The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) is calling on politicians to give the scotch whisky industry the support it needs to ensure it remains a ‘great British success story’.

WSTA chief executive officer Miles Beale believes the UK can use Brexit to boost spirit export numbers after 45 new distilleries emerged in 2016.

Britvic believes that consumers choosing ‘healthier living and moderate drinking’ is the reason for the increase in sales for 2016.

The Wine and Spirit Education Trust will host the first WSET Week USA from May 1-7, 2017.

The International Bulk Wine and Spirits Show will return to London in February 2018 for trade professionals to source private and commercial suppliers.

Forecasts for future growth in wine and spirits consumption to 2020 show the Americas and Asia Pacific are the countries to concentrate on, according to recent IWSR research.

The Distilled Spirits Council has said it looks forward to working with the Trump administration to expand access for US agricultural exports, including distilled spirits, in foreign markets.  

Soju brand Jinro has been named the top-selling spirit in the world in the Millionaires’ Club 2016, after selling 73.8m 9-litre last year.

Brown-Forman has announced that Eric Helms has become marketing director for its Global Travel Retail division.

Altia, the leading Nordic and Baltic wine and spirits company, has appointed Kai Telanne to its board of directors.

Waco craft whisky distiller Balcones has a new distillery site, in what was formerly the old four-story Texas Fireproof Storage Building.

The New Standard

16 March, 2016

Standard spirits sales are growing but small budgets mean its often up to the bottle to do the talking. Hamish Smith reports.

The Educator

04 March, 2016

The Wine and Spirits Education Trust’s Ian Harris is a man on a mission. Disciple Christian Davis catches up with the missionary

Tuesday 1st March | The Hospital Club, London

Agenda

Time

Activity

9.30am Think Gin Opens
9.45am -11.00am Maximising Returns from Your Gin Portfolio - Debate
11.45am- 12.15pm The Gin Tasting Wheel - Masterclass
12.45pm - 1.30pm Awards Presentation
1.30pm - 2.15pm Lunch
2.30pm - 3.45pm What Do Bartenders Want from Gin - Debate
4.00pm - 4.30pm International Gins - Masterclass
4.30pm - 5.00pm Break
5.00pm - 5.45pm Tonic and Serve - Masterclass
6.00pm Think Gin Closes 

Winners of the 2016 Think Gin Awards

Best Gin Retailer (Multiple Sites)

Winner: Waitrose 

Sponsored by Edinburgh Gin

Best Gin Retailer (Independent)

Winner: Gerry’s Wines & Spirits

Sponsored by Adnams

Best Gin Bar (Multiple Sites) 

Winner: Hogarths

Sponsored by Warner Edwards

Best Gin Bar (Independent) 

Winner: Merchant House

Sponsored by Amathus Drinks

Best Gin Wholesaler

Winner: Enotria&Coe 

Sponsored by Marussia Beverages UK

Gin Communicator 

Winner: David T Smith

Sponsored by Fever-Tree

2016 Sponsors:

10 Degrees C

10 Degrees C specialises in brands of the highest quality and with real provenance. The portfolio includes Gins from the UK, and Belgium, as well as a unique and exciting Tonic Water, and Botanicals specifically designed for the serious Gin drinker.

www.10degreesc.com

Adnams

Adnams plc, a respected brewer, distiller and retailer, is an independent values-based family business committed to a sustainable future. It has been brewing from its base at Southwold on the Suffolk coast for over 100 years and produces a range of cask and bottled beers and award-winning spirits, which are available in pubs and supermarkets nationwide. The company has an estate of 50 pubs, 3 hotels and self-catering accommodation and a chain of 12 successful retail stores. For further information about Adnams visit: www.adnams.co.uk

About our Distillery: Innovative as ever, Adnams is the first brewer in England to add a distillery to its brewery. Established in 2010, the distillery has been uniquely designed to create a “Grain to Glass” spirit using locally grown malted barley, wheat and oats. The “distillery wash” which forms the base for our spirits, actually starts life as our 7% abv, un-hopped beer, produced using Adnams own 70-year old yeast strain. This is then distilled in small batches in our hand-made copper stills and rectifying columns to produce hand-crafted spirits with exceptional quality.

www.adnams.co.uk 

Amathus

Established in 1978, the Amathus Drinks Group is a privately owned, London based national drinks distributor, importer and specialist retailer. We are proud to be the drinks supplier of choice for many prestigious on-trade clients such as Michelin starred restaurants, 5 star hotels, country gastropubs, clubs and trendy city bars. We are also increasingly supplying more specialist retail outlets with our premium agency spirits and growing wine collection.


In addition to our online shop, we also have four retail stores located in the vibrant and trendy areas around London, offering you access to exclusive events, masterclasses, click and collect service and free local delivery to enjoy as part of your shopping experience.


With our product lines in excess of 3000, we are able to supply a wide range of well-known brands. However, our real point of differentiation from other drinks’ distributors are our exclusive agency brands which range from premium spirits such as Calle 23 tequila to Ron Barcelo Rum and boutique wine producers such as Idiom and Elk Cove. We continually expand our exciting and unique portfolio and services, to provide a complete drinks solution nationwide.

www.amathusdrinks.com

BCN

The distillery 'Aguavida Llops', located in the Priorat, is one of the few craft distilleries of Catalonia and stands for supporting innovation without fear to recover a lost tradition, being recognized for its expertise in the distillation of wine lees from the wines of ‘El Priorat’, and its selected native varieties Garnatxa and Carinyena.

'Aguavida Llops' presents a new style of gin with personality: BCN Prior Barcelona Dry GIN. Distilled in El Priorat, savoured in Barcelona. An evocation of the modernist spirit and a style that is only possible to live in Barcelona, the capital of G&T’s.

www.bcngin.com

Berlin Dry Gin

Since 2009, native born Berliner Vincent Honrodt has been carrying forth his family´s heritage in the spirits industry, dating back to the early 20th century. In the 1920’s, Honrodt‘s great-grandfather was the director of a sugar factory, where he enthusiastically began distilling fine spirits from local grains and sugar cane. His creations are still kept alive to this day and continue to carry on their excellence through the Berliner Brandstifter spirits.

Berliner Brandstifter is committed to the development and production of exceptionally fine distillates, which embody the spirit of Berlin. All ingredients for both - the Berliner Brandstifter Kornbrand and the Berlin Dry Gin - come either directly from Berlin or from surrounding areas. The spirits undergo a 7fold filtration and are bottled, labeled and numbered by hand.

www.berlinerbrandstifter.com 

Blackdown Artisan Spirits

Blackdown Distillery is an innovative award-wining producer of finely crafted spirits; creators of unique drinks striving for quality, refinement and provenance. Established in 2012, Blackdown Distillery is nestled in the foothills of Blackdown Hill, South Down National Park, West Sussex. 

A luxurious collection of distinctive spirits are handcrafted in small batches in the oldest distillery in Sussex, can only be described as poetic, set amid a sprawling ancient woodland near where Lord Alfred Tennyson once lived; writer of such epic works as Charge of the Light Brigade.

The surrounding 40 acres of ancient woodland bursting with Silver Birch trees are the inspiration for the first ever Sussex Dry Gin, Silver Birch Vermouth and Silver Birch Vodka. Also included within the portfolio are, Liqueurs, Meads, Botanical Wines and Regency Bitters.

We pride ourselves on using only natural botanicals, focusing on quality and provenance. They are proud to use only British suppliers for all its ingredients and packaging, ensuring that these products are truly British.

With over 50 years combined experience, Blackdown also provides counstulatancy, brand devolpement works as a nursery for start up brands.

“Distilled from the heart and are handcrafted in small batches”

www.blackdowncellar.co.uk

bottlegreen

bottlegreen Mixer Collection Lets the Gin Sing!

From the heart of the Cotswolds, bottlegreen has been proudly making refreshing soft drinks for more than 26 years. Using crafted wine-making techniques, bottlegreen mixers have been developed with one pure objective: to let the gin ‘sing’.

