Industry news round-up: August 12, 2013

hornsbyOur weekly round-up of industry news, for August 5 to 12, 2013

US-style cider to be launched in UK bars
Tennent Caledonian is to bring an American-style cider to the UK with the launch of Hornsby’s exclusively in the on-trade. The cider, which is a leading brand in the US, has a softer carbonation and is designed to be enjoyed chilled and straight from its 330ml long-neck bottle. It will be launched with two flavours: Crisp Apple, with an ABV of 4.5%, and Strawberry & Lime, with an ABV of 4%. Distribution will be focused on modern and American-themed bars throughout the UK. Click here for more on

New Baileys variant brings luxury
Diageo is to launch a new premium sub-brand of cream liqueur Baileys in September called Baileys Chocolat Luxe, using real Belgian chocolate blended with Irish whiskey. Distributed across all channels in the UK, it will be supported by a £5.5million marketing campaign including TV advertising and sampling. Click here for more on

Edinburgh group expands with new bar
The Shilling Group has expanded its estate to 11 with a new bar in Edinburgh. The Cross & Corner (pictured), in the former McLachlan’s in the Canonmills area, has been refurbished at a cost of £100,000. Designed by GLM, the interior takes style cues from the Victorian era in a contemporary context. Serves include variations on a Bloody Mary and gin and tonic. Click here for more on

Bristol bar gains later licence despite opposition
A bar and restaurant operator in Bristol has won permission for later opening hours despite opposition from police and restrictions on licensing. Za Za Bazaar (pictured) has been allowed an extension of the terminal hour for licensable activities on Fridays and Saturdays from 12.30 to 1.30am, with a closing time of 2am. Fraser Brown Solicitors succeeded in gaining the extended hours, subject to agreed conditions. Click here for more on

Co-founder quits Inventive Leisure
Inventive Leisure, which operates the Revolution bar chain, has announced that Neil Macleod, who co-founded the business 21 years ago, has stepped down as director “to pursue other interests”. Chief executive Mark McQuater said: “Neil has made a strong contribution to Inventive over the years and the company wishes him every success for the future.”

MeatLiquor to open site in Brighton
The team behind MeatLiquor restaurant in London are expanding to the south coast with a new site in London Road, Brighton this September. Alongside its renowned meat dishes, it will serve seafood. As with its London sites, cocktails have been created by consultancy Soulshakers. Click here for more on

Norwich bar fined over ‘pouring over’
The former operators of a bar in Norwich have been fined more than £13,000 after being found guilty of wrongly claiming it was serving Jägermeister when it was another product. Norfolk Trading Standards successfully took the “pouring over” case against Deli Delicious, which ran New York New York bar in the city centre.Click here for more on

Fuller’s develops new bar concept
A new bar concept has been developed by London brewer and pub company Fuller’s offering cocktails, craft beers and American whiskeys. It has converted the former Whistle & Flute in Putney, London, into The Swift, with contemporary décor combining retro, modern and industrial. It offers a list of cocktails including four using Fuller’s beers as ingredients. Click here for more on

Sparkling wine promoted for cocktails
Italian sparkling wine brand Frizzenti is promoting sparkling twists on classic cocktails to bars as it grows on-trade distribution. With the wines’ light and fruity qualities, they are suitable for mixing, including a sparkling version of Britons’ favourite cocktail, the Mojito. The serves are supported by a range of point-of-sale materials. Click here for more on

Wholesaler launches ‘Cocktail Library’ for bars
Leading drinks wholesaler Matthew Clark is helping bars, pubs and clubs to capitalise on the growing popularity of cocktails by launching a “Cocktail Library”, providing its customers with the ingredients and tools for adding and expanding a cocktail offering. It comprises a start-up cocktail kit, cocktail lists, supporting point-of-sale material, “cocktail of the month” serves and training videos and manuals.

Training kitemark for Shaker BarSchool
The Shaker BarSchool has become the first bartender training company to receive a new kitemark launched by The Hospitality Guild to help organisations promote their commitment to training and developing staff and to raise professional standards in the hospitality industry. Shaker was recognised for its International Bartender Course. The kitemark was developed with leading organisations in the industry and is managed by hospitalty skills council People 1st.

