First cocktail competition launched for Talisker whisky

Talisker Made by the Sea with bottle

A cocktail competition for bartenders has been launched for the first time for premium scotch whisky Talisker as part of a new integrated campaign.

Diageo Reserve is to run activities aimed at consumers and the trade under the banner of “Made by the Sea”, inspired by the remote and rugged Isle of Skye where the spirit is produced and celebrating the whisky’s sea-salt flavour and smooth, smoky finish.

To help educate bartenders about the spirit of Talisker and tell its story, the brand team are inviting them to join “The Race to Skye” in Talisker’s first cocktail competition, spanning six UK cities and culminating in a finale to be held on Skye later this year.

Bartenders in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Manchester, Bournemouth, Bristol and London are challenged to create a cocktail that evokes the spirit of “Made by the Sea”. To enter, they need to email a picture of the serve, ingredients and method to a Diageo Reserve GB brand ambassador.

Ten entries from each city will be selected, and the bartenders will be invited to compete in a regional heat. Six regional winners will then go on to the final challenge, which will be held on Skye.

The champion will be awarded the title of Talisker ambassador and will support in telling the brand’s story and communicating the “Made by the Sea” campaign. The winning bartender will also be part of enhanced PR activity to help raise their profile in the drinks industry.

The brand’s new campaign includes content featuring seasoned adventurer Sam Branson, who joined Talisker brand ambassador Ervin Trykowski for a trip to Skye to learn what it takes to be “Made by the Sea”.

An immersive series of materials will document the adventure to encourage consumers to join the journey and discover the Made by the Sea campaign for themselves.

Nick Temperley, head of Diageo Reserve GB, said: “Talisker is a brand built on discovery and the new campaign, Made by the Sea, has been crafted to reflect this and invite the trade and consumers alike to join the journey.

“The integrated, multi-platform approach has enabled us to ensure we’re reaching as many people as possible to encourage both consumers and bartenders to experiment with what is a truly special liquid and support the growth of the broader scotch whisky category.”

At least 25ml of a Talisker variant must be included in the cocktail, with a link to “”Made by the Sea”. Otherwise, the bartenders are free to use any techniques, equipment and vessels.

The trip to Skye will include travel, accommodation and costs while away. Diageo will supply the dates of the trip – the winners must be available to travel on those days. There is no cash alternative.

The winner’s ambassador role will involve taking part in three events throughout the year and they will be paid for their time.

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