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Top 10 spirits launches in March 2020

A new Johnnie Walker bottling to celebrate women, Martini’s non-alcoholic aperitivos and a Dewar’s whisky finished in mezcal casks were among the best products unveiled last month.

SB presents its pick of the most exciting spirits to launch in March

In March, a number of line extensions were revealed, including a new Bombay Sapphire gin, Martini aperitivos made without alcohol and a 27-year-old Redbreast Irish whiskey.

It was a busy month for spirits as producers tapped into new flavour trends, the low-alcohol category and experimented with unusual casks.

In addition, Brewdog made its mark on Asian spirit shochu, while Diageo brought back its Jane Walker bottling to celebrate its new women-themed initiative.

Click through the following pages to explore our full round-up of eye-catching spirits launched in March.

Which new products grabbed your attention last month? If we’ve missed your favourite, let us know in the comments box below.

Bombay Bramble

The latest expression from Bacardi-owned Bombay Sapphire “pushes the boundaries of flavour and colour” by combining the brand’s gin with a ‘real’ fruit infusion to provide a “distinct crimson colour and natural flavour”.

The new gin is said to challenge the “common practice of other flavoured gins on the market which often use concentrates, additional sugars and additives to flavour the liquid”.

Bottled at 37.5% ABV, the bottling is inspired by the eponymous gin-based cocktail Bramble.

For more information, click here.

Captain Morgan Tiki

The new Captain Morgan Tiki is a tropical rum-based spirit drink, said to be “packed with pineapple and mango flavours”.

It has been created to tap into the “growing trend for lighter coloured mixers, such as lemonade which has seen a 27% increase in growth over the last two years” according to Kantar figures. As such, the rum is recommended served over ice with lemonade.

The 25% ABV Captain Morgan Tiki is available to buy in the UK, Czech Republic and as a limited edition bottling in Germany.

For more information, click here.

Dewar’s Ilegal Smooth


Following a relaxation on the type of casks that can be used to finish Scotch whisky last year, Dewar’s got experimental with mezcal casks for its latest bottling.

Dewar’s Ilegal Smooth is made by finishing eight-year-old Dewar’s, which has already been double-aged, in ex-Ilegal Mezcal casks for one month.

Stephanie Macleod, Dewar’s master blender, said: “It’s something we’ve never done before, I don’t think the Scotch whisky industry has released something like this. It’s a beautiful product.”

It is the second cask-finished whisky from Dewar’s following the launch of Caribbean Smooth in 2019.

For more information, click here.

Franklin & Sons’ new mixers


As the trend for mixers that compliment dark spirits continues, Global Brands-owned Franklin & Sons added two new expressions to its Mixer Collection.

The non-quinine Mixer Collection has been designed to push the boundaries of traditional ginger ales and cola, creating more flavour options for mixing with rum, whisky, Tequila, Bourbon and vermouth.

The Mandarin Mixer with Ginger is a twist on ginger ale, while the Pineapple Mixer with Almond was inspired by ingredients grown in tropical destinations, pineapple being one such ingredient, as well as the use of almond in tiki drinks, such as the Mai Tai.

For more information, click here.

Gordon’s White Peach Distilled Gin

Diageo’s Gordon’s gin brand extended its flavoured range last month with the launch of a new limited edition peach variant.

Gordon’s White Peach Distilled Gin follows the release of flavoured expressions Gordon’s Pink in 2017 and Gordon’s Sicilian Lemon in February this year. Diageo said the launch of Sicilian Lemon is the first in a number of Gordon’s flavour innovations scheduled for release in 2020.

The new White Peach variant is said to have the “naturally mellow flavour of white peach”. It is available to buy exclusively from UK supermarket Asda.

For more information, click here.

Redbreast 27 Year Old

The latest member of the Redbreast family is a 27-year-old bottling, said to be the brand’s oldest permanent Irish whiskey.

Redbreast 27 Year Old (54.6% ABV) has matured in ruby Port barrels from Portugal’s Douro Valley.

Created by master blender Billy Leighton and blender Dave McCabe, Redbreast 27 Year Old is said to further build the “celebrated foundation of Bourbon and Sherry casks so synonymous with Redbreast”.

For more information, click here.

Inugami Shochu


Brewer and distiller Brewdog put a Scottish twist on Asian spirit shochu last month with the launch of its own shochu brand.

The new Inugami Shochu (23% ABV) is made from malted wheat, barley, rice and molasses, the latter of which is pot-distilled twice.

Botanicals of rhubarb, galangal root and ginger are then individually distilled with the grain spirit, before being blended with the other distillates to create the final product.

For more information, click here.

Jane Walker by Johnnie Walker

To coincide with the debut of its Craftswomen platform, Diageo released a new Jane Walker by Johnnie Walker bottling, following the launch of the 2018 release. The new blend was created by Emma Walker and is made with liquid from Speyside distillery Cardhu.

The new 41.9% ABV whisky is said to have notes of ripe orchard fruit and white peaches, which develop into hints of baked apple and sweet cream, with a lingering dark chocolate finish.

Diageo’s Craftswomen programme aims to celebrate the “talented, bold and pioneering women” behind its spirits production. In addition to the Jane Walker bottling, Diageo also launched the first offering in the new limited edition Blenders’ Select series from Bulleit Bourbon.

For more information click here.

Verano Passionfruit Gin

To tap into the trend for passionfruit, William Grant & Sons’ Verano gin brand added a new flavour to its range in March.

The new gin is infused with “juicy, tropical passionfruit” to provide a “sweet and fruity flavour”.

The passionfruit-flavoured expression is recommended served with either tonic water or lemonade, and garnished with passionfruit.

For more information, click here.

Martini Non Alcoholic Vibrante and Non Alcoholic Floreale

Marking its entry into the non-alcoholic space last month, vermouth brand Martini unveiled two booze-free aperitivos in the UK.

The zero-ABV expressions are made using the same wines as Martini’s vermouths, with the alcohol removed and the leftover liquid infused with “sustainably sourced” botanicals.

Vibrante is made with Italian bergamot to create a “fruity aperitivo that is characteristically Martini”, while Floreale is inspired by the “delicate sweetness of Roman camomile” to provide a “floral tasting experience”.

For more information, click here.

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