New drinks launches - January
Here’s the low-down on the latest beer, cider, wine, spirits, no/low and RTD product launches:
USP: The high-strength gin is intended to create a low alcohol serve with an intense flavour. The gin has been distilled with ten times the botanicals for a big flavour, meaning gin drinkers only need a ‘Smidgin’. The bottle comes with a 2.5ml copper spoon to create the ideal measure for a low alcohol G&T.
Kopparberg Mixed Fruit Tropical Alcohol Free
£3 (4x33cl cans)
USP: "An exotic twist on the classic Kopparberg favourite, Mixed Fruit Tropical Alc-Free is bursting with the bold and tangy flavours of pineapple, passionfruit, and mango."
Mocktails nitro-charged slim cans
£26.99 (12 X 20cl cans)
USP: Alcohol-free RTD brand Mocktails has launched a range of classic cocktail-inspired mocktails in nitro-charged cans. The range comprises Mockarita, Mockapolitan, Mockscow Mule and Sansgria.
Accolade’s Vino Società ‘Wine on Tap’
£16 (1.5l bag-in-box)
USP: Carbon neutral Vino Società has launched with two SKUs - Sauvignon Blanc and Rosato, with a Malbec expected to follow later this year. The 1.5l pack stays fresh for up to six weeks after opening and uses “80% lighter packaging versus two average industry glass bottles”.
Rathfinny 2018 Classic Cuvée
USP: “Our 2018 Classic Cuvée was crafted around Pinot Noir, with ripe fruits and a low dosage which is becoming synonymous with the Rathfinny house style,” said Sarah Driver, co-owner of Rathfinny Wine Estate.
SPIRITS & LIQUEURS
The English Whisky Co Virgin Oak
USP: According to The English Whisky Co, virgin oak is not often used in the world of whisky making. “A virgin cask adds vanilla notes and creates a quite unique whisky,” the company said. “A bit of a favourite among the team at the distillery.” The release is limited to 300 bottles.
Shropshire Distillery’s After Noon liqueurs
USP: Shropshire Distillery (formerly Shire Gin) has released two liqueurs under the new After Noon brand. The launch comprises cold brewed coffee liqueur and citrus grey tea liqueur. Distiller Emma Glynn made the liqueurs with the help of Shrewsbury-based Aroma Tea & Coffee Merchants.
USP: Hollywood film director Paul Feig has launched a gin in the UK. Artingstall’s was made in collaboration with Minhas micro distillery in the US and it contains 11 botanicals, including coriander, cassia bark and cardamom.
Wemyss Malts Extremely Rare Single Cask whiskies
£88 - £300
The range comprises:
Bananas and Cream - a grain whisky from Strathclyde distillery
Clove Studded Oranges - from Speyside, Glenrothes distillery
Jam on Toast - from the Highland distillery of Blair Athol
Kiwi and Chilli - from Speyside, Glenrothes Distillery
Sweet Disposition - from Speyside, Glen Keith Distillery
Ultimate Apple Pie - from Speyside, Glen Moray distillery
The Balvenie Tun 1509 Batch 8
USP: This is the eighth and final bottling in the Tun 1509 series. “Batch 8 encapsulates 18 of the finest and most rare casks from the distillery stocks, married together in the Tun – a large oak marrying vessel.”
Darnley's gin pouches
From 40% abv
From £28 (70CL)
USP: Darnley’s gin has launched recyclable pouches as part of its 2022 sustainability strategy. The gin pouches are available in 70cl for each of the Darnley’s Original (40% abv, £28), Spiced (42.7% abv, £30) and Navy Strength (57.1% abv, £33) gins.
Dead Man's Fingers Raspberry Rum Cream Liqueur
USP: The new liqueur from Halewood Artisanal Spirits is described as a “rum-based cream liqueur with aromas of fresh raspberries”. The pastel pink bottle features the Dead Man’s Fingers skull branding, bringing a “bolder image and personality to the more traditional cream liqueurs category”.
Spearhead Vusa vodka and Bayab gin
40% abv and 43% abv
£23.99 and £29.99
USP: Black-owned African spirits company Spearhead aims to showcase the “best of Africa’s craft and produce, pioneering for authentic diversity in the drinks sector”. Vusa is made using sugarcane from Kwazulu-Natal, while Bayab takes inspiration from the Baobab tree. These spirits use botanicals from across the continent and are distilled and bottled in Africa.
