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Jägermeister creates high-end liqueur

Herbal liqueur Jägermeister has unveiled a limited edition expression matured for more than 25 years in an oak barrel.

Jägermeister 9556
Jägermeister’s 9556 comes in a clear glass bottle with a cap featuring an NFT code

The new expression, called 9556 Nights of Exploration, is limited to 2,500 bottles globally.

Priced at €560 (US$599), the new expression was based on a one-time experiment by Dr Günther Findel (1920-2002), the late son-in-law of Jägermeister creator Curt Mast. Findel wanted to test how the base material of Jägermeister would develop over a longer period of maturation.

It comes from a single barrel that has matured in Jägermeister’s barrel storage area in Wolfenbüttel, Germany.

The resulting liquid carries an aroma of caramel and vanilla with spicy herbal flavours, sweet fruit notes (plum and cherry) and aromatic woody notes. The expression is also not as herbaceous as the flagship liqueur, but with more Sherry and wine notes, the brand highlighted.

The expression sits at 40% ABV, higher than the core Jägermeister, which has an ABV of 35%.

Berndt Finke, vice-president of products and quality at Jägermeister, said the very limited product “has never existed before” and should not be served ice-cold like the core Jägermeister product.

The liquid is best served in a tumbler at room temperature, but it can also be enjoyed over ice.

The creation of the liquid is based on the original recipe, which combines 56 botanicals but, instead of a one-year maturation, 9556 is matured for nearly 26 years.

The name, 9556, was inspired by the number of nights it took to get to the final product.

Those who purchase the liqueur will also receive a virtual version of an oil painting as an NFT via a code in the cap of the bottle.

The brand is hoping that the bottle will be purchased for consumption and shared.

Sven Schindler, head of global brand and digital marketing at Mast-Jägermeister, explained: “We would like consumers to crack open the bottle and enjoy the product. They shouldn’t put it on the shelf, so the bottle collects dust. We want them to share the taste experience.”

Once the clear glass bottle is empty, the story behind the liquid will be revealed, which is printed on the inside of the label.

Each 700ml bottle comes in a shock-resistant wooden box, with a QR code that can be scanned for more information.

‘Halo effect’

Schindler said the brand is aiming to “bridge [the gap] between physical experiences and digital experiences”.

“Obviously, we are mostly driven by personal physical experiences, but we are also trying to step into new territories,” Schindler added, explaining the brand’s foray into the NFT market.

The idea behind the product is to create a “halo effect” and share the brand’s heritage, which is not known by many consumers, he explained.

The brand has teamed up with Berlin-based artist Mago Dovjenko, who designed the NFT artwork and will be part of a global online campaign.

Dovjenko took inspiration from 9556’s flavours for the oil painting, as well as his early years of living in Berlin.

The new expression is available in 15 countries globally from 11 November, including Germany, the UK and China. In travel retail, there will be 1,000 bottles available.

Jägermeister has released a range of line extensions in recent years, including super-premium Manifest in 2017, coffee-infused Cold Brew and spicy expression Sharf in 2019.

Jägermeister became the eighth-largest premium spirits brand in global travel retail after recording double-digit growth in the channel.

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