Seek out the shorts, dust off those dresses, and prepare for acres of exposed white flesh... the Great British summer is just around the corner. But what will we be sipping and slurping?
Pimm's Cider Cup
From posh Southerners' summer tipple to hipster fruit cider, the Pimm's brand is undergoing a transformation. The blend of "British cider and Pimm's" is an attempt to tap into the growth of fruit ciders and spiders (spirit ciders), and the new variant will be boosted with a £1.1m marketing boost this summer. Bottoms up, trendy folk of Shoreditch!
Korev Cornish lager
St Austell Brewery
Surf's up for this "uniquely Cornish lager," sales of which grew by more than half last year. Brewer St Austell has ambitious plans for the brand, including a three-year deal signed in January that made it the Official Beer of British Surfing. To build on the
partnership, this month the brewery is launching its #korevpeople campaign, which aims to bring a bit of surf life to pubs.
Jim Beam Apple
It's Bourbon, Jim, but not as we know it: this is the fourth variant to join the Jim Beam range in as many years, as the company searches for ways to bring new drinkers into the category. For this apple version, distributor Maxxium will be pushing a signature serve, the
Apple Splash (one part Jim Beam Apple, two parts tonic, served over ice with a wedge of lemon), which will be featured in TV ads to run
through June and July.
Wine on Tap
Bibendum PLB Group
Though by no means the only wine
merchant to offer draught wine these days, Bibendum's range, launched in April, is one of the most extensive. It comprises a total of nine wines, including a pinot grigio, a sauvignon blanc and a malbec. The company says keg wine is shedding its poor-quality image and that there is a "real buzz" around it right now, following an explosion in wine on tap in the US around three years ago.
Named not after the American road but instead the 56 roots, spices and fruits that go into every bottle of Jägermeister itself. This is a mix of Jägermeister & ginger beer, garnished with cucumber & lime. It is hoped the long mixed drink will move the shot brand into new territory and a new multi-million-pound campaign has been launched to "tap into changing tastes with a serve suited to year-round enjoyment" and to boost trial in pubs and bars.
Old Rosie with Elderflower / Rhubarb / Cloudy Lemonade
The Herefordshire-based cider maker is hoping still cider can shed its scrumpy image, with the launch of this trio of fruit-flavoured bag-in-box ciders. Under
the banner of
the three variants —
Old Rosie with Elderflower, Old Rosie with Rhubarb and Old Rosie with Cloudy Lemonade — will be available to drinkers in pubs and bars, for around £3.50 a pint, from this month until the end of August.
Guinness Golden Ale
This golden version of the Black Stuff is the third beer to emerge from the new Guinness Brewers Project, which also spawned the hugely successful Guinness Dublin and West Indies
Porters, unveiled last autumn. The big question now, is how long we'll have to wait for the UK launch of Guinness lager Hop House 13 — already going down a storm in its native Ireland.
Strongbow Cloudy Apple
We've had posh Foster's (Foster's Gold, launched back in 2011) and now Heineken is going for a more discerning cider drinker with posh Strongbow.
The 4.5 per cent ABV sparkling cider that is Strongbow Cloudy Apple is set to sell at a 10 per cent premium compared with a pint of standard "Bow" as the company looks to drive value, as well as volume, in the draught cider category.
Schweppes Sparkling Juice
Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE)
With more adults dropping alcohol from their diets, it's no surprise some of the
bigger soft drink suppliers are turning their attention to the growing number of "straight drinkers." CCE's offer is a two-strong range of sparkling juice drinks under the Schweppes brand, unveiled last month. The low-calorie drinks — just 20kcal per 100ml — are aimed at over-35s. They are being boosted with a multi-million-pound campaign with the slogan "separating men from boys, separating women from girls."
With eight types of purée, two types of syrup and another eight cocktail pre-mixes available, this US range of quick cocktails is aiming at UK pubs. For this summer distributor Cellar Trends is recommending that Mexican classic, the Margarita — but no muddling, shaking
or straining is required.
Just add 50ml of tequila to 100ml of Finest Call premix, stir and serve.
Brewed in the same Swedish location as its sister fruit ciders, Kopparberg, this is the first time Fagerhult has been available outside of its homeland. Described as a "stubbornly Swedish" beer, it is claimed that the 4.8 per cent lager was first brewed to slake the thirst of returning elk hunters. In the UK it will be hunting for a slice of the craft beer market, taking aim at the growing number of British and American craft canned brands.
