di Montalcino DOCG across the UK. 

Donna Rebecca is Ridolfi’s most valuable Brunello di Montalcino DOCG wine, a previous winner of the Platinum Medal at the Decanter World Wine Awards and was included on The WineHunter Merano Wine Festival's list of Italy’s Top 100 wines. 

Elvira Dmitrieva, founder and CEO of Independent Wine, said: “We are proud to bring some of Italy’s best wines to customers in the UK. 

“Thanks to our online business model we manage to keep our costs down and can pass those savings to our customers.

“With our next day free delivery service, millions of people in the UK can experience the premium quality of Donna Rebecca at a very affordable price. 

“Right now, many customers are on the hunt for premium-quality wines to gift their loved ones for Christmas. We believe that Donna Rebecca would be a wonderful choice for those who understand, and appreciate, fine wine.”


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