July was a busy month for new whiskies, led by Jack Daniel’s highest-proof whiskey ever and a new series from Bob Dylan’s Heaven’s Door brand. Overall, the ready-to-drink market still saw several name brands jump into the game, with Hard Rock introducing its own spirit-based RTDs and Dos Equis unveiling a new offering. Below is Park Street’s full product release recap for July 2022.
Copper & Kings Releases First-Ever Bourbon
Louisville-located Copper & Kings distillery, known for its brandy and gins, has released its first-ever bourbon. In a move to help drive on-premise traffic, the new Copper & Kings Bourbon is only available through a tasting room experience at the distilleries brick and mortar location. The bourbon is aged for five to six years and finished in brandy barrels, opening with notes of dried fruit and caramel on the nose and tastes of dried apricots and honeysuckle.
Guests attending the “Bottle-Your-Own-Bourbon” experience will get to choose between grape and apple brandy cask finishes, filling their selection straight from the barrel. The bottles are presented in cask-strength 750mL formats for $65 a bottle and $35 for the tour itself. (Source)
Chopin Brings USDA Organic Rye Vodka to the U.S
Polish-based Chopin Vodka has released its first organic vodka into the U.S. market: Chopin Rye Organic. The single ingredient vodka is made from a fully organic heritage rye variety called Dankowskie Ruben that is locally sourced. The product follows strict ecological production requirements and is distilled for 6 months. The vodka will be available for purchase at select retailers in Florida, California, Washington, Texas, and Colorado in 750mL formats for $34.99 a bottle.
“We have taken this mission a step further with Chopin Rye Organic Vodka. We feel the timing is right for Chopin Rye Organic as it is a natural continuation of our commitment to only using the highest quality ingredients for our customers and the environment, at a moment when consumers are increasingly awakened to what they eat and drink” noted Tad Dorda, CEO of Chopin Vodka. (Source)
Jack Daniel’s Unveils Its Highest Proof Whiskey Ever
Brown Forman-owned Jack Daniels has released its Small Batch Special Release Coy Hill High Proof, its highest proof whiskey to date. The new offering is batched at five different proof points in around 55 barrels that were matured at the highest levels of elevation of the Coy Hill warehouses. Tasting notes for the new product include burnt sugar, cooked fruit, and oak flavors. The exclusive whiskey will be available for purchase at the distillery and Tennessee retailers in 375mL formats for $55 a bottle.
“We batched the barrels to craft unique profiles at five proof points highlighting the characteristics of this special liquid and developed a new higher compression cork specifically designed for this expression,” said Jack Daniels master distiller Chris Fletcher. “It’s an exciting time at Jack Daniel’s as we continue to push innovation and experimentation in our whiskey-making while showcasing everything the Jack Daniel Distillery has to offer.” (Source)
Sonic to Release Hard Southern Sweet Tea & Hard Slush
Following the success of its hard seltzer launch earlier this year, Sonic, in partnership with COOP Ale Works, has released two new SKUs: SONIC Hard Southern Sweet Tea and SONIC Hard Slush. The Hard Southern Sweet Tea will contain an ABV of 5% and retail in 12oz can 12-packs as well as single can 24oz formats. The 6% ABV Hard Slush will appear in Cherry Limeade, Watermelon, and Blue Rasberry varieties. The new offerings will be available at retail locations across 38 U.S. states.
“After tremendous support and response from across the country for SONIC Hard Seltzer, it became clear that the SONIC fan is enjoying the experience of their favorite SONIC beverages in adult form. Adult Hard Tea and Adult Hard Slush are natural brand extensions, and we are all excited for our fans to be able to try these amazing flavors,” noted Sean Mossman, President of COOP Beverage Works. (Source)
Hard Rock Unveils Spirits-Based RTDs
The internationally recognized hospitality brand, Hard Rock International, has launched its new line of ready-to-drink canned cocktails. The new rollout includes three varieties: Mojito, Moscow Mule, and Margarita: all of which were inspired by the on-premise cocktails at the brand’s brick-and-mortar locations. The new line will appear in single flavor 4-pack formats as well as mixed flavor 6-pack formats which will retail at $12.99 and $19.99 respectively. Each 12oz can contains 8% ABV.
“We’re excited to further extend the brand into the fastest growing spirits category of RTD cocktails offering our international fan base the chance to bring Hard Rock home,” said Kimberly Manna, senior vice president of retail and licensing for Hard Rock International. (Source)
TRUE Believers is Bringing its Sustainable Craft Spirits Portfolio to the US
In partnership with ecoSPIRITS, True Believers have launched its craft spirits brands in the U.S. market. The company has brought in Chris Hopkins and his group Drinx+ to lead U.S. growth and connect the True Believers portfolio to national distributors and retailers. Park Street has also signed on as the exclusive import partner for True Believers and will help bring the companies Tried & True Vodka, Widges Gin, Mackintosh Blended Malt Whisky, and Arquitecto Tequila brands into the California, New York, and Flordia markets.
