January is here and it’s time for a change. This year, instead of Dry January we’re taking the chance to try something new and different with Try January. With so many great products on the market and our range constantly changing it’s a time to blow away the winter blues and try some great new products in your outlet.
We support Try January as a way of combating the effects of Dry January which can quickly unwrap all the hard work that goes into Christmas trading. We will happily be doing so again this year so get in touch with your account manager to see how we can help with interesting products and importantly, POS support enabling you to market the concept to your customers and prise them away from a soda and lime.
Try January isn’t about stopping people from going dry, in fact, for these customers trying something new means it’s not all doom and gloom as some superb new soft drinks hit our depots such as the new Fentimans sparkling Lime & Jasmine. A refreshing mix of bitterness and sweetness botanically brewed for a simply delicious taste. The ethical fair trade Karma Cola range and the naturally fresh Firefly Juice range are also great choices.
For the beer drinkers Category Development Manager – Beer, Justin Wylde recommends trying a London based family brewer which has just been listed here at Matthew Clark, Fourpour. “All in 330ml cans this core range of four beers showcases the best of what these brothers are producing,” says Justin, adding that Fourpure was named Most Innovative and Brewery Business of the Year 2017 at the Society of Independent Brewers annual awards evening.
I reached out to our Spirit Development Specialists for some guidance on what to recommend people try. Neil Webb, who looks after our spirit customers in London recommends trying fortified wines with tonic. “Fino Sherry is a fantastic replacement for the Gin in your G&T, XECO Fino sherry which is new to the UK market mixed with Primrose Hill Tonic has plenty of depth of flavour,” notes Neil, “white port is another interesting replacement for gin, mixed with a classic tonic and a citrus garnish”.
Neil is also advocating a move away from gin-based serves, insisting “rum is back in a big way, and if you are looking for a classic way to enjoy this drink then look no further than a rum and ginger. If you want something light in flavour you can use a young rum with ginger ale, and if you are looking for a real kick you can use an aged rum with ginger beer”. In the spirit of trying something completely new Neil adds “try Yaguara Branca Cachaca (XR) and mix and match to find your favourite combination”.
Ian Daws, our Spirit Development Specialist working across the south of England thinks it’s time to take a second look at saké. “Saké has many forms and in the realms of premium grade saké there is a scale for the types available to the consumer”, says Ian, “Honjozo-shu is the entry level to the premium grades, it has an umami earthy style and can be served at temperatures ranging from 10 degrees to 55 degrees, an option that doesn’t apply to all styles of saké!”.
“Junmai Daiginjo is fruitier than the Honjozo style and shows flavour characteristics on the nose such as melon, lemon, bitter orange and green grass” notes Ian. “This little cracker follows up with more lemon and bitter orange but is balanced with beautiful minerality,” Ian adds, “ideally serve this one chilled to experience the tropical fruit elements, no ice, straight into a wine glass or Champagne flute”.
If you are not quite brave enough to jump straight into the saké category, Ian recommends you try the fruitier option of Umeshu. “This is produced by soaking Ume plums in high-grade saké for an extended period of time,” Ian informs, “the result is plum and nuttiness on the nose with white pepper spice, plum and prune on the palate; it’s a lot sweeter in style so the approach to this liquid is a great stepping stone into the category.”
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