It’s that time of the year again!

Yes, Brand Genetics recently attended the annual Spirit Show.  Strategically timed in early December, the Spirit Show is the platform which tells us what’s up-and-coming in the world of alcohol and spirits.  Never being one to turn down an opportunity for public service, BG felt obliged to investigate and distil (pun fully intended) the 5 key trends to keep an eye on during 2018.  Cheers!

1. ‘GIN’TRIFICATION

London’s favourite tipple is not going anywhere any time soon! In fact, brands are getting more and more creative with the ingredients, flavours and processes that go into making an excellent gin. So prepare yourself for some unusual and interesting G&T’s.  Brands to look out for:

Wrecking Coast Clotted Cream Gin
  • CollaGinOxford based ‘Gintrepreneurs’ Young In Spirit are the creators behind the world’s first alcoholic drink that combines gin with pure collagen. With anti-ageing botanicals (star anise, pink grapefruit and orris) and the addition of pure collagen, this “skin & tonic” will have you glowing!
  • Gunpowder Irish Gin: “Oriental botanicals, Gunpowder tea and Irish curiosity” have come together to create this crisp gin from Drumshanbo, Ireland. With a total of 12 botanicals added during differentstages of the process, this handmade gin is slowly distilled in medieval copper pots and is not something to miss out on.
  • Clotted Cream Gin: This gin from The Wrecking Coast is distilled with a classic Cornish ingredient – clotted cream! The cream, added during the distilling process, produces a smooth and velvety liquid that not only gives you hints of vanilla and butterscotch, but also creates a unique texture in your mouth as you drink it.

2. ALL ABOUT ABSINTHE
‘The Green Fairy’ is making its way into the spotlight again, with both consumers and distillers taking more of an interest in hopes to revolutionise the famously fictional hallucinogenic spirit.

Wave your wand in the direction of these beauties:

  • La Maison Fontaine Absinthe: Whether green or white, La Maison Fontaine has a range of premium absinthes, handcrafted in Pontarlier, France. Both can be served in cocktails or mixed with water slowly dripped from an absinthe fountain.  La Maison Fontaine also produces a chocolate absinthe liqueur as the sweet toothed family member.
  • La Fee Absinthe: La Fée Parisienne is a classic absinthe distilled with 100% all natural herbs and, of course, wormwood. It was created in collaboration with Marie-Claude Delahaye, the French Absinthe Museum’s founder and curator, to ensure authenticity and quality.
  • Jade Liqueurs: With hopes of answering myths and rumours about absinthe, Jade Liqueurs have come up with a range of classic, all natural and high end absinthes. Using scientific methods and sophisticated techniques, Jade has crafted an immaculate range of different absinthes.

3. ORGANIC OVERLOAD

Transparency of ingredients is important for consumers, which is why some brands will do everything in their power to create a sustainable, organic and high quality product that showcases that. According to this year’s Spirit Show, perfected ingredients and attention to detail capture the consumer’s curiosity.

Ones to try:

BTW Tonic Water
  • BTW Tonic: With Quinine extracted directly from the South American Cinchona bark, using only heat and water, BTW has created a tonic water that is organicand unbleached. This leaves the tonic looking carmalised and produces a balanced flavour for the perfect gin and tonic.
  • Sobolinaya Organic Vodka: With an attention-grabbing bottle (created to reproduce the illusion of the Northern Lights), Sobolinaya is an organic French vodka made with citrus, fennel and purified water drawn from 160 metres underground.
  • Breil Pur: This organic Swiss gin is made with bio-botanicals from alpine juniper, roses and chocolate mint. The Briel Pur butterfly, after which the gin is named, feeds off
    spruce and juniper, which is of course the main component of gin!

 

4. SWEET TOOTH

While some brands prefer to stick to the classic notes of citrus and floral, others choose the road less travelled – liquid desserts.  From a shot of liquid cake to a nice chocolate wine, these niche brands are based on the premise that “A life without sweets is not much worth living.”

Key brands to watch:

  • Zeolla Chocolate Wine: What happens when you put together a French sparkling white wine and Belgian Chocolate? This!  Chocolate in a Bottle…
  • VodCake: No longer will you have to make the agonising decision between dessert and vodka! This family run business has created a novel product combing cake and vodka.  The Tiramisu is wonderfully decadent.
  • LeJay Cassis: Tasting like a wonderfully adult Ribena, LeJay capitalize on their 150+ years of experience to deliver the perfect ingredient for a Kir Royal.

5. RUM ROW

Whilst most spirits have an interesting brand story, one of the few spirits that embody a sense of history and culture is rum. If you are ever looking to embrace the free spirited and relaxing attitude of the Caribbean, then look no further!

Here is what caught our attention:

Caroni small bath rum from Trinidad
  • Small Batch Rare Rums: Caroni is small batch rum, matured in three different stages within Trinidad. This slow maturation process produces a flavour that has sweet tasting notes of floral, sherry, black liquorish, pepper and leather.
  • Koko Kanu Coconut Rum: Jamaica is not only a country known for its white rums, but also for its use of tropical flavours. Koko Kanu is steeped with coconut and then aged for a minimum of one year before being filtered through charcoal, which is a natural way to achieve its crystal clear colour.
  • Old Man Rum: With each bottle costing around £4,000, this limited edition rum is created by combining seven exceptional rums from Barbados, Guyana and Jamaica. The youngest of the rums is aged 25 years – while the other six range from 26 to 33 years!

That should be enough to keep us going until next December.

On behalf of everyone at Brand Genetics, have a very Merry Christmas – and see you in 2018!

We are looking forward to Christmas THIS much!
Author

Marc is the Director of Strategy for Brand Genetics. He is an insight & innovation specialist with a track record of driving value in products and brands through strategic planning and creative ideation.

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