Selected high-end bars in London, Leeds, Manchester and Edinburgh are being sent packs for bartenders containing a mixing glass, a Martini coupette, a rocks glass, a fine strainer and a bar spoon.
The packs include Icelandic Bitters which have been produced for the brand by Brooklyn Bitters in the US using botanicals native to Iceland such as thyme, angelica root and mosses.
It is part of a wider campaign by First Drinks to promote the premium craft vodka for serving in a Martini or in a rocks glass with bitters, including social media and in-bar activities. The bartender packs are set to be further rolled out later in the year.
“The bitters are designed to complement and add depth to the Reyka and not take anything away,” said brand manager Jonny Cornthwaite. “Bitters are an exciting area at the moment, and the level of interest in them is phenomenal.”
Other activities this year are set to include bartender workshops in the spring which will look at bitters and involve Jason Rowan, co-founder of Brooklyn Bitters. There are also plans for trade visits to the Reyka distillery which is in a remote village in western Iceland.
Reyka was launched in Iceland in 2005 by William Grant and Sons, creating a crisp and pure vodka through a natural filtration method using lava rock from the volcanic fields that surround the distillery. It was launched in the UK last summer when it was added to the portfolio of UK distributor First Drinks, part of William Grant and Sons.