The Booze Bin

How Brands Are Mixing New Cocktail Trends into their Campaigns

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Source: Friend & Johnson

Whether you’re a man-bunned mixologist in-the-know, a marketer of luxury spirits or a cocktail-loving consumer, 2017 is a year to cheers to with interesting trends on the horizon. Especially when Euromonitor is estimating that there will be many, many new consumers — 400 million new consumers by 2020 globally for luxury spirits.

Let’s take a look at a few cocktail trends and how smart brands are mixing them into their marketing.

Storytelling

More and more, consumers want to hear the story behind their cocktails. These stories are traded as social currency among millennials, passionately showing their knowledge of a single-malt (ahem, my fiancé’s recent obsession) or linking a spirit or drink’s history back to their own community.

Cooper Spirits created a cool video to promote Slow & Low’s Hochstadter’s Rock and Rye which dates back to the mid-1800s. It’s artfully shot, gritty and has just the right amount of anecdotes, like the fact that the drink was originally sold in pharmacies to cure colds. What they tapped into was this trend of rich storytelling that consumers were eager to hear, resulting in a strong…

PR Industry Trends

Quality over Quantity: 2017 Booze Resolutions

captureWe know. 2017 is going to be YOUR year. The resolutions have been made, the fitness classes have been booked, and the snack cabinet has been padlocked.

And some among us may be opting to drink less alcohol as their resolution for a myriad of reasons, including to lose weight, save money, make smarter texting choices, etcetera. Drinking less alcohol is a goal for many when starting out the new year; binging during the holidays with family and friends can leave a sour taste in one’s mouth and give rise to a renewed determination for cutting back.

No matter the reason, “Dry January” will be a reality for many. For those not quitting cold turkey, quality over quantity may be the best option. So, true to form, we’d like to provide a few choices for those opting to have only the occasional cocktail. To give you the best bang for your alcoholic buck, if you will.

Old World Wines

We foresee 2017 as being a fun, high-quality year that won’t break the bank. You know what’s also high quality and won’t break the bank? Wine from Old Word regions. You can find affordable…

Product Marketing

Health, Wellness and….Booze?

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It’s no secret that health and wellness themes are increasingly a topic of mainstream discussion. Whether it’s the cover of Time magazine or Oprah’s partnership with Deepak Chopra and Weight Watchers, these themes are cropping up in myriad ways.

timeoprahEmbracing a holistic health mindset is becoming popularized – it’s no longer just for the “alternative” or “hippie” crowd. There is a broader recognition of the importance of mental and emotional health, the impact they have upon physical health/energy, and vice versa. Meditation has moved mainstream and “adult play” such as coloring books are on the rise – evidenced in part by the multiple options available for holiday gifts at my local bookstore. Other related movements include increasing sleep, breaks from digital communication, and a push to embrace life outside of work, as well as wellness in the workplace.

In the food realm, it means a “back to basics” approach: a focus on whole foods and ingredient quality more than calories, and fitness for the sake of feeling good versus the number of pounds you hope to lose. Extreme…

The Booze Bin

Holiday Drinking – How to Pace like a Pro

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(image: David L. Reamer)

Alcohol and the holidays—they can be the best of friends or the worst of enemies. When applied wisely, booze can melt away the inherent awkwardness of any family gathering or office party. But alcohol can also summon our inner Grinch. One minute you’re singing “Oh Holy Night” in sweet harmony, the next you’re screaming “UR A RAAACIST!!!” in your grandma’s face.

In these final and booziest days of the year, you’ll come across all kinds of articles on how to pace yourself and your guests. Along with the obvious advice like “drink water,” you’ll often find some more creative/questionable ideas like “start the party with fun, non-alcoholic mocktail” and “eat a big meal first.” To which I would counter: “Has a party that started with a mocktail, started at all?” And “have you ever tried to drink after a big meal?” In my experience, it just ends up with a bunch of people burping into a karaoke machine and going to bed at 9pm.

The advice in these articles typically comes from some well-intended physician. But, with all due respect to my friends in the…

The Booze Bin

Overlooked Wines You Need In Your Life

Few beverages are as old as wine, and thank goodness! I can’t imagine our ancestors making it through the ups and downs of humanity’s evolution without it. I mean, where would the great literature of the world be without wine? Or great romances for that matter? For most of our history as wine drinkers, we have consumed wine like water – literally. Water was too dirty and dangerous to drink for a big chunk of our past, so we drank wine instead.

There are conflicting claims out there, but wine has been around since at least 4,000-5,000 BC. Naturally, there have been tons of regions and people making wine over the centuries as a result. Some of those often fall through the cracks for American wine lovers in their 20s and 30s, mostly due to obscurity, lifestyle, misinformation, or just the sheer volume of available wine in the U.S. Below are my top picks for wines we tend to forget about and why we need to give them the proper pour that they deserve:

Port
class

It’s no secret that Americans don’t do after dinner drinks – we have an

PR Industry Trends

Football, Turkey & Craft Beer: The Ultimate Thanksgiving Pairing Guide 2016

captureAs Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate tradition, I am starting my own Booze Bin tradition by posting my Second Annual “Football, Turkey & Craft Beer Post.” You’ve been waiting for this post all year, haven’t you? Of course you have, because Thanksgiving is awesome! We all know Thanksgiving Day is about bonding: with family, with friends, with food, with conversation, with sports, with fall and with booze. So let’s combine them all, and pair up our Thursday football games with delish beer and food choices, this time with some new recipes and new brews.

