Fara Leff, Paul Rivera, David Creech, Andrew and Nate Forbes have joined forces to create Beekeeper Coffee – a new ready-to-drink coffee brand bringing ‘a new voice to the industry for the next generation of consumers’.
Beekeeper (pictured above) will offer cold brew lattes available in three flavors – Vanilla, Mocha and Caramel – and for the more avid coffee consumer, a Double Black cold brew with a drop of honey.
Beekeeper’s founders have been connected for more than a decade with a range of brand building experience. Leff is the COO of Klutch Sports Group; Rivera is the co-creator of “The Shop” and the CMO of Springhill Co.; Creech is the co-founder of Adopt and spent nearly 20 years leading design at Nike and Jordan Brand working with some of the highest profile athletes and products in the world; and Andrew and Nate Forbes lead the Forbes company and were former owners of the Cleveland Cavaliers.
“The group has touched major projects together in the past and present – on things like Nike, Beats By Dre, Lobos 1707, Klutch Sports Group and the Cleveland Cavaliers – but Beekeeper Coffee represents the next level of their relationship building something new together,” says the group.
“We took a long look at the current marketplace and saw an opportunity to leverage our expertise and our network to bring a new voice to coffee The industry is overwhelming and intimidating, and the next generation of coffee consumers is craving something simple, fresh and aligned with their taste.”
A Happy Thursday for Gen Z
Molson Coors has announced plans for the upcoming March 2024 launch of Happy Thursday: a line of spiked refreshers targeted at the 21-26 year old consumer group.
The spiked refresher is 4.4% ABV and uncarbonated: and will come come in Strawberry, Pineapple Starfruit, Black Cherry and Mango Passionfruit flavors.
Jamie Wideman, Vice President of Innovation at Molson Coors: said: “The Molson Coors innovation strategy is all about focusing on fewer, bigger, and bolder bets that push boundaries and put us on the forefront of upcoming trends.
"One of those big bold bets is Happy Thursday, Molson Coors's newest line of non-carbonated spiked refreshers co-created with 21+ Gen Z consumers.
"We’ve been seeing and hearing directly from Gen Z that they don't want carbonation.
"So, together we've taken everything the newest legal drinking age consumers love - smooth, flavorful refreshers - and made them spiked, paving the way for a whole new category of alcoholic beverage."
The Hidden Sea
The Hidden Sea’s newly launched Spritz Rosé and Spritz Pinot Grigio cans are available to the UK convenience sector now.
The RTDs will join its wider range of vegan wines: including a Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Rosé, Shiraz and Red Blend.
To date, the eco-conscious South Australian wine brand has removed over 22 million single use plastic water bottles from the ocean in partnership with ReSea (the wine company removes plastic from the ocean for every bottle sold via this partnership).
“The two latest SKUs will play a pivotal role in helping The Hidden Sea reach its audacious 1 billion plastic bottle goal by 2030, as, for every can sold, it will remove and recycle the equivalent of four plastic bottles from the ocean,” says the brand.
Available in the UK via distributor Kingsland Drinks, the 5% ABV 250ml cans offer a ‘mid-strength, refreshing and premium spritz option in the canned wine market’.
Nemiroff has unveiled its latest launch in the vodka category: LEX by Nemiroff.
Making its debut in Cannes at the TFWA exhibition earlier this month, the ultra-premium vodka is ‘a testament to innovation, craftsmanship and a commitment to excellence,’ said the Ukrainian company.
The production process for LEX by Nemiroff involves 13 filtration stages, including silver, platinum, shungite, and amber filtrations.
The amber filtration process is particularly noteworthy, imparting enhanced smoothness, improved clarity, flavor enhancement, and a captivating golden or amber hue to the vodka, says Nemiroff.
“With nearly three years of development and over 100 tastings, LEX by Nemiroff has become an internal benchmark of excellence. The vodka's terroir, featuring wheat from the Podilia region and water from local artesian springs, enhances its distinct flavor profile. Honey from local apiaries and linden flowers further contribute to the vodka's exceptional character,” says the brand.
The bottle is crafted from perfume glass produced in France by Saverglass; additional elements of the bottle and packaging are produced in Ukraine, reflecting Nemiroff's support for domestic producers and craftsmanship.
LEX is recommended to be served on the rocks.
Superbird – a new tequila from Casa Komos Brands Group – has launched in the US.
Superbird Premium Tequila ($29.99-32.99) is now available in three expressions: Blanco, Reposado and Fuego.
“Blanco is perfect for any cocktail, like a Paloma, Margarita, or Tequila Sunrise. Smooth and bright, it is the tequila of choice for a balanced mixed drink," says the brand.
"Reposado, with its deep, rich and earthy flavor, is the ideal tequila for sipping and savoring neat or on the rocks.
“Fuego, a full-flavored and unrivaled jalapeño-infused spicy tequila, is made for a neat shot or adding delicious heat to any tequila cocktail. It meticulously blends an in-house created jalapeño extract adding just the right amount of heat, while still leaving the imbiber wanting more.”
Superbird can be found at select retailers in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Washington, D.C. Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, Nevada, New York metropolitan area and upstate, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin, with additional markets launching later this year. Suggested retail price is $29.99 (Superbird Blanco and Superbird Reposado - 40% ABV) and $32.99 (Superbird Fuego - 40% ABV).
