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What image do you have of whisky drinkers? Older gents with cigars perhaps or Scottish lairds shaking the snow off kilts and furry sporrans. Generally, with an eye on export markets, the traditional has been the thrust of whisky marketing – all stags, mountains and sporrans. I am sure the chaps behind Whisky School Blog (not forgetting The Scotch Blog either) will have something to say on the matter but truth is the lack of innovation by the whisky industry over the years has not encouraged the younger generation to take to this most famous of Scottish products.

Trade newspaper Off Licence News this week reports that efforts are evident to broaden the drinks appeal to the younger crowd. They highlight four new brands, not afraid of a more modern marketing approach :

William Grant Monkey Shoulder (£18.99)
“A great whiskey for younger drinkers with more experience of premium vodkas. It’s designed to make a comfortable blend and is recommended layered on top of Coke or with ice”

Compass Box Hedonism (£44.29)
“Complex, rewarding and well worth every penny. Hedonism captures the soft, rich house style with milk, toffee and coconut flavours. It’s an unashamedly sexy drink, and would be a great purchase for a drinker of premium spirits looking for something special”

Ian Macleod Distilleries Smokehead (£19.99)
“Has picked up on the Islay tradition of smoky, peaty whiskies and it makes no apologies for being a full flavoured hit of tobacco, iodine and smoke. Great for younger drinkers with a yen for something really different”

Jon, Mark and Robbo’s The Fruity One (£18.95)
“This deceptively smooth whisky will entirely change the opinion of anyone who thinks they know Scotch. It’s made entirely from grains and the absence of punchy malts makes it something of a revelation…. Incredibly versatile drink that can be made into various concoctions or drunk straight”

1 Comment »

  1. I couldn’t agree with you more, Andrew.
    Lack of innovation is a key factor in whisky not being more broadly consumed.
    The brands you name are sterling examples of trying something different, with Compass Box being the most innovative; while William Grant (Makers of Glenfiddich & Balvenie) doing a fantastic job of marketing with Monkey Shoulder.
    Monkey Shoulder was MADE to be mixed, and this is evident in some of the more tony bars in London.

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