Game #1: Appetizer Pre-Game

635834519995547918-sbytab-07-22-2015-decoast-1-t043-2015-07-17-img-zz-main-orange-crush-1-1-e4bajrrd-l643919506-img-zz-main-orange-crush-1-1-e4bajrrdAccording to the NFL, an average 28.4 million viewers watch football on Thanksgiving Day. And we all know that football and beer go hand in hand. That’s a lot of people, drinking a lot of beer. This year, the Minnesota Vikings will take on the Detroit Lions. Brrrrr, that sounds like a cold game. (Side note: Did you know that the Lions play EVERY Thanksgiving Day? Yep. Since 1934. Wondering why? Read the history here.) Food and beer-wise,…

PR Industry Trends

Gin Tonic craze!

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Gin is one spirit that is having its day across the globe. In the form of a Gin Tonic it has become a phenomena and is definitely one of the hottest and most fascinating trends out there. For those not familiar with gin, it is a neutral spirit with base ingredients including malt, corn, rye and/or molasses.  However, it is the use of juniper and other botanicals (coriander seed, citrus peel, licorice root, fennel, etc.) that make gin unique from other neutral spirits like vodka. Each distiller has their own secret recipe that could include a few to multiple botanicals. The most common style is the London Dry, with a flavor based on junipers and citrus. Some of the best known gin brands fall in this style. Other styles you can find are Plymouth (the only gin with a protected designation of origin), Genever (the original gin invented in Holland in the 13th century and used originally as a medical remedy), and several others. Finally, the latest fad in gin is brown colored barrel-aged gin, that has attracted the attention of those into darker spirits like bourbon and whiskey drinkers.

The gin…

The Booze Bin

How the Media Influences What We Eat, Drink and Crave

Recently, the New York chapter of Les Dames D’Escoffier hosted The Next Big Bite, a discussion at the Institute of Culinary Education (ICE), which explored how the media is shaping public conversation and consumption of food and beverages.

Moderated by Martha Teichner, Emmy Award Winning CBS News Correspondent, panelists Chef Carla Hall (ABC’s The Chew, Bravo’s Top Chef, Southern Kitchen Restaurant), Kate Krader (food editor, Bloomberg Pursuits), and Talia Baiocchi (editor-in-chief of punchdrink.com) frankly discussed fads, trends and what they believe to be significant in food and drink.

Trends versus Fads

Let’s start with a quick quiz (as Martha did).

Question: For each of the following, please categorize if they are a trend or a fad?

Gluten-Free
Vegan
Bitter
Casual Dining
Small Plates
Lower-Alcohol Drinks
Specialty Burgers
Corn Ice Cream
Cronuts

Answer: All but the last three were deemed “trends” by the panel. The last three, “fads.”

The consensus was that a trend has a longer curve. There’s a critical mass and a momentum supporting the trend, and it has “legs,” or can grow and evolve into something else – it can be repeated or iterative in slightly different ways. A fad is a “flash in the pan,” something

Branding

Little Brown Lies: Craft Whiskey’s Dirty Little Secret

Distiller Dave Cuttino leaned back in his stool and pushed a short pour of bourbon in my direction. Yet, the way his words punctured my perception of reality, he could have been Morpheus, extending a handful of red pills.

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Dave Cuttino of Reservoir. Basking in artisanal opulence.

Cuttino and his partner Jay Carpenter are the owners, distillers, managers, and pretty much the everything else-ers behind Reservoir distillery in Richmond, Virginia. A tiny operation that has found big success by defying a dirty little secret at work throughout much of the whiskey world.

The craft whiskey renaissance that we appear to be living through, is in many ways one big hand-crafted lie. Or at least, an act of artful artisanal misdirection.

Most of the whiskey brands on the market today don’t actually distill their own stuff. Odds are your favorite “small batch” whiskey actually originates from a company like MPG in Indiana, where oceans of bourbon, rye, vodka and gin, are distilled for dozens, if not hundreds of brands. If that doesn’t take the wind out of your flannel, know that, at the same location, they’re producing “food grade industrial…

The Booze Bin

Halloween 2016: Trick or Booze

Good ol’ October… the most magical time of the year for costume enthusiasts, candy enthusiasts (a.k.a everybody) and, unfortunately for 2016, creepy clowns.

giphyIf Halloween is your thing, and you’re a booze aficionado, alcohol with a spooky slant should make an appearance during your celebrations. And if Halloween’s not your thing, booze can certainly help pass the time while you hide from trick-or-treaters.

To ramp up for the holiday, here are some tipples that will fit in perfectly with your terrifying (or, you know, sort-of scary) decorations.

1. Dawn of the Red

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Look, try not to judge, but I first tried a bottle of this because I’m a fan of puns. I tried the second bottle because I was a fan of the taste. An India Red Ale brewed in Oregon, it has citrusy hop notes and a blood orange color. Enjoy one while sporting zombie attire or being actually undead.

2. The Velvet Devil Merlot

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This Merlot from Washington State is great for the mischievous among us. Notes of dark fruit, cedar, and tobacco are great…