Aquavit given new look to compete with whisky and cognac

Opland aquavit 2018

One of Norway’s most popular aquavits has been given a makeover to prepare the brand to compete with single malt whisky and cognac in overseas markets including the UK.

Leading producer Arcus has enlisted British design agency Stranger & Stranger to redesign the Opland range to give them a more modern appearance while retaining many of the brand’s recognisable features.

The line-up is led by Gammel Opland, which is distributed in the UK by Amathus. Based on an historic recipe, the aquavit is matured in ex-sherry casks to tone down the signature caraway seed and bring through other spices. It is bottled at 41.5% ABV.

Arcus CEO Kenneth Hamnes said: “The ambition of the re-launch is to establish Opland aquavit abroad as a premium brand and compete directly with exclusive single malts or cognac.

“The long maturing process gives Opland a complex composition. Many people connect aquavit and Opland with Christmas, but Opland aquavit is the perfect alternative to cognac or whisky any time of the year.”

The traditional Scandinavian spirit, made with caraway or dill, has been growing in popularity in other countries, especially Germany and the USA. Normally served neat at room temperature, it is often paired with food and is increasingly being used in cocktails.

opland aquavit old and new

Previous Curious Brewery embarks on series of limited editions
Next Hull bar launches gin from new in-house distillery