Each of the four bottlegreen mixers is blended to enhance and enrich rather than overpower the qualities of high-end spirits. By working in harmony with the flavour of the gin, they allow the gin to be enjoyed as created by the master distiller, and offer gin & tonic drinkers the perfect accompaniment to their favourite premium gin.

bottlegreen’s resident wine-maker has developed three layers of flavour for each mixer that are specifically designed to work on different parts of the palate, whilst complementing the vast array of botanicals present in high quality gins.

All bottlegreen mixers have high carbonation levels which deliver a long lasting refreshing drink, and only natural ingredients are used - they contain no artificial colours, preservatives, flavours and sweeteners.

www.bottlegreendrinks.com

Brockmans Gin

Brockmans Gin – ‘like no other’

Brockmans Gin, the ‘gin like no other’, brims with berries and botanicals so is perfect for cocktails as well as a classic G&T or Martini and delicious served neat on the rocks. 

Brockmans is a 40% A.B.V. super-premium gin, distilled using quality botanicals. The over-riding flavour profile that make Brockmans so unique is derived from an intriguing and unique bond of flavours created from ingredients drawn from across Europe 

The top note of Bulgarian coriander has an aromatic, gingery orange flavour, which marries beautifully with the softer, more rounded harmonies of blueberries and blackberries and the bottom note created by Juniper berries from Tuscany. This inspired combination, together with the dry, bitter-sweet peel of Valencian oranges, elongates the deeper tones and serve to give Brockmans an intensely smooth, distinctive and elegant taste.

www.brockmansgin.com

Caorunn Gin (Balmenach Distillery)

Caorunn Gin is expertly handcrafted in small batches of 1,000 litres a time by Gin Master Simon Buley at Balmenach Distillery, a working malt whisky distillery in the Speyside region of the Scottish Highlands.
Harnessing Scotland’s unique natural resources, Caorunn is infused to perfection in our unique Copper Berry Chamber, using the highest quality triple-distilled pure grain spirit, crystal clear Scottish water, six traditional (Juniper, Orange and Lemon peel, Angelica root, Coriander, Cassia bark) and five, wild, handpicked botanicals from the surrounding hills (Rowan Berries, Coul Blush Apple, Heather, Dandelion, Bog Myrtle).

Caorunn is an aromatic taste adventure with a long dry finish, its delicate fruit, floral notes evoke the charm of the Scottish Highlands, and its cocktails engage the most discerning palate with nuanced, sophisticated notes.

Caorunn G&T is uniquely served with a freshly cut red apple to enhance its invigorating, dry and crisp taste. 41.8% ABV

www.caorunngin.com

Colombo

Colombo Gin is a definitive London Dry Gin with an unusual list of ingredients. The Juniper is distinctive in taste and aroma; surrounded by a beautiful medley of subtle spice notes that, together, create an unexpected harmony. Our Gin is handcrafted in small batches from copper pot stills to create a distinctively exceptional .distilled London Dry Gin.

www.colombogin.com

Dà Mhìle

Dà Mhìle, - famed for the first organic whisky of the modern world - have been making organic artisan spirits in their converted cow shed on the family farm in west Wales. Since 1992 the aim has been to create an ultra-premium product with minimal impact on the environment. 

www.damhile.co.uk

Edinburgh Gin

Distilled in the beating heart of Scotland’s magical capital and recalling a bygone era when Edinburgh was awash with distilling wizardry and classic cocktails like the Fizz and the Daisy were all the rage, Edinburgh Gin is a gin quite unlike any other.


Made the time-honoured way, but in a near legendary 200 year old copper pot still named Flora, alongside column still Caledonia, our master distiller expertly marries the finest Scotch grain spirit with fantastically fresh juniper, coriander, citrus peel and orris root.


And the wonderment that distinguishes our libation from any others? Inspired by both Scotland’s majestic capital and the breathtaking, unspoilt countryside beyond, we add soft Scottish botanicals, including milk thistle, native Scots pine and the heather that carpets our hillsides in purple. The Edinburgh Gin range also includes the Raspberry, Elderflower and Rhubarb & Ginger liqueurs, all packed full of the finest natural flavours and perfect in cocktails.

www.edinburghgindistillery.co.uk

Fentimans

Fentimans have been making natural botanical beverages for over 100 years. To make our drinks, we pair selected botanicals with the finest natural ingredients. Our drinks are then brewed with passion and care for seven days, using the time honoured botanical brewing process. The results are drinks that taste simply delicious.

www.fentimans.com

Fever-Tree

Since launching in 2005, Fever-Tree has pioneered a whole new category of premium mixers. Their multi-award winning range of tonics is endorsed around the world by bartenders, chefs and gastronomes alike. Proudly served in 7 of the World’s top ten restaurants, Fever-Tree was recently voted the No.1 Selling and No.1 Trending tonic water brand by The World’s 50 Best Bars Annual Report – commanding its category for the second year running.  Fever-Tree's   emphasis on taste and quality remains unparalled - they continue to innovate the category, using only the highest quality natural ingredients from small specialist producers to create tonics that complement the finest gins. After all, if 3/4 of your G&T is tonic, mix with the best. 

www.fever-tree.com

Gin Bolskan

From The Pyrennes´ foothills has born this small batch distilled gin which name is given by the Celtiberian origin of the city of Huesca. Bolskan is a triple distilled gin from eleven botanicals, the most distinctive being juniper, basil and peach, very traditional crops of our Region. The result is a fresh and elegant gin.

www.bolskangin.com

Locksley Distilling Co.

Locksley Distilling Co. Ltd. are developers, distillers, and purveyors of fine artisan spirits. Yorkshire at heart with New York soul!

The vision for our first gin, Sir Robin of Locksley, was to create a multi-purpose sipping gin, not as dry as a London Dry, nor as sweet as an Old Tom. We wanted to produce a gin with a clean, rounded mouthfeel, something that could be enjoyed on its own, or as part of a great cocktail.

Named in honour of our local legend, Sir Robin of Locksley® Distilled Artisan Gin is gin has up front juniper with more delicate flavours of elderflower, pink grapefruit, and dandelion. It is a gratifyingly balanced yet unique gin. Whilst it may not be everyone’s cup of tea to drink straight gin, with our focus on versatility and sipability we feel that Sir Robin goes that extra yard, offering something truly #leGINdary.

www.locksleydistilling.com

Martin Miller's

Martin Miller’s Gin was developed by friends Martin Miller, David Bromige and Andreas Versteegh who sought a superb, high quality gin that was nowhere to be found in the market prior to 1999. Once launched, it became the pioneer of “new wave” and “super premium” gin, setting off the gin renaissance that rejuvenated the moribund spirit and catapulted it into the spotlight it enjoys today. Martin Miller’s Gin features a classic flavour profile with perfectly balanced notes of citrus and juniper and is the only gin blended using pure, live Icelandic Spring water. The brand has received more top prizes and awards than any other gin in the world1 and is the most expensive gin to produce -- offering consumers the greatest overall value of any premium gin. With a global presence in more than 55 countries across all continents, Martin Miller’s is the biggest independent gin brand in the world.

www.martinmillersgin.com

Marussia

‘Marussia Beverages is a producer and distributor of fine wines and spirits. Trading through its own distribution network in four countries including Russia. UK, France, Georgia, and through a network of well established distribution channels in more than 20 other countries worldwide.

Marussia Beverages UK Ltd is the number one importer of very special spirits in the UK and part of Marussia Beverages BV. Previously known as Eaux de Vie, Marussia Beverages UK Ltd now imports the largest range of premium spirits into the United Kingdom.’

www.marussiabeverages.co.uk

Mason's Gin

Setup by husband and wife team, Karl and Cathy Mason, with the aim of creating a gin that they would want and choose to drink.

