Exclusive news and research on the wine, spirits and beer business

News Briefs for August 30, 2017

August 30, 2017

•Stoli Group USA’s Kentucky Owl is entering the rye category. Kentucky Owl’s first batch of 11-year-old Straight Rye Whiskey will roll out to 25 states next month. The new offering, which is at 55.3% abv and will retail at $130 a 750-ml., will be highly allocated. In recent days, Kentucky Owl also announced the seventh batch of its flagship Bourbon, which retails at $200 and will be launching outside of Kentucky for the first time in September.

•Japan’s Nikka Whisky Distilling Co. is launching a Nikka Coffey Gin and Nikka Coffey Vodka this September in the U.S. via its San Francisco-based importer, Anchor Distilling Co. The gin (47% abv, $50 a 750-ml.) is made from a blend of corn and barley and classical botanicals such as juniper and angelica, with the addition of such Japanese citrus as yuzu, kabosu and amanatsu. The vodka (40% abv, $45), is also distilled from corn and barley with minimal filtration using white birch charcoal. They’re both produced in vintage Coffey continuous column stills at Nikka’s Miyagikyo distillery in Sendai, Japan, where Nikka’s Coffey Grain (45% abv, $70) and Coffey Malt whiskies (45% abv, $75) are made.

•Beam Suntory’s Effen vodka has partnered with the Chicago Cubs to debut a new limited edition bottle. Currently available throughout the greater Chicago area, the Effen Cubs bottle ($21.99) features the brand’s 80-proof Original vodka and a custom co-branded bottle sleeve. The bottle builds on Effen’s existing partnership with the Cubs, with the brand also offered on draft at bar carts throughout Chicago’s Wrigley Field. Effen vodka was up 63% to 167,000 nine-liter cases in the U.S. last year, according to Impact Databank.

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