2019 April

Waitrose looks set to be the first off-trade retailer to stock a Japanese vodka, following last year's milestone when it was the first to list a Japanese gin. 

Irish whiskey is a much talked about category at the moment and it’s easy to see why. In 2013 there were just four operational distilleries in Ireland but this has risen to 23, with the industry now supporting more than 350 jobs.

London’s only sake producer has launched its first ultra-premium sake.

Britons spent £41 million on Prosecco in the four weeks leading up to Easter, according to Nielsen.

Scotch Whisky’s contribution to the UK economy has grown by 10% since 2016 to £5.5 billion, according to a new report by the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA).

The flavoured and spiced rum sector will overtake white rum as the most popular type of rum bought in the off-trade by the end of 2019, according to the WSTA's latest Market Report. 

Emma Symington MW has been appointed as education development manager EMEA at Wine Australia.

Amstel has launched a new TV commercial starring Hollywood legend Jeff Bridges in the lead role as a human bridge.

Brighton Gin has launched a Navy Strength variant as consumers continue to seek out new styles and tastes in gin.

The wine industry should learn from the “extraordinary innovation and growth” in beer and spirits, according to the managing director of Chapel Down, Mark Harvey.

Cracking rosé

29 April, 2019

The New World has been steadily chipping away at the market share of traditional European wine- producing nations for several decades. But there’s one wine colour for which the Old World is

Lindeman’s is extending into the low/ no alcohol category with a 0.5% abv range and it has partnered with the Mindful Drinking group Club Soda.

Albourne Estate in Sussex claims to have launched “England’s first Frizzante”, as a result of last summer’s bumper harvest.

The clocks have gone forward, the sun is battling its way through the clouds and the season of barbecues, festivals and picnics is almost upon us. Drinks retailers are urged to stock up on RTDs to boost sales and margins ahead of this crucial trading period.

C&C’s minority stake in Jubel Beer will help reaffirm the start-up company’s mission to pioneer a new style of beer, according to co-founder Jesse Wilson.

We recently received a lovely drop of Jameson 18 Year Old Bow Street. It came in a huge box, accompanied with hefty rocks glasses and the added fanfare of a massive bag of cheese. The dairy delights inspired a cheese joke session, which ended with an explosion at a French cheese factory – and all that was left was de brie. Even our dignity had evaporated. 

Campo Viejo is the latest producer to tap into the UK's love of Provence-style rosé wines.

London urban winery Blackbook Winery claims its is releasing “the first London-grown London-made wine since Roman times”.

The Competition and Markets Authority's (CMA's) decision to block the merger of Sainsbury’s and Asda is short-sighted, according to a supply chain and logistics expert.

Rum continues to be cited as “the next big trend” for the UK spirits market and a raft of activity this month indicates producers are backing this theory.

The Majestic Wine store in Wakefield has been transformed into a Naked Wines showroom as part of a trial from the group.

Diageo is working with a flavour house in Italy’s Piedmont hills area, with the aim of focusing on a raft of concepts and trends starting with the launch of a “very accessible gin”.

Badger beer has launched a digital competition that will send 54 winners on a camping weekend in Dorset.

Aldi has relaunched some of the most popular Scottish craft gin and beer brands from the in-store festivals it hosted last year.

Chaos in the bottle shops

23 April, 2019

Specialist craft beer retailers have likened placing orders for the latest beers from certain big-name breweries to the scramble to secure Glastonbury tickets, amid concerns that parts of the wholesale market are becoming overheated.

Pernod Ricard has bought the Italian super premium gin brand Malfy.

Diageo is introducing Smirnoff Infusions, creating a range for the Smirnoff portfolio that is designed to be mixed with soda to create a lower calorie finished serve.

New Zealand Winegrowers, Loire Valley and Centre Loire Wines joined forces for a joint celebration of the myriad wonders of Sauvignon Blanc today.

“Our generation have trust issues because we were raised on those awesome adverts saying Carlsberg is the best lager in the world only to finally taste the shit and realise it’s like drinking the bath water that your nan died in,” wrote an enlightened gentleman called Roy on Twitter recently.

Cider has a “clear opportunity” to introduce more shoppers into the category and there is room for both apple and fruit cider to grow in tandem, according to Thatchers Cider.