Spirits embark on flavour drive


SPIRITS brands Southern Comfort and Jim Beam have extended their flavoured portfolios with the launch of new variants.

A year after the launch of black cherry-infused Red Stag by Jim Beam, Maxxium UK, which distributes the Beam-owned bourbon, has introduced Jim Beam Honey, while Bacardi Brown-Forman Brands has launched Southern Comfort Bold Black Cherry.
The cherry-infused spirit, which follows the introduction of Southern Comfort Lime last year, is said to have a “familiar yet unexpected” flavour. Designed to appeal to 18 to 24 year olds, the new Southern Comfort flavour is reckoned to be best served with cola to enhance the spirit’s “rich complex flavours”.
Its launch will be backed by point of sale kits, as well as advertising and digital activity. The brand will also be back on TV screens this summer with its ‘here’s to the unexpected’ ad.
Brand manager Natasha Pattison said Southern Comfort Bold Black Cherry aims to tap into what she said is the growing popularity of flavoured spirits around the globe.
“The launch of Southern Comfort Bold Black Cherry is set to continue the brand’s flavour innovation that kicked off last year with Southern Comfort Lime, which is already recruiting new consumers to the brand,” she said.
“The bold new flavour is perfect for the 18 to 24 [year old] audience, who enjoy drinking sweeter flavour profiles.
“Our own consumer research has already revealed high interest in the new variant, which we are confident will convert to purchase.
“We’d advise bartenders and publicans to stock up now to make the most of the sales and profit opportunities Southern Comfort Bold Black Cherry is set to bring.”
Meanwhile, Maxxium UK reckons new Jim Beam Honey will appeal to both new and existing bourbon drinkers.
The variant is made with four year old Jim Beam, which is slowly infused with natural honey – a process that’s said to produce a “sophisticated, deep and rich” flavour profile and a sweet honey finish. The 35% ABV flavoured bourbon is designed to be drunk chilled on its own or as part of a long mixed drink.
Eileen Livingston, Maxxium UK’s marketing controller for imported whiskeys, said the launch is part of a drive to grow the bourbon category through innovation.
“Honey is one of the latest flavours in the flavoured spirits sector and Jim Beam is leading this trend in bourbon, broadening its appeal and recruiting new consumers into the brand and category,” she said.