Bombardier Burning Gold
This 4.1 per cent ABV seasonal brew proved so Bang On for cask beer fans that the Bombardier brewing team made it a permanent part of the range earlier this year — huzzah! Charles Wells is also putting some serious marketing spend behind it, with a new TV campaign starring
comedian Bob Mortimer, who replaces the sadly departed Rik Mayall.
Bacardi Brown-Forman Brands
Who wouldn't want the Ultimate Gin & Tonic? That's what the Bombay
Sapphire team are striving for. They are recommending a 1:2 ratio of gin to tonic water with plenty of ice, a gentle squeeze of lime and it must, must, must be served in an oversized balloon glass.
"The bowl shape of the glass means it is ideal for capturing the aroma of Bombay Sapphire gin and using a stemmed glass helps keep the serve cooler for longer," explains brand ambassador Sean Ware.
Rekorderlig Dry Äpple
In a move that all but proves everything
comes back into fashion eventually (apart from, perhaps, frosted blue eyeshadow) fruit cider band
Rekorderlig added an apple version to its range in March. The five per cent ABV cider has been designed to grab a slice of the premium apple cider sector, which after years of neglect, is about to undergo a huge revival.
Named after an island in the Thames, just minutes from the London brewery's HQ, this is a new permanent addition to the Fuller's beer portfolio. No surprise that it's a golden ale — the style now accounts for one in every five pints of cask beer sold, up from one in 10 five years ago, according to CGA stats. This one is made with pale and cara gold malt, goldings and liberty hops and a touch of orange peel, for an easy-drinking pint.
Greene King IPA
Despite the onslaught of trendy, hoppy, bitter upstarts to the IPA category, this
stalwart is proving it is still relevant with a bold makeover revealed earlier this year.
The new copper-coloured branding is intended to help it stand out in what has become a crowded market, while a mystery shopper programme has been launched at the same time, to ensure pints taste as good as they now look.
Malibu Piña Colada
Last year July 10 was declared National Piña Colada day and pubs and bars were urged to get involved by holding Piña Colada parties. The celebrations were spearheaded by Malibu, with brand owner Pernod Ricard supplying bunting, posters and a website full of ideas to licensees looking to join the fun. Served in Malibu branded coconut cups (so popular the company struggled to keep up with demand), the classic Piña Colada is made with 50ml of Malibu, 10ml of lime juice, 75ml of pineapple juice and 50ml of coconut milk or cream. Commercial director Chris Ellis says: "We'll be championing National Piña Colada Day again this year on Friday July 10."
Gancia Asti Metodo Classico
For those dismissing Asti as an overly sweet, retro wine, let us urge you to reassess. This offering, from Canelli — the birthplace of the wine style in Italy — is a single-vintage, bottle-fermented version of the '80s favourite, which has been aged on lees for two years. Matthew Clark wine buyer Siobhan Irons calls it a "sweet, sparkler with aromas of acacia flowers, peach, apricot and grape," and recommends it with salads. Yes, that's right — a wine with aromas of grape.
Somersby Apple Burst, Somersby Cranberry and Somersby Blackberry
Launched in January this year, these three new flavours of
Somersby will be supported with a £7m campaign for the brand, which experienced
101 per cent volume growth year on year in pubs and bars, according to owner Carlsberg UK. The
campaign introduces the Lord Somersby character to a UK audience for the first time — the fictional, eccentric English gentleman who
"created" the cider.
Aimed at sophisticated 25 to 35-year-olds this posh, sparkling, version of J2O should be served in a champagne flute, according to brand owner Britvic, whichis putting a hefty £1.5m marketing spend behind the launch. It comes in three flavours — Pear & Raspberry, Apple & Watermelon and Peach & Apricot — and a promised celebrity tie-up for the brand will add a "touch of glamour" to soft drinks sales this summer, the company says.
It might sound like a
Native American craft beer but in actual fact this is an Irish brew.
Franciscan Well, the Cork-based brewery acquired by Molson Coors back in 2013, released this draught beer in the UK last November. Designed to be a more "evenly balanced" IPA than some of the trendier highly hopped offers, this has a rich malt sweetness and pairs well with food.