The mission was simple. They wanted to do away with boring generic gins and instead come up with something that was truly exciting, worthy of their hard work and of their home turf in God's own country.
3 and a half years later Masons is growing faster than ever with the introduction on its 2nd birthday of Masons Yorkshire Vodka, Masons Yorkshire Gin – Lavender Edition, Masons Yorkshire Gin – Tea edition (using Yorkshire Tea).

www.masonsyorkshiregin.com

Maverick

“Maverick Drinks returns to Think Gin for the second year to showcase some of their favourite gins from their remarkable and award-winning range of craft spirits that have soared in popularity over the past year. Products like Professor Cornelius Ampleforth’s Bathtub Gin, St George Terroir Gin, FEW Barrel Gin, and more will all be available to try (and enjoy).

In addition, Maverick Drinks will be bringing their now-famous Drinks by the Dram Ginvent Calendar, as well as their newly-released 1897 Quinine Gin, the first gin to incorporate quinine that directly benefits Malaria No More UK in the fight to end the epidemic. Drinking well and doing some good at the same time!

Have a chat with us to understand how working with quality craft spirits can help excite your customers, inspire your team, and ultimately, increase your profitability.”

www.maverickdrinks.com

Pinkster Gin

Distilled in small batches, Pinkster is a premium gin that stands out from the pack We hand-steep fresh, locally grown raspberries in the core spirit at our Cambridge HQ. The gin is deliciously dry, with a hint of fruit and an exceptionally smooth finish. There’s raspberry on the nose as the juniper comes through and then a slight spice that develops
 and lingers. For a refreshingly different gin and tonic, serve with Fever-Tree, a raspberry and a sprig of well-spanked fresh mint. Best of all, we recycle the inebriated raspberries selling them as Boozy Berries. 

Our trade accounts repeatedly tell us that our distinctive colour and flavour profile create a talking point. Coupled with our eye-catching design, this gives us great stand out on the back bar or on shelf. 
Welcome to the natural gin with the mischievous grin.

Available from leading wholesalers.

www.pinkstergin.com

Speciality Brands

www.specialitybrands.com

Warner Edwards

W.E. are Warner Edwards – best friends and craft distillers. From our 200-year-old converted barn in the heart of Northamptonshire Curiosity, our magnificent copper pot still, works her magic. She takes home-grown elderflower and natural spring water from our farms in England and Wales and combines them with pure grain spirit and 10 other botanicals to produce our beautiful Harrington Dry Gin. We then use this as the base for our Harrington Sloe, Elderflower Infused and Victoria’s Rhubarb Gins.

www.warneredwards.com

Tullamore DEW, the Irish whiskey owned by William Grant & Sons, has open the doors of its distillery to the public with the launch of its Ultimate Distillery Experience.

The SWA opens London office

03 December, 2015

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) opens its London office today (December 3).

Marie Brizard Wine & Spirits has recorded a third quarter of contrasts, with improvements in France but penalisation in the US and Poland. 

Brown-Forman yesterday welcomed guests to the site of its new $50m Irish whisky operation, Slane Distillery, which it hopes could create a brand to challenge the top brands of the category.

Catalyst Brands has signed a distribution agreement with Gautier Cognac to distribute its VS, VSOP and XO Cognacs exclusively throughout the UK.

The world’s largest premium drinks company has announced a net sales increase of 5% for the year ended June 30.

Suntory Holdings has announced the sale of cognac group Louis Royer to the family group Terroirs Distillers, a privately-held fine spirits company based in France.

Leading gin brand Beefeater is calling on the world’s top bartenders to enter this year’s Beefeater MIXLDN Global Bartender Cocktail Competition.

The UK alcohol market has returned to growth following years of continuous decline, according to the latest WSTA market report. 

Beefeater London Sounds is the name of the gin brand's latest limited edition.

The UK’s Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) says it will be celebrating the seventh annual World Gin Day tomorrow by highlighting the success of the UK’s growing gin industry.

The Brown-Forman Corporation has announced that it has purchased all shares of Slane Castle Irish Whiskey Limited and is to build a new $50 million distillery there.

Alexandre Ricard set his stall out yesterday (June 2) as Pernod Ricard celebrated 40 years of the two anise brands merging.

U’Luvka, the premium Polish vodka brand, has appointed Robert Zajaczkowski as its global brand manager.

Asia, and specifically China, is heading back to growth following the Chinese government's clamp down nearly two years ago on extravagant entertaining, excessive drinking and gifting.

The SPI Group has announced the appointment of Patrick Piana as Stoli Group USA's new CEO, effective August 2015.

Irish minister for agriculture, food and marine Simon Coveney will launch the Irish Whiskey Association’s ‘Vision for Irish Whiskey’ at an event this evening (May 12) in the Old Jameson Distillery, in Dublin.

Beam Suntory has announced that it will simplify its regional structure by merging its four operating regions into three.

The Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) has been awarded The Queen’s Award for Enterprise 2015 in international trade.

Belvédère SA, the wine and spirits company in Europe and the US, has announced has announced the composition of its executive committee, headed by CEO Jean-Noël Reynaud.

Global Spirits, a privately held international manufacturer and marketer of wines and spirits, intends to expand its global presence by establishing an Americas Business Unit which will be based out of the company’s New York office.

Drinks International’s regular spirits writer Dominic Roskrow has been short-listed for a coveted Fortnum & Mason Food and Drinks Award for work carried out for Drinks International.

Economist Sanna Suvanto-Harsaae becomes the new chairman of Altia’s board. Other new members of the board are: Kim Henriksson and Kasper Madsen who bring expertise on the Nordic market.

Cocktail bar, Mr Fogg’s in London’s Mayfair said to be the home of the eccentric British adventurer, Phileas J. Fogg is the site of Hendrick’s gin brand’s Botanical Garden.

Akiko Maeda has been appointed Bacardi's VP of fashion, responsible for developing partnerships that further incorporate the group's portfolio of spirits brands into the fashion world.

Scotch whisky exports declined 7% to £3.95 billion in 2014, according to figures from the UK government’s HM Revenue and Customs published today (1 April).

Old Pulteney has announced a partnership to raise funds for the maritime charity, The Mission to Seafarers.

The WSTA says new research shows that price increases in the off trade have slowed since the Government scrapped the alcohol duty escalator, cut beer duty and froze duty on spirits in 2014.

Brown-Forman has announced that Marshall Farrer, described as a “veteran employee” with various domestic, international, and global roles in sales and marketing, is its global travel retail team’s new managing director.

The Suffolk brewer and distiller and retailer has reported sales of £66 million and a £3.8m operating profit, in its report and accounts for the 12 months to December 31, 2014.

Edrington, owners of brands such as The Macallan, Famous Grouse and Snow Leopard, has announced the launch of Edrington European Travel Retail.

Just how innovative is the whisk(e)y industry? is the subject of this year’s Distillers;’ City Debate on May 14.

Campari full year results

10 March, 2015

Gruppo Campari has published its full year results for 2014 which it says is in line with its expectations.

Diageo has pledged to make capital investment to expand local production facilities across distilling, bottling and water treatment as well as increasing its agave farming capacity in Mexico, following the completion of its acquisition of Tequila Don Julio last week.

Blavod gets TTB approval

26 February, 2015

Distil has announced that its Blavod Black vodka has been approved for sale in the US by the US Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB).

The scotch whisky industry, adds almost £5 billion in value every year to the UK economy, according to a report commissioned by the Scotch Whisky Association.

Diageo has appointed a digital and e-commerce manager for Europe – a new role created to unify the company’s digital practices and develop a comprehensive digital presence.

Wild Turkey master distiller Jimmy Russell has announced that he has promoted his son, Eddie, to share his responsibilities.

Bacardi has announced an internal appointment of a new regional president for Europe.

Pennell goes to Edrington

23 January, 2015

Maxxium UK’s managing director Huw Pennell is leaving to take up a new job at Edrington, one of Maxxium’s shareholders.

The move to new halls will allow fresh ideas and innovation in the wine sector, according to the Prowein organisers.

The 2015 Vinexpo is a turning point. It is the second generation, so says the new CEO, Guillaume Deglise.

