While the unstable economic climate has caused many consumers to scale back on product purchases, craft beer seems to be keeping up a steady upward trajectory. A report from Mintel says that craft beer sales have nearly doubled in the past five years, with projections for the industry to significantly increase further in the next several years. [Mintel]
The Sazerac Company is launching a new line of vodkas called Epic to compete in the unstoppable vodka market. The vodkas — which of course are flavored — include: Peach, Whipped Cream, Kiwi Strawberry, Cherry, Cake and Coconut. The first shipment of this latest bout of flavored goodness will arrive later next month. [PR Newswire]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.24.2013 – The Rise of Craft Beer and Epic Vodka” »
This one’s been making the rounds of late at your favorite internet watering hole: talk of Sazerac/Buffalo Trace now developing something it’s calling Stagg Jr., a presumed spinoff of its wildly popular George T. Stagg whiskey. According to these papers filed with the Alcohol Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, Stagg Jr. will be near or about 100 proof and will be unfiltered. No word yet on a release date, and an inquiry to Buffalo Trace has been made for further comment. In addition to Stagg Jr., Buffalo Trace looks like it is gearing up to add a couple more small batch bourbons to their lineup. More updates once we get them, but in the meantime, here’s a major tip of the hat to the internet sleuth who was vigilant enough to dig this information up. [Team Internet]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.23.13 – The Rise of Stagg Jr.” »
Continuing on with the Inauguration celebration happenings in Washington D.C., NPR profiles D.C. bartender Jim Hewes, who has served Presidents since the Ford Administration. The article also serves up a couple of snappy recipes inspired by former Presidents. [NPR]
In a move that screams of indulgence and potential over marketing, Beck’s beer has opened up a pop-up “jewelry store” in Los Angeles to celebrate the launch of its new brand, Beck’s Sapphire. The first of several slated locations to open (Chicago, New York, and Miami will all follow suit in 2013), the opening party hosted celebrities plus a supermodel walking a panther adorned with a Sapphire gem on a leash, up and down Rodeo drive. Footage of the momentous occasion (shot on Leica cameras with clothing by Hugo Boss) will be online later this month. It’s early in 2013, but we’re hoping that someone in a marketing department somewhere will be able to trump the indulgence of this campaign. [Beck's Sapphire]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.21.2013 – Inauguration, Beck’s Sapphire, and Two-Fifty Buck Chuck” »
Glenmorangie is slated to release the latest installment in its Private Edition range in 2013. Ealanta (Gaelic for “skilled and ingenious”) is a 19-year-old malt matured exclusively in a virgin American white oak cask from the Mark Twain National Forest in the Ozark Mountains. A limited edition of 1,500 has been earmarked for the US market. [PR Newswire]
Where Sundance used to be exclusively about film and cinema, it has now become a major site for campaign launches of all sorts. This Friday, Belgian beer Stella Artois will host a party unveiling a new visual campaign shot for the company by iconic photographer Annie Leibovitz. The party will mark the beginning of the campaign/onslaught, which will be featured heavily in major magazines and media outlets throughout 2013. [PR Newswire]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.17.2013 – Rare Cognac, N*E*R*Ds, and Mark Twain” »
As promised, Silicon Valley Bank made its Annual State of the Wine Industry Report in a live broadcast earlier today. There were several issues touched upon during the conference, including these:
- The general financial condition of the wine industry continues to improve at a slow and steady pace.
- 2012 produced the rarest of events: large yields coincident with outstanding quality across all Western U.S. growing regions.
- Wine businesses expect to increase bottle prices slightly; however, SVB believes that will prove difficult in 2013.
- Mergers and acquisitions of vineyards and wineries will continue at a record pace.
- Massive bulk imports will continue to dominate the lowest price point wine categories.
- Direct-to-consumer sales will continue as the largest growth channel for most wineries.
