As summer approaches, consumers are likely to gravitate towards drinks with a lighter, fresher taste.

While seasonal changes in consumer behaviour can be beneficial for some drinks categories, whisky and Cognac currently account for only 7% of the serves linked to the consumer desire for a summer sip.

While dark spirits are often overlooked in the summer months, the opportunities for this highly versatile category extend far beyond winter in the form of fresher serves that make the most of the diverse range of refreshing mixers on the market.


Edrington UK, the UK’s leading whisky and Cognac supplier, explores the potential of dark spirits in its recently launched podcast series – The Stillhouse Podcast.

Hosted by spirits expert and Our Whisky founder Becky Paskin, Edrington UK’s Natural Refreshment episode is centred on wider trends of wellbeing and ‘less but better’ drinking as consumers are more discerning than ever about what they choose to purchase. These needs can be met by longer, lighter serves with cues of naturally-derived and fresh-tasting ingredients.

In this episode, Becky is joined by co-founder of Idyll Drinks, Marcis Dzelzainis, as well as hospitality and beverage industry veteran, Thomas Soden, to debunk the preconception that dark spirits can only be drunk neat, while offering advice on how to mix dark spirits for fresher tasting result. 

Highlighting the flexibility of dark spirits, Becky, Marcis and Thomas emphasise the importance of championing mixers that elevate dark spirits without masking the depth of flavour. 

As many consumers start to favour natural drinks with fewer additives, the trio explore refreshing mixing options with naturally-derived ingredients that are ideal for pairing with dark spirits in the warmer months, including unexpected alternatives to well-known mixers such as cola.

From Fever Tree to The London Essence, they delve into the expansive selection of unique mixers available to consumers which can couple perfectly with dark spirits for a fresh twist on classic spirit-based serves. 

By zooming in on the possibilities for dark spirits and mixers in summer, this episode demonstrates how the trade can drive year-round consumption of dark spirits through consumer education, while also offering creative serving ideas for curious drinkers.  


As leaders in the dark spirit category, Edrington UK launched The Stillhouse Podcast to reflect its Category Vision 2025.

Our aim is to support businesses across the on and off-trade to realise the full potential of the dark spirits category, while sparking conversations among the trade and consumers.

The initial series will feature nine episodes, each of which are based on the nine growth drivers identified in Edrington UK’s Category Vision. 

Every episode will feature guest appearances from key figures at the heart of the drinks and hospitality industry, with engaging conversations centred around opportunities in the dark spirits category. 

Offering thought-provoking insights for consumers and the drinks industry alike, listeners can expect an array of engaging conversations that delve into the diverse and exciting dark spirits category.

The Stillhouse Podcast is available to listen to on Spotify.