Bacardí has unveiled a new range of proprietary bottlings from its John Dewar & Sons’ Aultmore distillery. 

Johnnie Walker is today (Dec 4) staging a driving spectacular in Edinburgh with some Formula 1 stars to encourage people to never drink and drive.

Edrington has marked the official start of works on its £100 million distillery and visitor centre for its The Macallan single malt scotch whisky brand.

The Scotch Whisky Association has appointed Pierre Pringuet, CEO of Pernod Ricard, as its new chairman.

Gin distiller Hayman has launched a small batch gin called Family Reserve, which is rested for three weeks in aged scotch whisky barrels.

Rossi D’Asiago has announced that its flagship sambuca Antica, the second best selling brand in the category worldwide, will be distributed in Russia by the Synergy Group.

The first Armagnac Academy in China took place on Thursday October 30 in Beijing at the Crown Plaza hotel in the Wangfujing district.

Asia remains the key region for the long-term development of the global alcohol market, according to the IWSR’s latest report.

Spirit France, leading producer of Calvados with the brands Père Magloire, Boulard and Lecompte, has announced the acquisition of a majority stake in Armagnac brand: Janneau.

New limited edition Martell

28 October, 2014

Martell, which claims to be the oldest of the great cognac houses, is celebrating its 300th anniversary with the release of a new limited edition expression, Martell Premier Voyage.

The Wine and Spirit Trade Association’s Spirits Committee has elected Finn O’Driscoll, managing director of SHS Drinks, as its new chairman. He replaces Chris Searle.

Irish Distillers is opening the doors to its Irish Whiskey Academy to the general public with in-depth courses available to spirits enthusiasts from December this year.

The Explorers Club has announced that it has come to a settlement with Diageo over the use of its name in regard to the global number one scotch whisky brand, Johnnie Walker.

Exports of scotch in the first half of the year were £1.77 billion, down 11% from £1.99bn in the same period of 2013, according to the Scotch Whisky Association.

William Grant & Sons' new €37 million distillery in the small Irish town of Tullamore, officially opened on September 17.

Pernod Ricard UK managing director, Denis O’Flynn has been elected as the next chairman of the Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA), succeeding Nick Hyde in January 2015.

Pernod Ricard CEO Pierre Pringuet remains optimistic about China despite 23% decline in sales in its full year results.

Diageo Global Travel has announced the opening of two Johnnie Walker House retail showcase stores in travel retail – one in Mumbai, India and another in Taipei, Taiwan.

Berry Bros. & Rudd Spirits is to distribute Karlsson’s Gold vodka worldwide, except in the US.

UK distribution of Averna, the second best-selling bitter in Italy, has gone to J. Wray and Nephew UK.

The Asia Pacific Travel Retail Association has embarked on a new Responsible Retail Training Programme (RRTP) for DFS staff in stores at Singapore Changi airport.

Edrington and the Kyndal Group have announced a 50:50 joint venture to bottle, distribute and market Cutty Sark scotch whisky in India.

Stock Spirits Group PLC, the Central and Eastern European branded spirits producer, has announced its six monthly results for the period ended June 30, 2014.

Now Bacardi appoints CFO

27 August, 2014

Bacardi Limited has announced the immediate appointment of Kevin F. McNamara as Bacardi Limited senior vice president and chief financial officer (CFO), responsible for global financial operations.

Beam Suntory has announced the appointment of Mauricio Restrepo as the company’s chief financial officer.

William Grant & Sons has reported the installation of the custom-made spirit safe at what will become the new distillery for Tullamore Dew, its Irish whiskey brand.

The Tax Free World Association has announced Air France-KLM CEO Alexandre de Juniac will speak at the opening conference of its Cannes exhibition in October.

The George pub in Frant, East Sussex in southern England is to host the Sloe Gin World Championships on Wednesday December 10 from 1.00pm.

William Grant & Sons has appointed Kevin Abrook, currently global marketing manager innovation for whisky as its first ever global whisky specialist, innovation.

Diageo Global Travel and Middle East (GTME) managing director Doug Bagley, has announced two senior appointments to his Singapore-based team.

Charles Joly of The Aviary in Chicago is Diageo’s World Class Bartender of the Year.

The Wine & Spirits Education Trust (WSET) has announced that the first half of 2014 saw the WSET Level 3 award in wines and spirits being run for the first time in Chinese.

The West Indies Rum and Spirits Producers’ Association (WIRSPA) has approved the incorporation of Hampden Estate Gold, Monymusk Plantation Special Reserve and Westerhall Vintage into its Authentic Caribbean Rum (ACR) marquee.

Rémy Cointreau has announced the promotion of former LVMH boss Panos Sarantopoulos as CEO of its liqueurs and spirits division.

Ambitious UK bartenders are being invited to participate in a competition to create a fresh take on Jerry Thomas’ classic ‘Gin Cocktail’.

Gonzalez Byass, the major sherry producer, has unveiled a new whisky which, it claims, is a first and could represent the beginning of a new spirits category.

Bacardi Limited has announced the internal appointments of two new regional presidents.

William Grant & Sons has unveiled a new Glenfiddich expression.

Diageo has announced the appointment of Vickie Sheriff as global communications director. Sheriff will report to Charlotte Lambkin, global corporate relations director, and be responsible for external communications and employee engagement. She starts on September 1.

Beam Suntory has announced that it will begin distribution of the Suntory Japanese and scotch whiskies and Midori liqueur in the US and Germany beginning July 1.

Baptiste Loiseau, Rémy Martin’s new cellarmaster, was in London yesterday (June 11) as part of the farewell celebrations for the retiring Pierrette Trichet.

Baptiste Loiseau, Rémy Martin’s new cellarmaster, was in London yesterday (June 11) as part of the farewell celebrations for the retiring Pierrette Trichet.

Nicci Stringfellow has been appointed brand ambassador for Brown-Forman's Casa Herradura tequila in the UK.

UK drinks industry figures gathered for the Benevolent Roof Gardens Party last week to celebrate the end of the London Wine Fair 2014. They raised more than £10,000 for their trade charity.

Brintex, organisers of the London Wine Fair, has hailed the reinvented, relocated trade show a success.

Wray & Nephew is looking for a London-based UK brand ambassador for its Jamaican rum brand, Appleton Estate.

Hite-Jinro’s soju brand, Jinro, remains the world’s best-selling spirit, according to this year's Drinks International’s million-case brands survey.

The gin category is expanding, and fast, the first grand rectifier of the Gin Guild Christopher Hayman announced at the first Gin Guild Ginposium last Tuesday (June 3).

Gruppo Campari has announced the completion of its acquisition of Canadian distiller, Forty Creek.

on 30 May, 2014

Another one of those low key informal briefings this time revolving around the new Johnnie Walker expression: John Walker Private Collection 2014. As has become customary, held in London’s Soho, officiated over by Diageo’s head of whisky outreach, Nick Morgan and in the hot seat a jet and train-lagged master distiller, Jim Beveridge.

on 30 May, 2014

Wallaces–TCB (Tennant Caledonian Breweries), formed after the completion of the acquisition of Wallaces Express, Scotland’s largest wines and spirits wholesaler, by C&C Group, has announced the following senior management appointments, reporting to chief executive, Brian Calder.

Diageo has announced special cask strength bottlings of Lagavulin and Caol Ila for this year’s Islay Festival of Malt & Music.

Drambuie up for sale

22 May, 2014

Drambuie the scotch whisky liqueur is up for sale, according to the Financial Times newspaper.

Bacardi has launched a super premium rum, Gran Reserva Maestro de Ron, exclusively for global travel retail.

The Gin Guild, a trade body set up in 2012 to encourage excellence in gin distillation and promote the category worldwide, has 25 new members.

Entries are now welcome for the first-ever Investec Food & Drink Entrepreneur of the Year 2014.

Vestal, the vodka made from small relatively unprocessed potatoes from single regions and bottled by vintage, is to be distributed in the UK by Maverick Drinks.