Bathtub Gin Grapefruit & Rosemary
USP: “The process to establish the first ever flavoured version of Bathtub Gin saw the brand turn to their consumers and utilise crowdsourcing to develop a foundational understanding of what they would like the brand to produce, and the types of flavour profiles that the public were interested in drinking.”
Tarquin’s Black Cherry Gin
USP: "Black cherries have a powerful, complex yet sweet flavour, so I was intrigued to see how this could be expressed in a spirit. The result is a very special, rich and vibrant gin with a beautiful depth," said founder Tarquin Leadbetter.
Eden Mill Matchday blended whisky and Hibernian Dry Gin
USP: Scottish distiller Eden Mill has launched a limited-edition whisky for fans of Hibernian FC to “celebrate some of their most iconic memories”. There are only 800 bottles available. The company has also launched Matchday Spirit Hibernian Dry Gin, for those who prefer gin.
Cù Bòcan Creation #3 and #4
USP: The Cù Bòcan Creation series has added Creation #3, matured in Moroccan Cabernet Sauvignon and North American Rye casks and Creation #4, which has been matured in a combination of tawny port and cognac casks.
Four Roses Small Batch Select
USP: Two years after it launched in the US, Four Roses Small Batch Select has made it to the UK. The UK is the only market outside the US where the bourbon is available, and it is limited to 3,000 bottles.
BEER & CIDER
Thatchers 2021 Cider Barn Collection additions
The Classics – 8.4% abv
USP: The Classics is made from a blend of 26 different traditional apple varieties, grown in a single orchard in Somerset. Varieties include Broxwood Foxwhelp, White Jersey and Cider Ladies Finger.
Thatchers Redstreak – 8.4% abv
USP: This is a re-release, “back by popular demand”. Made using Somerset Redstreak apples, the cider was Supreme Champion in the 2017 International Cider Challenge.
Thatchers Grenadier – 7.4% abv
USP: Grenadier is described as a “crisp bright green eating apple” and Thatchers says it produces a “gentle wine-like sparkling 7.4% cider”.
BrewDog Lost Infused lager
£9 (8x44cl mixed cans)
USP: BrewDog has launched a range of fruit-infused lagers under its Lost brand. The range includes Lost in Guava, Lost in Blood Orange and Lost in Lime & Lychee – and it has rolled out via Sainsbury’s.
Docks Beers Low Tide
USP: The 3.5% session pale ale is the lowest abv beverage from the Grimsby brewery and has been brewed deliberately to ease beer drinkers out of Dry January and into February, and to celebrate the brave work of RNLI Cleethorpes.
MIXERS & ADULT SOFT DRINKS
Punchy Drinks’ Easy Sunday
USP: “Punchy's limited edition new flavour, Easy Sunday, has a blackcurrant base, with zesty lemon and balancing basil, resulting in a refreshing and complex flavour profile.”
Ful Spirulina Fizz
£20.92 (six bottles)
USP: Ful Spirulina Fizz is a new range of three “non-alcoholic, climate positive spirulina-laced sparkling RTDs”. The drinks contain calcium, plant-based protein, iron, magnesium, vitamin B2 and antioxidants. Flavours comprise White peach, Lemon & ginger and Lime & mint. The drinks can be used as mixers in cocktails, the company said.
Virtue Clean Energy – Tropical
£1.40 (25cl can)
USP: Virtue Tropical contains 80mg of caffeine derived from green coffee beans. The drink contains zero sugar and zero calories, and it is enhanced with b-vitamins and naturally sweetened. Tropical joins flavours including Lemon & Lime and Berries.
Artisan Drinks’ Yuzu Tokyo Tonic
£4.50 (6 x 20cl)
USP: Artisan Drinks has added Yuzu Tokyo Tonic to its line up of mixers. The company has also launched its 20cl cans in Ocado.
Buzzed energy tonic water
USP: “In contrast to most leading energy drinks which use synthetic caffeine, Buzzed’s caffeine source is 100% naturally retrieved, extracted from natural plant sources, but still boasts more caffeine per 100ml than the UK’s leading energy brand,” the company said. Buzzed is sweetened with honey and stevia.