The Famous Grouse will feature in two separate television adverts this festive season, a campaign which marks the biggest investment ever for the brand at this time of year.

Harlem Renaissance Wit is leaving New York for the first time and has joined Pierhead Drinks’ beer portfolio.

Fuller’s craft beer brands are seeing strong growth according to the brewer, which announced its half year results today.

Pinoeer Brewing Company, the craft and speciality division of AB InBev UK, has announced plans to launch a professional beer school. 

MP’s have come together to call for a duty cut to wine to support jobs and growth and provide a “level playing field” for the industry.

TWP introduces modern Abruzzo

17 November, 2016

TWP Wines is introducing PEMO, which it describes as a “modern Abruzzo”, that is designed to sit “at the quality end of the spectrum”.

Majestic Wine’s boss Rowan Gormley is confident his turnaround plan is working, even though the company has posted a £4.4m drop in profits for its first half.

Heineken has formed a partnership with Deliveroo, which means beer and cider is now available under a newly launched brand, Brew House.

Ehrmanns Wines has taken on distribution for Champagne brand Duval-Leroy in the UK off-trade.

The Johnnie Walker House has launched exclusively in the Wines & Spirits Room at Harrods, to offer whisky fans a bespoke blending experience.

Rathfinny Estate, the largest single estate vineyard in the UK, has appointed a new brand ambassador to create a ‘buzz’ around the name in advance of the launch of its first wines in 2018.

Jägermeister has launched a TV ad campaign designed to reach 18 to 34-year-old men in the run up to Christmas.

Luxury retailer Harrods has reported an upsurge in sales of premium port and believes more shoppers now see it as a wine to be enjoyed all year.

Big fat Greek wine festival

15 November, 2016

The second annual London Greek Wine festival attracted such crowds that the organisers plan to move next year’s event from October to July, in the hope that summer weather might open up more opportunities for food and wine matching.

Laithwaite’s Wine has unveiled “a better range of Champagne than we have ever had” in the run-up to Christmas.

The supermarket Christmas price war is already well underway as retailers have again chosen the BWS aisles as a key battleground to secure festive spend.

Scotland’s oldest winery has revamped its brand as part of its 30th anniversary celebrations and as a response to increased demand across the UK.

Heineken is launching a new on-pack promotion to highlight its partnership with UEFA Champions League to the off-trade.

OLN discovers how Beer Hawk has become successful enough to feather its nest for the future and its plans to target the retail trade with a variety of beers...

Wine could be the big winner if minimum unit pricing comes into force in Scotland, according to analysis from Nielsen.

The drinks industry can thrive going forwards by championing British products and continuing to work in partnership with government on social policies, according to leading trade commentators. 

Reducing the Strength schemes are on the ropes as the buzz around them has died down and retailers are feeling confident to resist. 

The chief executive of Virgin Wines has urged the wine trade to stop moaning about tough exchange rates and work harder to maintain profits.

Denbies Wine Estate has reported “exceptional” results from the 2016 harvest, and a record volume for its Ortega grape, which makes its award-winning dessert wine, Noble Harvest.

The Big Drop Brewing Co has kicked off its plans to create a portfolio of low alcohol beers with the launch of a Chocolate Milk Stout.

A leading independent drinks retailer has questioned why it is always the drinks industry that gets hit by charity health campaigns.

Brexit minister David Jones MP has promised he will do everything he can to ensure the drinks industry continues to thrive after Britain leaves the EU.

OLN publisher buys SITT

10 November, 2016

OLN publisher Agile Media has acquired SITT, the leading tasting for independent drinks merchants, from William Reed.

The head of the new team appointed to promote Californian wines in the UK says it will aim to give the state a greater year-round trade presence beyond its annual generic tasting.

Goose Island Beer Co is ramping up its focus on the off-trade, starting with a hop-based event in Tesco stores.

Anne Burchett has resigned as Managing Director UK & Ireland at Sopexa and will leave the company on November 10.

The creators of Coravin have taken over one of the big electronic billboards at London’s Piccadilly Circus to tell passers-by to Stop Screwing Around.

Diageo Reserve’s super-premium gin brand Tanqueray No. Ten has unveiled a new Caged Bottle gift pack for Christmas.

Asterley Bros is launching a ‘modern British Amaro’, described as ‘Sicily meets London’.

Hooper’s is entering the growing RTS (ready to serve) can market with its most popular flavour, Dandelion & Burdock.

Bowmore Islay Single malt Whisky has released its fifth and final edition of its exclusive Black Bowmore 1964 distillation.

A new team featuring Justin Knock MW, Damien Jackman, Rosamund Barton, Rupert Ponsonby and Sue Glasgow has been assembled to promote Californian wines in the UK.

Pinkster gin has bolstered in sales force and management team following a £1 million crowdfunding drive earlier this year.

Two of the five nominees for a newly launched Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) award for outstanding Diploma graduates come from the UK wine trade.

Morgenrot has bolstered its portfolio with the addition of a sparkling Albarino from north-west Spain.

The trend that has seen Brits choosing to drink beer at home rather than go to the pub has continued as off-trade beer sales grew 0.3% in volume in the year to September 2016.

Champagne Taittinger has announced a new partnership with the British Independent Film Awards.

Innis & Gunn has launched an equity crowdfunding campaign, which aims to raise £1m in equity; in addition it has revealed a new beer made from Scottish rainwater.

Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite) wines is gearing up for an enhanced presence in the UK following the appointment of a dedicated sales director.

Conviviality has reported sales up by 211% compared to the same period last year, as a result of its big acquisitions across the last 12 months.

Specialist wine importer Hallgarten Druitt & Novum has boosted its Italian portfolio with the addition of two new producers.

Marstons has overhauled its beer range with a striking new look in a bid to attract a new generation of drinkers.

Metaxa has relaunched its Metaxa 12 Stars expression in the UK, supported by the appointment of a new brand ambassador.

Dom Perignon has teamed up with German artist Michael Riedel to celebrate the power of transformation for its Blanc 2006 and Rose 2004.

Chile has leapfrogged Spain and South Africa to become the UK’s fifth largest wine supplier, while New Zealand and Argentina continue to enjoy surging sales.

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The shops that stand out from the madding crowd

The judges met last week to sort out the winners in the independent categories of our 2018 Drinks Retailing Awards. The results are top secret until the awards dinner on February 6 but it’s giving nothing away to report that the overall standard of those that will be revealed in the shortlist of finalists in the January issue of DRN is higher than it’s ever been.

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