The full report is available via its website. [Silicon Valley Bank]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.15.2013 – Silicon Valley Bank Issues Annual State of the Wine Industry Report” »
In what could only qualify as a major victory for bourbon drinkers, Diageo has announced plans to re-start production at the famed Stitzel-Weller distillery in Kentucky. John Hansell announced via the Whisky Advocate blog on Sunday that plans have been underway for a bit, but a formal announcement wasn’t made until this past weekend. For those unfamiliar with the history of the distillery, scholar and gentleman Chuck Cowdery gives a brief overview and the ramifications of such an announcement, and Sour Mash Manifesto has a more in-depth look at the distillery history. [Whisky Advocate]
Michelin 3-Star chef Daniel Boulud has announced he will be collaborating with The Dalmore to create his own special line of single malts. The blends will be available exclusively at his restaurants starting later this spring, starting with his eponymous Daniel restaurant and Café Boulud. [Eater]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.14.2013 – Stitzel Weller Distillery Reboots” »
Fox News reported and we decided booze is better anyways: A new study presented at the Annual Academy of Neurology meeting this week in San Diego suggesting that people who consume four cups or cans of soda a day were 30% more likely to suffer from depression than those who drank no soda. When reached for comment a spokesperson for the soft drink industry turned on The Cure, curled up in a ball, and wept silently in a corner for six hours. [Fox News]
While Obamacare may not be something all Americans can agree upon, something which could get many of us to a consensus is the fact that it is pretty interesting he has his own brew. The Today Show reported this morning that a single bottle of Obamabeer – The Honey Ale – went for $1,200 at a recent charity auction. Of course, you can always save yourself some change and get the recipe straight from us. You’re welcome. [Today]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.11.2013 – Beer and Bourbon Edition” »
The BBC offers up this report with the pretty official sounding title “How Scotch Whisky Conquered The World.” A textual precursor to its investigative report “Scotched Earth,” it details just how Scotch has made its mark and continues to do so worldwide. [BBC]
Devotees of Drinkhacker will be familiar the name Wemyss from recent review coverage we’ve given to its expressions. This morning we’ve received word that Wemyss will be developing a new distillery and visitor center in Fife, Scotland. Funded in part via a grant from the Scottish government, plans are underway to have the facility up and running by early 2014. [via press release]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.09.2013 – Scotch and Wine Compete For World Dominance” »
Celebrity Product Brand Launch of the Week: This time around we get an actual A-List celebrity jumping in the ever-growing fray. The Spirits Business reports that actor George Clooney and business partner Rande Gerber are planning to launch their own tequila, Casamigos, later this January. No doubt it will be just as smooth as the characters Clooney plays on the silver screen. [Spirits Business]
Liqueur maker St. Germain (which can lay claim to one of the very few and precious A+ ratings on this site) is offering via its website a very limited edition St. Germain bicycle to transport its elderflowery goodness in a bottle to and from your next lawn or garden party. [St. Germain]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.07.2013 – Clooney Makes Tequila Even Smoother” »
January seems to be starting off with a bang for hops lovers. Determined to make Rhode Island famous for something beyond Family Guy, Foolproof Brewery marks its arrival onto the microbrew scene with three year-round beers: an American golden ale, a porter, and an IPA, plus the promise of a rotation of seasonal beers throughout the year. [Foolproof Brewery]
Elsewhere in the nation, Dangerous Man Brewing Company of Minneapolis has announced that its brand new brewing facility and tap room will be opening January 25th. Like its erstwhile cousin in Rhode Island, the company pledges to offer several of its own year-round and specialty craft beers to the Minneapolis metropolis. [Dangerous Man]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.04.2013 – Hooray For Beer and Other Delights” »
Michigan State professor Philip Howard has constructed an absolutely stunning data visualization of the wine industry in the United States. It appears to be incredibly thorough, and we found it a fun game to try to find something that was missed. This is an impressive study worth your time and attention. You can find the full report here. [Business Insider]
NPR’s Marketplace covers the potential big for AB/InBev to acquire Mexico’s Groupo Modelo, makers of Corona and Pacifico. Much like the major music label industry mergers of the past decade, this acquisition of one giant by another could create a monster that dominates the world of beer. Developing. [NPR Marketplace]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 01.03.2013 – AB/InBev Potential Acquisitions + 99 Year Bourbon” »
Just one day until the Mayans and everyone who posts REM’s “It’s The End of The World As We Know It” on Facebook is proven wrong. Or right. Either way, there’s a more important holiday today. Did you know the 20th is National Sangria Day? It is!
A bit of trivia for you: Sangria is a drink whose origins are from Spain, and derives from the word sangre, which means blood. Aside from National Lager Day, this may be the best holiday in all of December!
