Cotswolds Distillery releases second Heart and Crafts expression
In celebration of St George’s Day, Cotswolds Distillery has launched a 55.2% single malt whisky aged in Pineau de Charentes casks, its second Heart and Crafts expression.
Pineau de Charentes is a little-known regional specialty of the Charentes Maritime region of France – north of Bordeaux and encompassing the Cognac-producing region. It is made from fresh grape juice, which is blended with Cognac and left to age in oak barrels.
“I first started drinking Pineau on a trip to the beautiful Atlantic island of Isle de Ré, just off the cost of La Rochelle, in 1994 and I’ve always had a soft spot for it,” Daniel Szor, Cotswolds Distillery founder, said. “Hence the excitement at the idea of aging our Cotswolds single malt spirit in these casks.”
Inspired by the Arts and Crafts Movement, the spirit bottle boasts a design by William Morris – one of the leaders of the Arts and Crafts Movement, which was created in the late 19th century.
Pinkster unveils lower ABV spritz
Pink gin Pinkster has entered the burgeoning spritz market with the launch of Pinkster Spritz, a lower-abv spirit drink.
Bottled at 24%, Pinkster Spritz is made with gin-soaked raspberries left over from producing Pinkster and is initially available in Raspberry and Hibiscus and Elderflower and Raspberry flavours.
“Drum roll please for Pinkster Spritz, a mainstream alternative for spritz drinkers with discerning taste buds, looking for a naturally delicious light aperitif,” Stephen Marsh, Pinkster’s managing director, said.
“With more and more people trying to lead healthier lifestyles and cutting back on alcohol, all consumer insight indicates that lower-abv and lower-calorie drinks are totally on trend.
“It’s been some time in the making and as you’d expect from us, this is another authentically subtle drink that’s sustainably sound and made with natural ingredients, including our signature real raspberries grown minutes away from our rural Cambridgeshire HQ.”
Fabulous Thai Rum Company launches in the UK
The Fabulous Thai Rum Company has landed in the UK with an initial range of three 28% ABV rum liqueurs comprising Lychee, Kiwi & Thai Basil; Ginger, Lemongrass & Kaffir Lime; and Pisang Banana, Cinnamon & Nutmeg.
The Fabulous Thai Rum Company has been created by Carl Stephenson, founder of The Bloomsbury Club, and will be distributed via Craftwork and specialist drinks wholesaler, Champers – which will distribute to the London-based on-trade.
“We’re really excited about the potential for such an innovative product, and one which has a real point of difference,” Craftwork’s Jeremy Rocket said of the launch. “Particularly right now.
“As the UK emerges from its current lockdown, we are expecting there to be an intuitive need to counteract the challenges of the last few months.
“Consumers will be actively seeking out new, exotic flavours; something which can provide the element of escapism and excitement that we’ve all been missing.
“We’ve already had great feedback from a number of bars as well as the Thai restaurant sector, who are particularly enthused to see an authentic top quality Thai rum liqueur on the market.”
Sheppy's cider relaunches VAT 07 in 330ml cans
Somerset’s cider maker, Sheppy’s, is relaunching its VAT 07 cider, with 10,000 limited edition cans newly available from its online shop and independent retailers.
VAT 07 is a cloudy sparkling cider with what its creators describe as “a sweet fruity character”. The 4.5% ABV pour features a blend of homegrown and Somerset apples, including Michelin, Harry Masters, Jersey and Dabinett.
Cold Town Brewery creates flagship lager
Edinburgh-based Cold Town Brewery has created a 4% ABV flagship craft lager, initially available in Woodwinters in Bridge of Allan and Edinburgh and the Cave in Glasgow as well as the brewer’s online shop and eight Margiotta Food & Wine stores across Scotland’s capital.
Cold Town Beer was first launched in 2018 and named in honour of Calton Hill Brewery in Edinburgh, which claims to be the first in Britain to brew lager in 1835.
More than 20 different beers have been brewed by Cold Town Brewery to date, including pale ales, IPA’s, pilsner, saison and berliner-weisse sour beers.
“We’ve been working hard behind the scenes to get this up and running over the past few months, so we’re really excited to be finally launching our Cold Town craft lager in cans, so fans of our brewery can enjoy a cold one in the comfort of their own home,” head brewer Ed Evans said.
“Cold Town craft lager has already been tried, tested and loved on draught by drinkers in bars across Scotland.
“All of our brews begin their journey in bars, and then are brought online when we feel that we’ve received a seal of approval from our customers who drink them and the bar teams who help create them.
“We’re always brainstorming to get the ‘bar raised’ on all our brews without taking ourselves too seriously.”
Fourpure Brewing Co unveils rebrand
Bermondsey-based Fourpure Brewing Co. has unveiled a rebrand in a bid to simplify its range of beers and make its pours less daunting to craft curious consumers.
