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Top spirits at the Summit of the Americas

Spirit brands are ready to showcase a broad assortment of new and existing products at the Summit of the Americas in Florida this week, as the show gears up for a second year in its new format.

One of the hottest shows in the travel retail calendar is gearing up for what is sure to be another stellar year. The Duty Free & Travel Retail Summit of the Americas was launched last year, the result of a merger of the flagship events hosted by the International Association of Airport Duty Free Stores (IAADFS) and the Asociación Sudamericana de Tiendas Libres (Asutil). Due to take place from 24­-27 March, this year’s event will boast a bigger and better home at the Hyatt Regency Orlando, in Orlando, Florida.

Those visiting this year’s event will be spoilt for choice, with dozens of leading spirits brands exhibiting their best wares. Guests will be able to sit in on a series of Executive Conference Sessions on the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of the show, when expert speakers will host numerous educational sessions. Talks and discussions will range from ‘Buyer and Supplier panel: Plotting a positive travel retail future in an uncertain world’, ‘Meet the millennials: The tourists to change it all’, and ‘What do we expect from the United States, Brazil and Argentina in 2019? Good news or bad news?’.

Michael Payne, president and CEO of the IAADFS, said: “We think this will be an exciting and vibrant new format, with an expanded trade area, including more private meeting rooms as well as three days of solid executive learning programmes for all attendees. We have also added some new social and networking opportunities.

“The entire summit should not be missed. Spirit fans will find all the major brands present, with ample opportunity to conduct business meetings and enjoy networking with colleagues.”

Click through the following pages to see a selection of unmissable spirits brands to explore at this year’s Summit of the Americas 2019 and where to find them.

Angus Dundee Distillers

Booth: 805

Scotch whisky is enjoying record growth, and Angus Dundee Distillers is ready to showcase its best bottlings to the travel retail world.

The Scotch whisky maker will have a broad assortment of products available for guests to discover, most notably from its two malt distilleries: Tomintoul in Speyside and Glencadem in Brechin, in the east of Scotland.

Angus Dundee’s team will also have a selection of “entry level malt brands” for new whisky drinkers to sample, including blends.

But gin fans also shouldn’t pass up the chance to stop by Angus Dundee’s booth, as the distiller will also be presenting its new gin: Chelsea Royal. Distilled in London from 100% grain spirit, Chelsea Royal Gin is made with botanicals including juniper, coriander, angelica and liquorice root. Angus Dundee is particularly keen to meet Latin American customers as it endeavours to increase its duty free and domestic business in the region.

Duncan Baldwin, regional director at Angus Dundee Distillers, said: “We have been exhibiting at the IAADFS for many years now and we always seem to attract new business each year. The quality of the visitors remains high, even if the footfall seems to get smaller each year.”


Booth: 401

Known for its assortment of innovative Italian wines and spirits, Bottega will be returning to this year’s show with an abundance of products in tow – many of them new, such as Bottega Limoncino Bio. The organic limoncello is made using peels from Femminello Siracusano lemons, organic alcohol, organic sugar and organic lemon essential oils.

Bottega will also be showcasing Gin Bacûr Spray for the first time, which follows hot on the heels of the original Gin Bacûr. The new release is made with juniper berries, sage, lemon zest and pure water from the Alps. The copper-­coloured bottles come with vaporisers to allow bartenders, chefs and confectioners to add an aromatic touch to their creations – and are also recommended sprayed on cigars for an enhanced smoking experience.

Guests will also have the opportunity to preview the new Bottega Ginger Liqueur, which will be officially launched at Vinitaly in April. The organic liqueur aims to tap into the trend for “super foods”, and is made with organic ginger from China and Vietnam.

There’s also a selection of creamy liqueurs, made with cream from the Italian Alps, plus a new version of Nero Bottega, produced with cocoa from Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic.


Booth: 323

It’s been almost a year since Brown-­Forman unveiled a travel retail-exclusive from Tennessee whiskey brand Jack Daniel’s. Since it launched in 2018, Jack Daniel’s Bottled in Bond has been “remarkably well received” by trade members and travellers – and the US-­based drinks group is keen to maintain this momentum at the 2019 Summit of the Americas.

As well as being able to sample the Jack Daniel’s expression at Brown­-Forman’s stand, guests will also have the chance to be among the first to try the soon­-to­-be-­launched limited edition Woodford Reserve Baccarat Edition, which has been finished in ex-­Cognac casks. Set to hit duty free shelves in May, this is the first Bourbon bottled in a crystal decanter by Baccarat, which will be priced at US$1,500.