Vinexpo 2015

12 May, 2014

The next Vinexpo exhibition will be held in Bordeaux, France from Sunday June 14 to Thursday the 18th 2015.

Altia, the leading Nordic and Baltic wine and spirits company has come up with Danish cocktail to celebrate the Eurovision Song Contest which takes place in Copenhagen tomorrow (May 10).

Tom Walker of the American Bar at The Savoy hotel in London, has won the Bacardi Legacy Global Cocktail Competition 2014.

Brown-Forman has made experienced bartender Cam Dawson its new American whiskey ambassador, working solely on Jack Daniel’s.

Quintessential Brands, owners of the London Dry gin brand Bloom, has launched of its first ‘summer limited edition gin liquor’, Bloom Strawberry Cup.

Diageo Global Travel and Middle East (GTME) has announced the launch of the John Walker & Sons Private Collection by Walker's master blender Jim Beveridge.

Edrington, , has announced the establishment of Edrington Americas, a wholly-owned sales, marketing and distribution company for the US.

Pernod Ricard Travel Retail Europe has unveiled the latest of its limited edition Single Cask Editions – The Glenlivet Kymah.

Edrington has announced the establishment of Edrington Americas, a wholly-owned sales, marketing and distribution company for the US.

Chivas Brothers, the Scotch whisky and premium gin division of Pernod Ricard, has announced it is expanding The Glenlivet Nàdurra brand.

Pernod Ricard’s net sales for the first nine months of the 2013/14 financial year totalled €6,186 million – down 7% on the same period last year. The company says the results are in line with the first half-year and sales were stable excluding foreign exchange and group structure effects.

Jameson is in a very good period right now. The momentum is there and there is room to go up, according to Jameson International brand director, Dan Lundberg.

The Diego Zamora group has appointed Matthew Turner as its global brand director for Licor 43.

Diageo's new chief executive Ivan Menezes, has announced a series of changes to his executive management committee

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, the UK’s chief finance minister, has frozen the controversial so-called alcohol duty accelerator on spirits and standard cider.

New figures show pubs in Britain are becoming increasingly reliant on wine and spirit sales, according to the Wine and Spirit Trade Association.

Pernod Ricard Travel Retail Europe has unveiled its largest travel retail activation to date in Heathrow Terminal 5, featuring its artisanal gin brand Plymouth.

William Grant & Sons has announced that four hand crafted copper stills have been delivered to its Tullamore Dew site in County Offaly, in the Irish midlands approximately 100km west of Dublin.

Bushmills Live, the music festival which is held at the Northern Ireland distillery on June 11 and 12, has secured The 1975 band as headliners.

Gruppo Campari has bought the Canadian whisky producer Forty Creek Distillery (FCD), an independently owned Canadian spirits company.

Gruppo Campari has posted up sales of €1,524 million, +13.7%, (organic growth +1.7%) while the group net profit was down -4.4% to €149.8m for the for the full year ending December 31, 2013.

The UK market for Scotch whisky declined by 3% last year.

Altia, the Nordic and Baltic wine and spirits company, has announced the appointment of 44-year-old Pekka Tennilä, who has been poached from Carlsberg.

William Grant & Sons has announced at international memorial services in New York and Scotland and a special expression, for Charles Grant Gordon, the man who gave the world Glenfiddich Scotch whisky.

Diageo has announced that it plans to invest an initial US$2 million to develop the Stitzel-Weller Visitor Center at the Louisville distillery.

on 18 February, 2014

The Pernod Ricard team were in London today (February 18) to flesh on the bones for their half year interim results which were announced last week.

Diageo Reserve has announced that its ‘World Class’ mixology competition will be held in the UK from 28 July to 1 August.

Diageo, the world’s largest premium spirits company and the largest producer of Scotch whisky, has launched an initiative to locate lost and forgotten barrels of whisk(e)y from around the world.

The Teeling Whiskey Company (TWC) has announced its plans for a new whiskey distillery to be located in Dublin’s Newmarket Square in The Liberties, Dublin 8.

The Wine & Spirit Education Trust's international Wine Educator of the Year is the Asia Wine Service & Education Centre, Hong Kong (AWSEC).

William Grant & Sons has launched a scholarship to honour Ian Murray, its former prestige retail manager, who died last year after a short illness.

Johnnie Walker Blue Label, Diageo’s best selling blended Scotch whisky brand and Alfred Dunhill have joined forces to create the ‘Johnnie Walker Blue Label and Alfred Dunhill Travel Retail exclusive gift pack’.

Diageo has announced plans for a £30 million expansion of its Clynelish distillery in Sutherland.

Pernod Ricard has announced the appointment of Doron Friedman as director global travel retail at The Absolut Company (TAC).

Martin Miller dies aged 67

02 January, 2014

Martin Miller, founder of Martin Miller’s gin, passed away on Christmas Eve after a battle with cancer.

It has just been announced that Charles Gordon, life president of William Grant & Sons, died in New York at the weekend. He was 86.

Bell joins Diageo

18 December, 2013

Diageo has announced that Georgie Bell, currently global ambassador for the Scotch Malt Whisky Society, will join Diageo next month (January) as a global brand ambassador, focusing on the promotion of its new range of Mortlach single malt scotch which will be launched next year (2014).

First Drinks Brands and Rémy Cointreau have confirmed that their distribution agreement in the UK will end on March 31.

Diageo bites the Bulleit

10 December, 2013

Diageo has announced the launch of Bulleit Bourbon at and the introduction of its new Bulleit Rye whiskey into the UK.

Diageo bites the Bulleit

10 December, 2013

Diageo has announced the launch of Bulleit Bourbon and the introduction of its new Bulleit Rye whiskey into the UK.

on 10 December, 2013

A scotch whisky distiller, when asked recently if he made any blends, was gloriously sniffy and dismissive of blended whisky. It would have been interesting to see and hear what he would have made of the Johnnie Walker Directors Blends, which I got to taste last Thursday (November 28) in London.

Adnams, best known as an English regional brewer, is about to launch its first ever whiskies.

Ballantine's does a Brazilian

03 December, 2013

Ballantine’s Brasil is the name of a new lime-infused spirit drink, from the Chivas Brothers scotch and premium gin divisions of Pernod Ricard.

on 28 November, 2013

I have just returned from the celebrations to mark the 20th anniversary of Havana Club International. Standing in a huge hall with more than 1,000 people – mostly employees but also people associated with the company and the eponymous Cuban rum brand – it became obvious what a force for good an alcoholic drinks brand can be.

La Martinquaise, the French spirits group, has announced that WS Karoulias, one of the leading spirits distribution companies in Greece, will be the exclusive distributor of its Label 5 scotch whisky in Greece.

Altia replaces CEO

25 November, 2013

Altia Plc has released CEO Antti Pankakoski. He has been CEO since 2007. He left last Wednesday, November 21.

Anders Olsson has decided to resign as director of the Absolut Company’s Global Travel Retail (GTR) division.

The directors of Davide Campari-Milano SpA has announced its consolidated results for the nine months ending 30 September 2013.

The Macallan and French crystal maker, Lalique, unveiled their latest special decanter in the Six Pillars Collection at the TFWA exhibition in Cannes today (October 22).

Travel Retail up 9.4%

22 October, 2013

Global travel retail sales are up 9.4% to US55.8 billion, according to the president of the Tax Free World Association president, Erik Juul-Mortensen.

Diageo has announced a new marketing campaign for its scotch whisky blend, Johnnie Walker, that will amount to a £7.2 million spend.

Western spirits companies that focus on growing margins to create value have been more successful than those that reduced prices in order to grow volumes, according to a report from Rabobank.

Mike Flannery, barman at New York’s Apartment 13 restaurant has won the 2013 Peter F Heering Sling Awards at the BCB Bar Convent show in Berlin.

Beam’s newest Jim Beam is Red Stag by Jim Beam Hardcore Cider.