“We created these brands to be quality craft spirits for industry professionals. True Believers will be some of the first brands to launch using the ecoSPIRITS technology in the USA which is scheduled to kick off in September. This will allow us to bring true craft products to the house pour market and we can’t wait to see how bartenders react,” noted Zdenek Kastanek, Managing Director USA for ecoSPIRITS. (Source)
Barefoot Wine Unveil Lower-Calorie Wines
Major wine player Barefoot Wines added three new low-calorie SKUs to its existing lineup. The release will feature three varieties: Bright & Breezy Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, and Rose. Catering to a consumer base more concerned with health-oriented products than ever, the new offerings are meant to be fruit forwards and light-bodied with a clean finish. Each wine in the rollout contains 70 calories, and two grams of sugar, and comes in at 6% ABV.
“Barefoot Bright and Breezy is a great example of us widening our offerings, as these additions are delicious, light-bodied, and lower-calorie. Similar to our other varietals, Barefoot Bright and Breezy wines are crafted to be fruit-forward, food-friendly wines that consumers can enjoy at home or together with family and friends” noted Barefoot winemaker Jen Wall. (Source)
Dos Equis Cans Margarita Classic Lime RTD
Heineken-owned Dos Equis has joined the RTD party with the launch of Dos Equis Margarita Classic Lime. The new ready-to-drink canned cocktail is part of a recent push by the Dos Equis brand to expand its portfolio of agave spirit products. Made with Blanco tequila, the new offering contains 10% ABV in each 12oz can. The new RTD will be available in 4-pack formats in 8 U.S. states, expanding to 10 by September.
“We are excited to bring our first ever spirits product, Dos Equis Margarita Classic Lime, to the U.S. market which spotlights our commitment to innovation at Heineken USA and Dos Equis. Dos Equis is a credible quality brand born in Mexico, and we wanted to bring the excitement that consumers have for a traditional margarita to a can to save them the time and hassle of having to make it themselves” said Hannah Dray, Dos Equis brand director. (Source)
Bob Dylan Launches Heaven’s Door Decade Series
Heaven’s Door, the American whiskey brand of Bob Dylan, has launched a limited edition lineup: the Decade Series. The Heaven’s Door Decade Series has been in the works for some time with its founders’ hand-selecting barrels from small producers across the country 10 years ago. The Decade Series Release #01 is the first of this rollout and comes in the form of a high-rye 10-year straight bourbon whiskey. On the nose, the whiskey gives hints of maple and butterscotch while one tastes toffee and bitter chocolate on their palate. The 50% ABV offering will be available to purchase nationwide through ReserveBar at SRP of $99 per bottle.
“We’ve been patiently waiting on our barrels of aged liquid to mature to the optimal flavor profile for many years, and we are thrilled to release them for our fans to enjoy. When we sourced these barrels from our industry partners years ago, the product was phenomenal, but we purposely let some of them sit for several additional years to get even better” noted Heaven’s Door Master Blender Ryan Perry. (Source)
Constellation Debuts Woodbridge Wine Soda, Aiming To Attract New Drinkers
In a move aimed at introducing U.S. consumers to a new category, Constellation Brands is rolling out a line of wine sodas: Woodbridge Wine Soda. The new offerings will initially appear in three varieties: Grapefruit, Lemon Lime and Orange Soda. According to Impact Databank, Woodbridge is the fifth largest wine brand in the U.S. and is looking to replace its wine seltzer line which was discontinued last year. The 250mL cans will appear in 6-pack variety formats, retailing nationwide for between $11-13.
“We know many drinkers want something other than traditional varietal wines, which inspired us to create Woodbridge Wine Sodas to provide consumers with a new way to experience and enjoy wine that is less formal and more fun,” noted Woodbridge brand vice president Serena Shrivastava. (Source)
Casa Lumbre Debuts ‘First’ Premium Cristalino Mezcal
Cristalino Mezcal, a category building serious momentum in the agave world, is getting its newest entrant with news that Casa Lumbre will roll out its Contraluz Cristalino. The premium artisanal mezcal is made using a novel filtration process that uses activated charcoal to process Espadin agave, that the brand ages for six months in American oak barrels. The result is a clear, smooth liquid that retains the true character of traditional mezcal. The new expression is currently available in 9 states across the U.S. for an SRP of $59.99 per bottle.
Casa Lumbre CEO and co-founder Moises Guindi said: “Contraluz exemplifies the standard we so proudly set out for ourselves since day one. This addition to our portfolio is deeply grounded in the cultural authenticity and artisanship that is emblematic of our company, and embodies our spirit of innovation.” (Source)
Old Forester’s Next Release in the 117 Series: Whiskey Row Fire
Heaven Hill-owned Old Forester is back with the newest edition in its The 117 Series: Whiskey Row Fire. The new offering pays homage to the 7th anniversary of the fire on Whiskey Row which nearly destroyed this historic section of Louisville. The limited edition lineup, which debuted last spring, uses barrels that were filled the day of the fire, hand-picked by men and women of the fire team which fought the blaze.
Whiskey Row Fire has notes of sweet honeycomb on the nose and tastes of brown sugar and vanilla. Bottled at 100 proof, the expression is available this July through the brand’s online store at an SRP of $59.99. (Source)