Atlas Mountains tonic
Wildleaf, a quinine-free tonic using a unique blend of botanicals native to the Atlas Mountains, has launched in the UK.
The drink includes the namesake Wildleaf (also known as wormwood), which provides ‘a gentler and less better taste, resulting in less sugar being needed to balance the flavors’.
“Masterfully balancing complexity with a delicate touch, the Wildleaf collection harmonises effortlessly with a diverse spectrum of spirits, providing the ultimate drinking experience,” says the brand.
“Furthermore, much like quinine, Wormwood has long been known to have healing benefits, and each of Wildleaf’s four expressions contains a maximum of 42 calories.”
The Wildleaf range comprises four mixers, including two refreshing tonic waters, a light and bright club soda and a fun and fiery ginger ale.
“The flagship of the range is the Atlas Tonic, a botanically balanced drink derived from a combination of Wormwood and Quassia Amara, another botanical native to the North African landscape. With a generous hit of citrus flavor and a clean, smooth finish, it is the perfect partner for craft Gins and premium Vodkas.
“Deliciously dry and lighter bodied, Lumière is Wildleaf’s light tonic, containing just 24 calories per bottle. A subtle mix of botanicals and fruit flavors combined with coriander seed, juniper and less than 3% sugar, Lumière is perfect when paired with premium botanical spirits, a non-alcoholic alternative, or simply sipped solo for a refreshing low-calorie drink.
“Wildleaf’s Club Soda is a beautiful botanical take on the classic but with the bonus of gently blended Wormwood and crystal-clear water, resulting in premium soda water with a subtle, herbaceous finish. Sip neat or pair with a complex spirit to showcase its character without overshadowing it.
"Ginger Tail is the low sugar and more bitter alternative to ginger ale. Fun and fiery, it is made with Wildleaf’s signature all natural botanical bitters and a zingy ginger extract, with a vibrant kick of bird’s eye chilli on the finish. Enjoy by itself as a refreshing aperitif or alongside a rich dark spirit for the ultimate indulgence.”
The London Essence Co expands crafted sodas range
Britvic’s premium mixer brand, The London Essence Co., has expanded its Crafted Sodas range with the launch of two new flavors, Aromatic Orange & Fig and Raspberry & Rose Crafted Sodas.
The two new SKUs are available to purchase in 500ml bottles from major retailers, with a RRP of £2.00.
“The launch supports London Essence’s ambition to build a premium mixer brand for a much broader range of elevated mixed and solus drinks,” says Britvic.
“The Aromatic Orange & Fig Crafted Soda is a sparkling mixer with a vibrant citrus-forward profile that is freshly aromatic on the nose, combining sweet, zesty orange with the citrus intensity of blood orange and layered with aromatic bergamot for a subtle herbal undertone. The addition of a fig distillate delivers a smooth and honeyed finish that perfectly complements the fresh orange citrus for a refreshing sip that can be served as a solus drink, or paired with your favorite premium spirit.
“The Raspberry & Rose Crafted Soda consists of vibrant raspberry infused with a hint of sharp blackberry, and is perfectly balanced with lavender and a signature rose distillate, adding an elegant top-note and a fragrant, floral finish. With a well-rounded taste profile, the Raspberry & Rose Crafted Soda can be served on its own for a non-alcoholic alternative, or paired with your favorite premium gin, for a sophisticated twist on the classic Bramble cocktail.”
As with the full range of London Essence’s products, both SKUs are sweetened naturally with fructose and are low in calories, with less than 20 calories per 100ml.
Heartbeat to ‘redefine wine category’ with Hot Rose with a spicy kick
New market entrant Heartbeat is launching in the US with Hot Rosé, which features a spicy kick.
Heartbeat ferments fresh peppers to create a proprietary pepper-based wine, which is then blended back into the rosé for an elevated flavor profile. Each 750mL bottle is 11.7% ABV, 103 calories, and contains no sugar or fake flavors.
Heartbeat Hot Rosé is available for purchase direct-to-consumer on moreheartbeat.com for $21.99, with Los Angeles-based retail stores and restaurants to follow.
With a love for spicy cocktails, CEO and Founder Kristen Knapp found a white space in the wine industry and partnered with woman winemaker Gianna Fugazi: who elevated the concept by creating the proprietary pepper-wine blend in Heartbeat Hot Rosé. With an eye for innovation, Fugazi is a former Flowers winemaker, and is behind two Maker Wine collaborations, including its best-selling white wine.
“While other alcohol categories embrace change, wine embraces tradition. We wanted to introduce true product innovation to a category that historically relies on branding as its main differentiator,” said Knapp.
“Heartbeat Hot Rosé opens up the category to more people, like cocktail drinkers looking for a low-sugar option, seltzer drinkers looking for more freshness and flavor, and of course rosé drinkers who never get anything new. We’re not trying to disrupt wine — we want to redefine it, challenging the what, how, and who. We’re building something that speaks more broadly, and we’re really excited to introduce it to the world.”
Heartbeat aims to attract the younger and more diverse demographic that the industry has been statistically losing.
“TikTok has over 10 million impressions of users dropping jalapeños into their rosé glasses, proving a strong thirst for innovation and obsession with spice within the Gen Z and Millennial demographics,” continues Knapp. “From shots of Fireball to spicy margaritas, there is a rising popularity of spice-infused alcohol, and Heartbeat is bringing the heat to the rosé wine category.”