Bartender Arnd H Heissen and Cologne bar, Spirits, took the top prizes at The Mixology Bar Awards 2014 last night.

SPI sells Kremlyovskaya

07 October, 2013

The SPI Group has announced that it has sold Kremlyovskaya vodka to the Classic International Group.

Aidan Bowie from the Blythswood Square Hotel in Glasgow is the European winner of the Auchentoshan Switch – the transatlantic mixology competition.

Berry Bros & Rudd Spirits has launched a single estate XO aged rum from Mauritius, called Penny Blue.

The Here and Now is the name of Maxxium UK’s new advertising and marketing campaign for Courvoisier Cognac.

More new Irish whiskeys

01 October, 2013

Irish Distillers has launched more Irish whiskeys, this time under the Paddy brand.

Black Bottle is relaunched

01 October, 2013

Burn Stewart Distillers has relaunched the premium blended scotch whisky, Black Bottle.

Use pubs or lose them

01 October, 2013

CAMRA (the Campaign for Real Ale), is calling on British people to use pubs otherwise they will close. It claims 26 pubs close every week in Britain.

Cool drinks brands

30 September, 2013

There are no alcoholic drinks brands in CoolBrands top 20 ‘A-Listers’ of 2013.

The Tate launches gin and beer

26 September, 2013

Tate Britain and Tate Modern, London’s famous art galleries, have introduced its own gin and limited edition beers.

Stock Spirits Group has announced its intention to offer shares to institutional investors and float on the London Stock Exchange. It is expected the offer will complete next month. It hopes to raise £52 million.

Glenfiddich’s Malt Mastermind competition is moving to Scotland – to Dufftown the home of the world’s number one single malt scotch whisky

Nemiroff exports are blocked

19 September, 2013

Ukrainian vodka producer Nemiroff is in the middle of a boardroom struggle which has resulted in some exports, including to Russia, being stopped.

Armagnac Academies launched

17 September, 2013

The BNIA (Bureau National Interprofessionnel de l’Armagnac) has launched a programme to educate drinks professionals about France’s oldest spirit.

Scotch by rail

13 September, 2013

A trial is being launched to deliver Scotch whisky by train from Speyside to central Scotland in a bid to cut road journeys and emissions.

Bisquit Cognac is opening the doors of its château for the first time to the public to celebrate France’s national heritage weekend (Journées Européennes du Patrimoine).

A new packaging facility which cost US$43 million has been opened at the Wild Turkey distillery in Kentucky.

ProWein fully booked

09 September, 2013

The organiser of ProWein has announced that ProWein 2014 is already fully booked, six months before the show.

The Irish prime minister or Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, yesterday (September 4) officially opened Irish Distillers’ newly expanded Midleton distillery in Cork.

Diageo and the Irish Whiskey Company (IWC) have announced that they have entered into an agreement in principal concerning the future ownership of the Great Northern Brewery site, Dundalk. 

Moscow Bar Show

21 August, 2013

The third Moscow Bar Show returns on October 1 – 3at the IEC Crocus Expo.

National Calvados Week

20 August, 2013

National Calvados Week takes place in the UK between October 14 and 20.

The SPI Group has appointed Chase International Inc. as its new exclusive distributor of Stolichnaya vodka and elit by Stolichnaya, in the US duty free market.

Cinnamon Smirnoff Gold

19 August, 2013

Diageo has introduced Smirnoff Gold – a blend of Smirnoff No.21 premium vodka with natural cinnamon flavouring, garnished with edible 23 carat gold leaf.

United Spirits board of directors has appointed former Diageo CEO, Paul Walsh, as an additional director of the company with immediate effect.

Irish Distillers has launched the latest release of its flagship blended whiskey, Midleton Very Rare.

Unhappy Hour by Jamie Sims was the winner of Beefeater #MyLondon Film Fest.

Diageo has unveiled what it claims is the world’s first accelerator programme, set up to encourage, nurture and mentor new and growing spirits brands.

Absolut has announced new designs for its range of flavoured vodkas.

Diageo has announced what it claims to be one of its most innovative products for a decade - Baileys Chocolat Luxe.

Gruppo Campari has posted its half term results - sales of €698.6 million. 13% up but group net profit is down 26.1% to €57.6m.

The Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) has announced that latest figures show that worldwide student numbers for the academic year 2012/13, just finished, stand at an all-time high of 48,434, up 12% on the previous year.

Christmas is £4 billion worth of business for beer, wines and spirits, according to Pernod Ricard UK.

on 31 July, 2013

Listening to BBC Radio 4 this morning (July 31), I heard the voice of the new chief executive of Diageo. Ivan Menezes coped well with the busy, bustling questions from the Beeb’s city correspondent in the minute or so allotted to the interview.

The Scotch Whisky Association has responded to reports today (July 25) that there is major opposition from several European countries to Scotland’s yet to be enacted law a minimum price for a unit of alcohol.

Quintessential Brands, the independent European spirits group has announced the formation of new company, Essential Drinks.

Diageo has received approval from the Chinese authorities to buy the remaining 47% stake in Sichuan Chengdu Shuijingfang Group Company Ltd. (SJF Holdco).

Diageo has announced that its corporate relations director is to leave the company.

Diageo, the world’s largest premium drinks company has launched a pan-European online campaign ‘Think How You Drink’ to remind young people that drinking to excess can lead to shame and embarrassment.

SPI Group, owner of Stolichnaya russian vodka, has appointed Romain Ambrunn as Asia Pacific regional director.

London Wine Fair organisers Brintex has reported a “decidedly positive response” from existing exhibitors signing up for 2014.

Russian Standard vodka, Russia’s number one global vodka, has a new distribution partnership with Borco-Marken-Import (Borco) to manage the brand’s distribution and marketing in Germany and Austria.

Laurent Lacassagne has this week (W/C July 8) become chairman and CEO of Chivas Brothers, the Scotch whisky and premium gin business of Pernod Ricard.

A bartender from Spain has won Diageo's global bartender competition World Class.

Diageo has announced that it has completed the acquisition of a further 14.98% stake in United Spirits Limited (USL), the leading spirits company in India.

The rare and special bottle of The Macallan Select Reserve, donated by Maxxium UK, sold for £4,400 at the Masterpiece Midsummer Party Auction and will benefit Marie Curie Cancer Care; a charity that cares for terminally ill patients and their families. 

The rare and special bottle of The Macallan Select Reserve, donated by Maxxium UK, sold for £4,400 at the Masterpiece Midsummer Party Auction and will benefit Marie Curie Cancer Care; a charity that cares for terminally ill patients and their families. 

Marblehead, the privately-owned UK-based, brand development and distribution company, has announced a new partnership with Quintessential Brands, the independent spirits company.

Brown-Forman Corporation has announced that it intends to expand the Woodford Reserve distillery to meet expected growing global demand.

The US Drinks Conference will be held at the Jacob Javits Center in New York on Tuesday, September 10.

The Diego Zamora group has appointed Thomas Clamens as its international managing director.

on 20 June, 2013

You don’t often go to a whisky tasting and get given raspberry sorbet, half way through.  Sniffing strawberry and getting a vanilla stick stuck up your nose, isn’t common either.

Total alcohol sales continue to fall according to the latest Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) market report.

MBG International Premium Brands GmbH has bought the liqueur maker E. Eduard Meyer GmbH from the Schwarze Schlichte group.

Tequila and Mescal have a poor image and there is a lack of understanding, according to a Mexican government body.

Chivas Brothers' Speyside distillery, Glen Keith, has re-opened, having been closed, or silent, since 1999.

J & G Grant, owners of the Glenfarclas distillery, has appointed George Grant to its board of directors.

WIRSPA relaunches

14 June, 2013

The West Indies Rum and Spirits Producers’ Association has relaunched its ‘Authentic Caribbean Rum' campaign.

Altia, the Nordic-based alcoholic drinks group has bought the Larsen Cognac brand and the Danish aquavit brand Brøndums.