Abstract new look for Absolut flavours
New designs have been unveiled for Absolut’s range of flavoured vodkas, using abstract imagery rather than images of fruit. The new look starts this month with Pears and Raspberri, followed by the rest later in 2013 and into 2014. Anna Kamjou, glob¬al design director at Absolut said: “The standard thinking says a fruit-flavoured vodka requires fruit imagery. We wanted to break that convention.” Click here for more on

Search for UK’s best sake sommelier
In the first of its kind to be held outside Japan, the Academy of Food & Wine Service has launched a UK-based Sake Sommelier of the Year competition with the London-based Sake Sommelier Association. Sponsored by sake producer Gekkeikan, it is open to all sommeliers including sake sommeliers. After a first-round questionnaire, the semi-final and final will be held in London in November, including blind tastings and food-matching tests. The prize is a fully funded trip to Japan to take the five-day Sake Sommelier Association Advanced Sake Sommelier course. Details at

Business improving for Gruppo Campari
A “positive trend” in the UK is helping to improve sales for global drinks giant Gruppo Campari, owner of Cinzano, Aperol, Wild Turkey and Skyy vodka. While the group’s net profit was down 26.1% in the first six months of 2013 because of one-off restructuring costs, it grew in key markets such as North America and saw improvements or stability in European countries. Chief executive Bob Kunze-Concewitz said that “whilst the group’s overall trading environment should remain volatile due to macroeconomic difficulties in key markets, we expect the business to continue improving gradually over the second half of 2013”.

Whisky maker’s profits dip despite sales rise
Inver House Distillers, the Scottish-based production arm of global drinks business International Beverage Holdings, reported a 13% rise in turnover in 2012. However, underlying operating profit fell 10.6% to £12.6million because of investments, mainly in stock and distilleries, to support long-term global growth. It saw particular growth internationally for its Old Pulteney single-malt whisky. Its portfolio also includes Balblair, anCnoc, Speyburn and Hankey Bannister whiskies and Caorunn gin.

New beers and ciders head for GBBF
Britain’s brewers and cider-makers are preparing to launch new products at the Great British Beer Festival which is being held at Olympia London from August 13 to 17. Westons Cider is introducing Rosie’s Pig, a cloudy medium-dry cider with an ABV of 4.8%, created to complement its popular traditional cider, Old Rosie. Fuller’s is to launch its Vintage Ale 2013, which this year comes in cask rather than the normal bottle format. With an ABV of 8.5%, it has a deep, rich, stone fruit palate overlaid with cinnamon, pineapple and marmalade notes. Visit

Jim Beam to pop up at Edinburgh bar
The Shilling Group has teamed up with drinks company Maxxium UK to run a Jim Beam whiskey pop-up, Taste of Kentucky, at Bar Kohl on August 22 and 23 to tie in with the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. The back area of the bar will be turned into a “Kentucky fun house”, with neon signs and hay bales. Three cocktails will be on offer, a Kentucky Woman, a Delicious Sour and a Mint Julep, plus the Jim Beam perfect serve of whiskey, ginger ale and an orange wedge. The pop-up will open 7pm to midnight.

Restaurants extend Frobishers contract
Yo! Sushi restaurants have extended a two-year contract to stock premium juice brand Frobishers by a further two years because of strong sales. It sells over 4,000 bottles of Frobishers orange, mango and pressed apple juices per week across 64 of its restaurants.

Student numbers rise for WSET
The Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) has reported that worldwide student numbers for the academic year 2012/13 stood at an all-time high of 48,434, up 12% on the previous year. The greatest numerical growth was in mainland China, the UK and the USA. Chief executive Ian Harris said: “Over recent years, the WSET team have put a great deal of effort into developing new qualifications, ensuring that the existing ones are as accurate and fit for purpose as they can possibly be.”

Performance improves at Enterprise pubs
Enterprise Inns has reported an improving trend in performance for its pubs. After like-for-like net income fell by 4.2% in the first six months of its financial year, the decline was only 2.7 per cent in the 18 weeks to August 3 in the second half of the year. Since then, the first five weeks of the final quarter have seen growth in like-for-like net income. “Trading performance continues to improve and, whilst we are unlikely to deliver like-for-like growth for the second half in total, like-for-like growth remains our target for the final quarter,” the company said in an interim management statement.

Nottingham bar celebrates record business
A month of major events in Nottingham and an extended summer heatwave helped the city’s bar and restaurant Rocket@Saltwater have its busiest month on record in July. The venue, which opened over a decade ago as Saltwater, benefited from Nottingham hosting the first Ashes test, National Armed Forces Day and graduation ceremonies. With the attraction of a rooftop terrace, it sold 3,500 pints of beer, 2,500 bottles of beer and 2,068 cocktails in the last week of July while footfall was up 40 per cent on last year to an average of 6,000 people a week.

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