Industry news round-up: August 26, 2014

Barsmith Farringdon

Our regular round-up of industry news, for August 21 to 26, 2014

Bar group unveils new concept
The Marylebone Leisure Group has unveiled a new cocktail bar concept in London with plans to open more throughout the capital. Due to be officially launched next month, Barsmith (pictured) in St John Street, Farringdon, will be an all-day bar specialising in house-infused spirits and cocktails served with “a flourish of fun and a hint of eccentricity”.
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New London bar for hotel group
A new cocktail bar, The Arts Bar, is to open in London’s Pimlico as part of the new outpost for Brighton’s design-led hotel Artist Residence. Due to launch this September, the hotel will include the bar on the lower ground floor as well as the 48-cover 64 Degrees restaurant – inspired by the restaurant of the same name in Brighton’s Regency Square.
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More Britons accept alcohol-free beer
Over half of British adults say they would feel comfortable ordering alcohol-free beer in front of their friends in a bar, pub or restaurant, according to new research. The survey, run by research group ComRes for beer company AB InBev UK, also found that nearly half of British adults believe alcohol-free beer is more socially acceptable than it was five years ago.
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Nominees for ALMR Late Night Awards
The final list of nominees has been announced for the 2014 Late Night Awards by the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR). Operators across the UK have reached the shortlist ahead of the announcement of the winners at the ALMR’s second annual Dusk ‘til Dawn ceremony on September 14 at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole.
Click here for the full list.

Gentleman Jack links with Novus Leisure
Bacardi Brown-Forman Brands has teamed up with bar operator Novus Leisure to promote its Gentleman Jack whiskey with events at its new venue, Forge. Starting this month, the bar in the City of London is running Wolf of Wednesday nights until mid-September for, led by Cam Dawson, American whiskey brand ambassador for Jack Daniel’s. It includes master classes, tastings and promotions.
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Bartender wins trip to Kentucky
Bartender Maxime Creusot will be going on an all-expenses-paid trip to the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Kentucky after winning the latest Buffalo Trace cocktail competition. Maxime, who works at Steam & Rye in the City of London, took first prize in the contest that challenged them to create a unique drink reflecting one or more of the eight steps required to make Buffalo Trace.
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On-trade relaunch for Magners Berry
A new look and bottle size have been introduced for Magners flavoured cider Orchard Berries in the on-trade. Previously named Magners Berry, it now comes in a 500ml flint bottle format designed to let the red cider colour stand out in the back-bar fridge.
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New look for student pubs from Stonegate
Stonegate Pub Company has opened one of its new-look student bars, The Graduate, in York after a £305,000 investment. It includes a coffee shop-style grab-and-go counter serving tea, coffee, snacks and pastries from 8am plus interactive digital entertainment, craft beers, free super-fast broadband, USB ports and plug sockets at tables, and free access to a wifi-linked printer.
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Bartenders to compete for Kentucky trip
Bartenders are lined up for the UK final of Wild Turkey bourbon’s UK cocktail competition to win a trip to Kentucky. The 12 finalists, who won regional heats, will face judges at Cane & Grain in Manchester on Wednesday (August 27). They are Will Cox, Michael Braun, Michael Cameron, Tim Laferla, Paul Murphy, Andy Moran, Joe Macbeth, Richard Tring, Michael Sharpe, Joshua Cynar Reynolds and Alistair Reynolds.
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New blend for Folkington’s Juices
Folkington’s Juices has extended its range with a new juice blend called the Best of British Summer Berries. It is created from a blend of British-grown raspberries, strawberries and blackcurrants.
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Brewer creates beer with gin botanicals
Meantime Brewing Company has joined forces with Chase Distillery to create a craft beer where hops have been replaced with botanicals from Chase’s Williams Extra Dry GB Gin. The exclusive one-off “Botanical Beer” was unveiled over the past weekend at Meantime’s BrewFest at the brewery in east London.
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TGI Friday’s unveils “fast-track” concept
TGI Friday’s has opened the doors to the first of its new “fast track” bar-restaurants ahead of a planned roll-out. It is in the Upper Concourse of Manchester Piccadilly station, aimed at train and tram passengers as well as locals. It was created with hospitality design consultancy Harrison.
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Bartenders star in Trader Vic’s videos
Trader Vic’s, the French-Polynesian bar and restaurant in London’s Park Lane, has released a series of short films to celebrate its 80th anniversary as well as the 70th birthday of the Mai Tai. They feature Dean MacGregor and Paul McFadyen from Trailer Happiness, Matt Cowling from Made in the Shade, Stuart Vandyken from Mahiki, Vitaly Shvedko from Kanaloa and Trader Vic’s head bartender John Regidor.
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New online marketing tools for sport
Licensees can tap into a new online platform developed by Carlsberg UK for promoting live sport broadcasts at their bars and pubs. Members of Carlsberg UK’s Premier Sports Club support package can now create customisable digital marketing materials for social media and their websites to drive footfall to their venue.
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Heineken UK links with Bristol stadium
Heineken UK has been appointed as the official beer supplier of Bristol’s Ashton Gate Stadium in an agreement with Bristol Sport. The new contract will see the stadium supplied with a wide range of draught and packaged ale, lager and ciders including John Smith’s, Foster’s, Heineken, Kronenbourg and Bulmers over the next two years.

Belhaven adds MatchPint at bars
Brewer and pub company Belhaven has adopted MatchPint, the app that locates the nearest bars or pubs showing sport live on Sky Sports or BT Sport, for sites in Aberdeen, Glasgow, Edinburgh and Stirling. It is supported by promotions in each of the cities giving people the chance to win prizes throughout September and October if they use the app to check in to Belhaven outlets.

High-tech advances for Orderella
Orderella, the app which allows people to order and pay for food and drinks using their smartphone, has teamed up with leading proximity technology and mobile insight provider Tamoco to enhance its availability through technologies such as NFC, iBeacon, QR and wifi. It will give customers the ability to quickly download the app with a tap of their NFC phone and to receive special offers and promotions through iBeacon’s Bluetooth technology.

Mystery shoppers trained in dispense
Star Pubs & Bars is making cider and beer quality the focus of a retail standards audits, putting 80 independent mystery shoppers on its Pint Perfection training course – the same dispense course offered to lessees. Their feedback will be given a greater weighting in mystery visit assessments. The free-of-charge Pint Perfection training is available to Star Pubs & Bars lessees and their staff, run in their own pubs using their own equipment. The company’s goal is for at least 40% of the Star Pubs & Bars estate to have received the training by the end of 2014.

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