Diageo new appointments

06 June, 2013

Diageo has announced that Andy Fennell, chief marketing officer, will become president COO, Africa, reporting to Nick Blazquez, president Africa, Eastern Europe and Turkey.

Wemyss, owner of independent bottler Wemyss Malts and blended malt whiskies such as The Spice King, The Peat Chimney and The Hive, has announced that final planning permission has now been granted for its new single malt whisky distillery and visitor centre.

The announcement yesterday of the appointment of Dave Wilson’s as Patrón Spirits’ new president of international operations and global COO, follows the surprise decision by John McDonnell to step down.

Armagnac house Janneau has decided to double its capacity to distil in-house.

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) exhibition, Scotch Whisky: From Grain to Glass, has opened in the Glasgow.

Patrón Spirits has announced that Dave Wilson is its president of its new international operations and global COO, effective June 10.

on 29 May, 2013

Standing listening last night to The Macallan’s brand ambassador, Joy Elliot, who was conducting a tasting of the new 1824 Series at the Whisky Shop in London’s Piccadilly, I could not resist a feeling of déjà vu.

William Grant & Sons has announced that Gordon Dron, its managing director for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) has decided to leave the company.

Rusty Cerven, of the UK’s Connaught Bar, won the seventh annual Bols Around the World competition, beating 11 other finalists in a hard-fought competition at Amsterdam’s Escape nightclub.

New Indian whiskies

15 May, 2013

Two single malt Indian whiskies were unveiled in London last night (May 14).

Davide Campari-Milano SpA has posted poor results in first quarter ending March 31, 2013 which it states is mainly due to the ‘one-off’ destocking in Italy.

on 10 May, 2013

I became an honorary Gin Rectifier last night (May 9). I took an oath and now I am duty bound to promote the best interests of gin.

Bacardi Global Travel Retail (BGTR) has launched a Highland single malt Scotch whisky collection exclusive to travel retailers, World Duty Free.

The global Gin sector is low price, low growth and extremely uninteresting, according to a top City of London analyst.

Diageo, has reported 5% organic and 6% reported net sales growth for the nine months to 31 March 31. Volume was up 1%.

European spirits exports were worth €10.2 billion in 2012 - 20% up from €8.5 billion in the previous year.

Pernod Ricard Chivas Brothers has released a new limited edition expression of Beefeater, the world’s best-selling premium gin.

Diageo has unveiled a Smirnoff variant, Espresso Smirnoff.

Diageo has announced that its global supply and procurement operation will be refocused to improve supplying its 21 key markets.

Pernod Ricard has launched Absolut Denim, the latest version of the Swedish vodka brand.

The board of Davide Campari-Milano SpA, has reported group net profit of €156.7 million in its consolidated financial results for the year ended December 31, 2012. Sales were up 5.2% to €1,340.8m

Diageo has released the second blend in the Johnnie Walker Explorers' Club range, which is a duty free exclusive.

The Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) has warned that changes to customs classifications at EU level could lead to an increase in excise duty and VAT for some made-wine* products in the UK.

Bowmore the single malt Scotch whisky from Islay, has launched The Bowmore Water Program.

Glenmorangie has announced the launch of a whisky programme, which will involve its followers in the selection of a new limited edition whisky.

The House of Camus, which claims to be the last major, independent and family-owned Cognac house, celebrates its 150th anniversary this year.

Two new WSET trustees

27 February, 2013

The Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) has announced two new trustees - Mentzendorff managing director Andrew Hawes and Jonathan Driver who, after leaving Diageo in 2006, has become a global consultant.

Highland Park last night (February 22) unveiled The Warrior Series, which will comprise a range of six single malt whiskies.

Davide Campari-Milano SpA has announced that it is taking over the distribution and marketing of its recently acquired Appleton rum brands from Kobrand from March 1.

William Grant’s Balvenie Tun 1401 Batch 5 has been voted the ‘Speyside Single Malt of the Year’.

Whyte & Mackay’s Jura distillery has added a new, limited-edition vintage expression – the 1977.

The Macallan and the French crystal brand, Lalique have launched a a new presentation for The Macallan which is exclusive to a select number of duty free and travel retail outlets in Asia.

The Distilled Spirits Council (Discus), which represents the spirits industry in the US, revealed its 2012 findings in New York this week.

Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard has announced the retirement of Jameson Irish Whiskey master distiller Barry Crockett.

Beam’s ultra-premium positioned limited edition tequila, Casa Sauza XA, has a new look.

The Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) meets with Economic Secretary to the Treasury today (February 5), ahead of the Budget in March.

SPI has announced that its Stolichnaya flavoured variants, Stoli Hot and Stoli Sticki have been listed by Dufry Do Brazil, the largest travel retail distributor in Latin America.

A bottle of Hine Grande Champagne Cognac from 1952, to commemorate the accession to the throne of Queen Elizabeth II, is among several lots of Cognac to feature in auctioneers Bonhams’ sale on February 14 in London.

Diageo to expand its archive

01 February, 2013

Diageo has announced plans to invest £1.5 million in expanding the its global brand archive.

Diageo, the world’s largest premium alcoholic drinks company, has announced its interim results for the six months ended December 31, 2012

Funkin has appointed Simon Little, formerly of Diageo, Percy Fox, SABMiller, Greene King and Gaymers, as its new sales director.

SPI Group, owner of the Stolichnaya Russian vodka brand, has made John Esposito president of its US operations.

Diageo fires new Bulleit

24 January, 2013

Diageo has launched a 10 year old expression of Bulleit Bourbon in the US.

Pre-mixed drinks

21 December, 2012

Consumers are starting to really embrace the convenience of a pre-mixed drink in a portable format. Hamish Smith reports

The Craft Distillers Alliance has criticised a brewery in East Anglia for breaking the rules governing the production of whisky after it launched a new spirits product made with one of its beers.

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) has announced two trade agreements with Colombia and Peru and its Association Agreement with Central America.

J&G Grant has announced the appointment of Callum Fraser as the new production manager at the Glenfarclas Distillery.

Jack Daniel’s has launched its first installation of Jack Daniel’s Sinatra Select’s 'The Sinatra Experience' in Las Vegas airport.

Diageo the world’s largest premium drinks company in the world, is to sponsor public transport in London and Edinburgh on New Year’s Eve.

A 233-year-old Courvoisier cognac, discovered in a Dutch Collection is on sale for £95,000 at Harrods in London

Adnams, best known as a regional English brewer, has previewed two English whiskies which will be launched next year in time for Christmas.

One direction for LIWF

03 December, 2012

Brintex, the organiser of the London International Wine Fair, has announced new initiatives to reinvigorate the 2013 show.

First Drinks, William Grant & Sons UK distributor, has announced a major investment to strengthen its presence in the UK on-trade.

First Drinks has announced the finalists of the Glenfiddich Malt Mastermind cocktail competition.

Major scotch exhibition

16 November, 2012

A major exhibition about scotch whisky, Scotland’s national drink, will open on 29 November at the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh.

Guala Closures, a leading maker of aluminium closures for spirits and wines, has bought the Metal Closures division of South African company, MCG Industries.

Global spirits groups and aspiring brands were present at the second annual Moscow Bar Show (MBS) this week to capitalize on Russian bartenders and distributors’ growing interest in international spirits. 

The Tax Free World Association (TFWA) and the Middle East Duty Free Association (MEDFA) have released the programme for the 2012 MEDFA Conference.

Bacardi Limited, the largest privately-held spirits company in the world, has announced the appointment of Siddik Tetík as regional president of Asia Pacific.

Bacardi has announced the appointment of Ron Anderson as senior vice president and chief commercial officer.

Absinthe

09 July, 2012

With all the bans on absinthe now lifted, the traditional French and Swiss producers are now free to re-invent the category for the 21st century. Hamish Smith investigates

Diageo, has launched Chinese white spirit brand, Shui Jing Fang, onto the UK domestic market.