On top of this, Brown-­Forman will also be bringing a selection of bottlings from its Old Forester Bourbon brand, and Herradura and El Jimador Tequilas.

Aude Bourdier, marketing director, global travel retail and developed Asia Pacific, Brown-­Forman, said: “Shows like the Summit of the Americas provide a wonderful opportunity to broadly showcase our brands as well as a productive environment in which to socialise and conduct business with our customers and partners in a one­-on-­one setting.”

Flor de Caña

While Flor de Caña won’t be exhibiting from a designated stand at this year’s Summit of the Americas, the brand will be serving up a delectable cocktail on Monday 25 March.

The premium rum brand from Nicaragua will create a Flor de Caña­-based cocktail for guests to enjoy, along with Davidoff Cigars and Neuhaus Chocolates.

Imbibers can choose to have their cocktail mixed with Flor de Caña’s 12-­, 18-­, or 25­-year-­old rums.

Furthermore, visitors to the show will have the opportunity to experience the Flor de Caña Ice Volcano.

Flor de Caña described the Summit of the Americas show in Orlando as “a great opportunity to present the brand to the global travel retail audience”.

La Martiniquaise/Bardinet

Booth: 523­-622

French drinks group La Martiniquaise/Bardinet has set its sights on furthering its footprint in the US, and is looking forward to meeting its clients from the US and South America as it pursues its ambitions. The company’s key focus will be on its extensive whisky range – particularly its recently acquired Cutty Sark blended Scotch.

What’s more, visitors will be able to sample Glen Moray’s travel retail­-exclusive expressions if they stop by the La Martiniquaise/Bardinet stand. William Ploquin-­Maurell, international brand manager – corporate communications, said: “The group owns four million-­case brands. Those brands are the Scotch whiskies Label 5 and Sir Edward’s, Poliakov Vodka and Negrita Rum.

“The group’s expertise can also be seen in other categories, such as Saint James Agricole Rhum, Porto Cruz, single malt Scotch whisky Glen Moray and Perlino’s Asti wines. Testifying to its French roots, the group portfolio includes traditional French apéritif and spirit brands such as Bardinet Brandy, Saint­-Vivant Armagnac, St Raphaël Quinquina and Busnel Calvados.

The acquisition of Scotch whisky brand Cutty Sark, founded in 1923, and with annual sales of six million litres, strengthens the group presence in the whisky industry.”

Waldemar Behn

Booth: 625

If you’re looking for an eclectic mix of spirits, be sure to head to booth 625 where German spirits group Waldemar Behn will be exhibiting not only its own brands, but those of all four members of its Family Brands Alliance joint venture.

The global travel retail initiative was established in 2017 by Danzka vodka owner Waldemar Behn and Pallini Limoncello. They have since been joined by Bache­-Gabrielsen Cognac and French gin brand G’Vine.

Visitors can expect to learn about: Danzka the Spirit from Waldemar Behn, a Scandinavian vodka made from raw wheat; Pallini Limoncello, made with lemons hand­picked from the Amalfi coast; G’vine Floraison, a grape spirit­-based gin made with a blend of 10 botanicals; and Bache­-Gabrielsen American Oak, a Cognac matured in new American Tennessee oak barrels.

Tito Gonzalez, regional director Americas, said: “Our goal for this year’s show is to present our Family Alliance brands to the market, and continue the great momentum we are experiencing with our current brands already listed in the major operators throughout the region. “We are excited to be there and hope the other suppliers and customers feel the same way.”

William Grant & Sons

Booth: 711

This year will see William Grant & Sons (WGS) focus on its new Hendrick’s Midsummer Solstice, a limited edition summer solstice-inspired gin. Created by master distiller Lesley Gracie, the gin is the first variant to be released from the Hendrick’s Gin Palace in Scotland. Limited quantities will be available to taste at the stand during the show.

William Grant will also be showcasing new updating packaging for its blended Scotch brand Grant’s for the first time in the Americas.

Last year, the company witnessed “significant growth” in the region, with sales up by 6%.

William Grant & Sons GTR managing director Ed Cottrell said: “We’re delighted to be back in Orlando for the Summit of the Americas. 2018 was a really positive year for WGS, so the team and I are feeling very encouraged for the months ahead.

“Everyone has worked amazingly hard in what can only be described as challenging times, especially in Latin America, but the results speak for themselves and we are confident for great figures in 2019.”

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