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads –12.20.2012 – Rare Bowmore Sold + Whiskey Toothpaste” »
CELEBRITY BRAND PRODUCT LAUNCH OF THE WEEK: The latest celebrity-turned-aspiring spirits expert to jump into the arena is retired NBA superstar Shaquille O’Neal. Sports Illustrated reports that his gluten-free vodka, Luv Shaq, is slated for release in early 2013. It is slated to compete with Diddy’s Ciroc brand, and it will be produced by Devotion Vodka, which previously counted reality show personality The Situation (pre-rehab) as its spokesman. [Sports Illustrated]
Drinks Business runs a feature on its most-read stories from 2012, and while there are a few that are quite amusing, the top selection still remains a heartbreaker even after reading it months ago. [Drinks Business]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 12.19.2012 – Shaq Vodqa Attaq” »
Bloomberg reports that sales of wine at major auction houses have fallen 12% in 2012, down roughly $75 million from last year’s record-setting gross of $397 million. Analysts attribute this decrease to sluggish purchasing from China due to slow economic growth. Bloomberg also took a moment to profile Richard Yuengling Jr. of Yuengling Beer fame to find out the secret behind the brand’s success. [Bloomberg]
End of Times List: In a mildly refreshing (and somewhat bleak) alternative to the onslaught of “end of year” lists, our fair and balanced friends over at Fox News have decided to feature wine selections appropriate for celebrating the apocalypse. [Fox News]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads 12.18.2012 – Wine Sales Decline at Auction Houses” »
The New York Times is reporting the arrival of a new line of beers based on the hit HBO series Game Of Thrones. The first offering, Iron Throne Blonde Ale, will arrive in time for the Season 3 premiere this March, with more editions to follow. [New York Times]
The Daily Beast offers a review of William Knoedelseder’s expansive history of the 150 year history of the Anheuser-Busch family empire, its ultimate downfall, and eventual purchase by InBev. [Daily Beast]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 12.17.2012 – Game of Thrones Gets a Beer” »
From the high-end stores to the corner stores, people around the world were waiting in lines yesterday for the release of Westvleteren XII, regarded by many as the world’s best beer. The decision to do a mass release was simple: the monks who craft the fine brew needed a new roof for their abbey. [ABC News]
The Wall Street Journal is elaborating on (and correcting) the story regarding Robert Parker and Wine Advocate magazine. To sum it all up: the headquarters will be staying in Maryland, with the Singapore office opening as a secondary office where some editorial and business administration affairs will happen. Also, the print edition will not be phased out any time in the foreseeable future. [Wall Street Journal]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads 12.13.2012 – Westvleteren XII Madness” »
Happy 12/12/12 Day! Just a few more days until we figure out whether or not the Mayans were spot on in the apocalyptic assessment. But before the end of the world hits, you might want to spend a few minutes checking out our 2012 Holiday Gift Guide.
Johnnie Walker has opened up yet another super exclusive VIP whisky club, this time in Beijing. There, people will be able to meet with master blenders to create their own personal expression of Walker, starting at about £80,000. Guests are also encouraged to make their own whisky-inspired art, which will then hang on the walls as part of the house’s art collection. No photos yet, but if it is anything like the Walker House in Shanghai, it has to be incredible. [Real Times]
Absolut has hired Canadian advertising wizards/marketing gurus Sid Lee to spearhead its marketing initiatives for 2013, giving the brand a shot in the arm in terms of creativity and experimentation. Stay tuned to see the work throughout the year and if the gamble pays off. [Sid Lee]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker 12.12.2012 – House of Johnnie Walker Launches in Beijing” »
Technomic has released its predictions for top adult beverage trends in the coming year. Among them: wines will get sweeter, beers will be more carefully curated in restaurants, and more flavored spirits expressions will keep popping up, and not just in the vodka category. [Technomic]
In semi-related coverage, Slate offers an explanation as to how so many new brands of whiskey are appearing so quickly. The answer? Follow the distillate… [Slate]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 12.11.2012 – Top Trends For 2013” »
Normally we try to land softly into news on Mondays, but this one is too insane not to lead off with: Reuters is reporting drink giant Diageo is in talks with Suntory to make a joint purchase of Beam Global. Though no formal talks have begun and the deal is allegedly in the early stages, the implications of such a purchase could potentially be huge to the whiskey world. Story still developing, but we’ll be watching the events with great interest. [Reuters]
In other surprising Monday news, Decanter is reporting Robert Parker will be stepping down as Editor-In-Chief of Wine Advocate magazine, and will be opening up new offices in Singapore to enhance coverage of Asian-produced wines. Parker will stay on as CEO of Wine Advocate and remain chairman of its board. [Decanter]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 12.10.2012 – Diageo and Suntory Bid Big on Beam and Robert Parker Steps Down” »
Scaling to new heights of absurdity, professional buffoonist, game show host, and hair magnate Donald Trump is at it again, according to the Huffington Post. Fresh off of his wildly successful expedition to discover the truth behind the President’s birth certificate, Trump is now calling for a boycott and ban on Glenfiddich at all of his resorts and hair salons. Why, you ask? Because William Grant and Sons, owner of Glenfiddich, awarded Michael Forbes the “Top Scot” award for refusing to sell his farm to the former Macy’s and Pizza Hut ad spokesman. [Huffington Post]
Yesterday we brought you the news of Wine.Com’s top 100, and today we find Wine Enthusiast bringing us its Top 100 Best Buys, Top 100 Cellar Selections, and The Enthusiast’s Top 100. There’s plenty to sift through here and it comes complete with a fancy infographic breaking it all down, if you’re interested in that sort of thing. [Wine Enthusiast]
Continue reading “Drinkhacker Reads – 12.06.2012 – Trump in Huff over Glenfiddich Stuff” »