Legislation granting permanent normal trade relations status (PNTR) to Russia has been introduced to the US Senate. The Distilled Spirits Council urged speedy passage in order for US distillers to gain many market access benefits of Russia’s accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

The price of wine and spirits has risen by more than twice the level of inflation, according to the latest WSTA Market Report.

Diageo, the world's leading premium drinks business, has announced that it has reached agreement with Ypióca Agroindustrial Limitada to buy cachaça brand, Ypióca, and certain production assets.

China is the key for any global company and it is as important now as the US was in the past, according to speakers at the inaugural Worshipful Company of Distillers' city debate.

Patrón Spirits has partnered with the Turkish importer BT to distribute the company's tequilas and XO Cafe coffee liqueur.

Diageo has announced the completion of the mandatory tender offer for the outstanding shares in Chinese white spirits company, Sichuan Shuijingfang

US recognises cachaça

11 April, 2012

The US is to officially recognise cachaça as a spirit from Brazil. The sugar cane spirit is currently labelled Brazilian rum in the US.

Campari America has joined the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS).

The Wine and Spirit Trade Association, the lead body for the UK wine and spirits sectors, has announced the appointment of Miles Beale as its new chief executive.

Altia, the wine and spirits group that focuses on the Nordic countries, has announced a 7.6% net sales increase to €524.8 million for the year January to December 2011.

Patrón Spirits International will introduce its XO Café variant to China following an agreement with the Shanghai-based Telford Wine & Spirits.

The European Forum for Responsible Drinking (EFRD) has launched a web-campaign to promote responsible marketing practices for alcoholic beverages. The objective is to explain in plain language how EU-wide codes of advertising should be applied.

UK spirits and liqueur agency, Mangrove, will no longer distribute Chase Distillery products. 

Pernod Ricard UK has announced the following senior appointments within its executive committee and senior management group with immediate effect.

The European Union and the US Distilled Spirits Council (DISCUS) have welcomed a decision that finds the Philippines to be in breach of trade rules when it comes to tax on imported spirits.

La Martiniquaise, the French spirits group, has announced that, Russian Alcohol Group  the Russian subsidiary of CEDC, will be the exclusive distributor of Label 5 scotch whisky in Russia from January. Label 5 claims to be the fast-growing tenth largest worldwide scotch brand.

on 11 November, 2011

Drinks International is delighted to announce that Patience Gould, its former editor and a well known figure in the drinks industry, is returning to write a regular column.

Drinks International is delighted to announce that Patience Gould, its former editor and a well known figure in the drinks industry, is returning to write a regular column.

Central European spirits and liqueurs company Stock Spirits Group is gearing up to acquire new business.

Patrón Spirits International has teamed up with Mumbai-based agent Aspri Spirits to distribute its portfolio of tequila, vodka and rum in India.

ISC trophies announced

10 October, 2011

The winners of the International Spirits Challenge trophies have been announced.

UK: Hi-Spirits is set to launch the Buffalo Trace Distillery 2011 Antique Collection this month.

A five-litre demijohn of 1985 Cognac Frapin has sold for €15,000 at a charity auction.

Nemiroff Company has made its first step into eco-friendly spirits with the launch of Nemiroff Distinct, a vodka flavoured with aloe. 

Gemini Spirits & Wine, which claims to be the fastest growing spirits and specialty brand development company in the US, is to become the exclusive US importer of the Peter Heering and Xanté brands.

Beam Global Spirits & Wine has appointed Christopher G. Bauder to the role of bourbon category business team (CBT) general manager.

Beam unveils new logo

16 August, 2011

Beam Global Spirits & Wine has announced new corporate branding in anticipation of becoming an independent publicly traded spirits company, to be renamed Beam, early in the fourth quarter.

The World Trade Organisation (WTO) has ruled that discriminatory excise tax on spirits in the Philippines is a violation of WTO rules.

UK spirits and liqueur agency, Mangrove, has announced plans for expansion into the Middle East and south Asia.

Premiumisation is driving UK spirits volume and value growth in the on and off-trade, according to findings by First Drinks.

Pernod Ricard has announced the disposal, by its affiliate Pernod Ricard Europe, of its shares in Georgian Wine and Spirits LLC to JSC Marussia (Georgia).

The International Wine and Spirits Institute (IWSI), based in Bordeaux, is to open an eight-week spirits training programme in London next year.

Patrón Spirits has appointed Phil Gervasi, a former VP at Diageo, as executive vice president of sales for North America.

Beam Global Spirits & Wine has launched gin brand, Larios 12, to Spanish travel retail.

Stock Spirits Group has appointed Waldemar Maj and Dominique Bach as non-executive directors.

Stock Spirits recorded double-digit organic revenue growth and profit growth in 2010.

Diageo’s Johnnie Walker is the number one spirits brand by value according to Impact Databank’s Top 100 Premium Spirits list.

Beam Global Spirits & Wine, the premium spirits business of Fortune Brands has announced a ten year incentive-based agreement with Coca-Cola Amatil in Australia.

Fortune Brands has said it sees a “bright and prosperous future for Beam Global as an independent spirits company”.

Stock posts impressive growth

25 February, 2011

The Stock Spirits Group has announced double digit organic volume growth with total sales volumes of 162.4 million litres in 2010.

SA: Spirits duty rises by 10%

25 February, 2011

The South African government has increased excise duty on spirits by 10% and wine by 8%.

Diageo has struck an agreement to acquire Turkey's "leading" spirits company, Mey Içki.

Beam appoints EMEA president

16 February, 2011

Beam Global Spirits & Wine has appointed Albert Baladi as president of Europe/Middle East/Africa (EMEA), effective March 5.

The US Spirits division of Diageo North America has appointed Mark Hubler as president of Open States and Greg Armstrong president of Control States and National Accounts.

Beam extends leadership roles

02 December, 2010

Beam Global Spirits & Wine has announced expanded leadership roles for executives Bill Newlands, Phil Baldock and Bob Probst.

UK beer brewer Adnams has opened a small-scale distillery, producing vodka, gin and whisky.

The European Spirits Organisation (CEPS) has launched a new five-year commitment to promote responsible drinking.

The economic contribution of Europe's spirits industry to the European economy has been revealed in a new report. The report was prepared by Ernst & Young and commissioned by CEPS – the trade body for the European spirits industry.

The International Spirits Challenge winners were announced at a ceremony in London last night.

SKyy Spirits, Gruppo Campari’s US-based subsidiary, has unveiled a new global ad campaign entitled Skyy Sexy to market its unflavoured vodka brand Skyy Vodka.

International Beverage Holdings is celebrating 49 awards in various international drinks competitions, including 13 awards in the International Spirits Challenge.

Beam Global Spirits & Wine is to push its Maker’s Mark brand in travel retail. A new campaign, created to enhance the travel experience, aims to raise awareness for Maker’s Mark amongst passengers and encompass advertising, in-store education, secondary displays and exclusive travel retail gift packs.

Stock Spirits has launched a 21 year old  single malt Czech whisky. The company believes it to be the only Bohemian single malt in the world.

Beam Global Spirits & Wine, the premium spirits business of Fortune Brands has announced plans to divest three of its German-market local brands. Kuemmerling bitters, Fûrst Bismarck korn/schnapps and Jacobi 1880 brandy are to be sold to Henkell & Co, the second largest distributor of wine and spirits in Germany.

The 2010 Drinks International Millionaires research has been compiled. Based on sales volumes for 2009, this year saw a record number of brands on the list – 162.

Belgium: The European Spirits Organisation CEPS and The European Forum for Responsible Drinking (EFRD) have teamed up with the Belgian Federation of Wine and Spirits to launch a responsible drinking campaign during the World Cup.

India: United Spirits has crossed the milestone of 100 million cases for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2010.

The UK’s Chancellor of the Exchequer has again hit alcoholic drinks with a 2% above inflation price rise on beer, wines and spirits. 10% going on cider

Comment

Joe Bates

Sky-high rents cost duty free dear

One of the biggest bugbears for any liquor brand wanting to build a presence in duty free is the high cost of entry.

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