The rebrand, which will roll out over the coming months, involves clear-cut packaging with what the brewer claims are no-nonsense product names like ‘Lager’ and ‘IPA’ designed to be easy to navigate for all drinkers whether familiar with craft beer or not.
“As the craft beer industry continues to be as weird and wonderful as possible, we’ve decided to take a step back and create a look that reflects our attitude to brewing - simple and effective,” Adrian Mooney, marketing director at Lion Little World explained.
“It’s no secret that growth in the UK craft beer market has started to slow and the reason is quite simple, it’s not very accessible.
“Fourpure’s rebrand is a mission statement that we don’t want craft beer to be shrouded in mystery and endless acronyms, meaning your average Joe doesn’t have a clue what to pick up on a supermarket shelf.”
“The rebrand goes beyond a cool new can design,” Mooney continued, “we’ve done a huge amount of research to identify barriers to purchase and this reset will allow Fourpure to bring new people into the category who’ve previously been turned off or scared away by its complexity.
“We’re still making the same seriously tasty beer and have been since day one and with brewmaster John Dreibergen at the helm, we’re really excited about the opportunity to put it in the hands of more consumers.”
Adnams launches Avocado Leaf Gin
Suffolk-based brewery and distillery Adnams has launched small batch gin Jardín Mexicano. The limited-edition seasonal gin includes Avocado leaf, traditionally used in Mexico for its antioxidant and mood enhancing properties in tea.
Avocado leaf brings subtle notes of anise and liquorice which blend with a mix of classic and Mexican-inspired botanicals including epazote, chipotle chili, lime peel, Mexican oregano and coriander.
The small batch gin is available from 29 April for a limited period.
“I first discovered Avocado leaf on a trip to Mexico where it was the secret ingredient in a plate of black beans,” John McCarthy, head distiller at Adnams, said.
“I was blown away by its delicate anise quality which paired so beautifully with classic Mexican flavours of lime, chili and coriander and was determined to recreate this in gin form.
“Whilst the UK is no stranger to avocado, I am excited to make avocado leaf the star of the show in Jardín Mexicano. It’s produced a really vibrant, complex but most importantly delicious gin that can be enjoyed all summer long.”
Caleño releases Light & Zesty non-alcoholic cans
Available from April 2021, Caleño’s original Light & Zesty non-alcoholic spirit will be available in cans ready mixed with a naturally light tonic.
“We know that many consumers have adopted a more balanced approach to drinking alcohol in lockdown, which put a stop to most social activities usually associated with drinking, and we also know that many will be looking to maintain these new habits as we come out of lockdown,” Caleño founder Ellie Webb said.
“Another key factor in our launch is the fact that the RTD (ready-to-drink) market is truly taking off in the UK and presents an important opportunity for our brand.
“That’s why we decided to launch new Caleño Light & Zesty cans in the run up to Summer, so that Caleño can be enjoyed ready-mixed and out and about - and be there to support consumers in their lifestyle choices, as life slowly starts to return to some sort of normal. It’s the perfect destination drink for the warmer seasons.”
New Caleño Light & Zesty cans are free of artificial flavourings and allergens. They are also suitable for vegans and vegetarians.
Kopparberg launches trio of flavoured vodkas
Independent fruit cider maker and flavour expert Kopparberg has unveiled a trio of flavoured vodkas – Lemon, Passionfruit and Kopparberg mainstay Strawberry & Lime.
“No one does flavour like we do and we weren’t content with the dull and subtly flavoured options currently available on the market,” Rob Salvesen, head of marketing at Kopparberg, said.
“New Kopparberg Flavoured Vodka offers a bold burst of fruit flavour and colour in a way that only Kopparberg can, ready to shake up late night drinking for existing Kopparberg fans and vodka drinkers alike.
“As a brand that has always been about creating great memories with friends, we’re excited to play a part in a summer that promises to be truly one to remember.”
Gerry’s launches gin, vodka and rum-based hard seltzers
Using a traditional spirit – vodka, gin, rum – based, drinks maker Gerry’s has released a range of low calorie, gluten free and vegan hard seltzers.
Gerry’s is available in six combinations, Watermelon + Mint Vodka Seltzer; Cucumber + Lemon Gin Seltzer, Pineapple + Coconut Rum Seltzer; Passionfruit + Lime Vodka Seltzer; Strawberry + Kiwi Gin Seltzer and Apple + Lime Rum Seltzer.
Each 5% ABV 330ml can contains 99 calories, two grams of natural sugar and no artificial colours or flavour.
Founder and CEO of Gerry’s, Paul Wyber said: “We’re really excited to launch a fun and great tasting hard seltzer for those who want to enjoy having a good time with their friends, without all the calories that other alcoholic drinks have.”