Guinness launches alcohol-free variant

Guinness has become the latest major beer brand to launch an alcohol-free variant in a bid to capitalise upon growing consumer demand for the category.

Templeton Rye ramps up focus on innovation

Templeton Rye has released a limited-edition Caribbean Rum Cask Finish expression into the domestic and export markets.

Jameson launches Grow Your Own Cocktail challenge

Bartenders can win cash prizes by entering the Grow Your Own Cocktail web challenge launched by Irish whiskey brand Jameson.

Naomi Osaka invests in sake producer

Tennis superstar Naomi Osaka has been appointed as creative director for SOTO after investing in the premium sake brand.

Diageo to purchase Aviation Gin in $610m deal

Diageo will purchase Aviation Gin and several sister brands in a deal worth up to $610 million.

Global Bartending Talent Agency launches with 16 clients

A former Diageo marketing executive has launched the world’s first dedicated talent agency for influential bartenders.

Beefeater celebrates The Spirit of London in global ad campaign

Gin brand Beefeater has launched a global advertising campaign designed to celebrate the spirit of London.

Finsbury gin redesigned and Wild Strawberry variant launched

Borco has invested in a redesign for its Finsbury gin range and launched a Wild Strawberry variant to attract new consumers.

Codorníu appoints new chief executive

Spanish wine producer Codorníu has announced that Sergio Fuster will take over as chief executive in September.

Gin 1689 targets Latin America

Dutch producer Gin 1689 has appointed specialist firm GinBuilders to distribute the brand in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Martin Miller's launches seasonal gin called Summerful

Martin Miller’s has launched a seasonal gin called Summerful to celebrate the brand’s 20th anniversary.

Louis Roederer crowned World’s Most Admired Champagne Brand 2020

Drinks International has named Louis Roederer as the World’s Most Admired Champagne Brand in 2020, a magazine which ranks champagne brands from 1-30 based on the votes of the world's top wine experts.

Beer: Picture this

It’s all about the branding for craft beers trying to get noticed in a crowded marketplace. Shay Waterworth gets under the skin of funky designs

Vodka: A clear winner?

Is it possible to apply the craft approach to vodka? Philip Duff could have had the recipe for success

Champagne: Pick of the sparklers

With the term ‘sparkling’ gaining credence in wines from England, Canada and Spain, champagne can’t afford to rest on its laurels. Jamie Goode reports

New shoots

Finally getting its own craft segment, vodka is taking cues from wine and championing the terroir of its base as a flavour provider. Shay Waterworth grows the theory.

Brands Report: Pisco

There’s an exciting new entrant in this sector, reports Shay Waterworth

Brands Report: Irish Whiskey

The growing Irish Whiskey category gets its first page to itself this year. Hamish Smith explains why

Brands Report: American Whiskey

Diageo’s Bulleit holds both top spots for the third year running. Shay Waterworth reports

Levels of consumer confusion 'astonishing', says wine industry expert

There is an astonishing level of consumer confusion in an increasingly proliferated wine industry, according to wine consultant Mike Paul.

Three Amigos

Some new faces have appeared on the Jalisco horizon but is Tequila Town big enough for all of them? Hamish Smith takes a wander over yonder

G'Vine launches brand ambassador competition

G’Vine gin’s Connoisseur Programme 2013 includes the chance to become the brand's ambassador.

Profile: Mikaël Silvestre

World Cup finalist, UEFA Champions League, FA and League Cup winner… and now rum brand owner. Christian Davis tackles French international footballer Mikaël Silvestre

Blossom Hill gets largest ever advertising spend

Blossom Hill, one of the UK’s most popular wine brands, is receiving its largest ever advertising support, including £2.2m on media alone.

Jacob’s Creek in major UK chat show sponsorship

Jacob’s Creek, the leading Australian wine brand, is to sponsor the UK’s leading chat show.

Treasury appoints Grant to head up Beringer

Treasury Wine Estates has appointed John Grant as managing director of its Beringer Brand Business Unit.

Heineken reels in Strongbow for US expansion

Heineken has announced it will take the US distribution of its global-leading cider brand, Strongbow, in-house from next year.

Armagnac

Armagnac is arguably the closest spirit to wine in terms of provenance, raw materials and the outlook of the growers, producers and brand owners. Christian Davis reports

Gin

Gin is trading on the complexities of its flavour profile to cash in on the cocktail boom. Patience Gould finds a booming super-premium sector

Accolade Wines revamps Echo Falls

Accolade Wines has unveiled a new look for its Echo Falls Californian wine brand in key European markets, including the UK, Netherlands and Spain.

Inver House reports strong results, releases new Balblair vintages

Inver House Distillers, the Scotland-based spirits arm of International Beverage Holdings has reported a 28% increase in turnover for the year ending December 2011.

Diageo launches a Chinese white spirit to the UK market

Diageo, has launched Chinese white spirit brand, Shui Jing Fang, onto the UK domestic market.

Żubrówka Biała joins The Millionaires’ Club

Żubrówka Biała has gained inclusion into The Millionaires’ Club 2012 after becoming CEDC’s second biggest brand and the world's 83rd largest selling spirit in 2011.

Diageo buys Brazilian cachaça brand Ypióca

Diageo, the world's leading premium drinks business, has announced that it has reached agreement with Ypióca Agroindustrial Limitada to buy cachaça brand, Ypióca, and certain production assets.

Concha y Toro commits to Fetzer

Concha y Toro, the largest wine producer in Latin America, is committed to developing and improving the Californian wine producer, Fetzer, which it bought from Brown Forman in March 2011.

The Philippines' Emperador leads the brandy world

The Philippines-based Emperador brand is the world’s number one selling brandy after more than doubling its volume sales during 2011.

CEDC takes Barefoot to Poland

Central European Distribution Corporation (CEDC) has extended its links with Gallo Vineyards to include the distribution of Barefoot wines in Poland.

Cooley’s and Jameson ready for St Patrick’s Day

Beam Inc., the new owners of Cooley’s the Irish whiskey brand, says it has signaled its intent to build the Kilbeggan brand in the US by importing the largest case shipment ever of the blended whiskey for the St Patrick’s Day (March 17) celebrations this weekend.

Ballantine's whisky goes for golf

Chivas Brothers is to launch a limited edition golf pack for its Ballantine’s 17 and 21 year old blended whiskies.

Danny DeVito’s Limoncello poised for world markets

Danny DeVito’s Limoncello is about to be rolled out to international markets, following its US launch in 2011.

Glenfiddich launches first ever vatted vintage reserve

William Grant has released Glenfiddich’s first-ever vatted ‘vintage reserve’, the 1974 Glenfiddich Vintage Reserve which the company claims was selected by a global panel of 16 experts.

Angostura crowns 2012 cocktail champ

Angostura has crowned US bartender David Delaney Jr as the winner of the 2012 Angostura Global Cocktail Challenge.

Johnnie Walker takes 1st place in Brands by Value list

Johnnie Walker has taken first place in Brands by Value, a list of the world’s 50 most valuable drinks brands.

Pernod CEO rues Havana Club stagnation

Pernod Ricard’s CEO Piere Pringuet has spoken out about Havana Club’s flat half-year sales growth, branding its performance “disappointing”.

Perthshire Raspberry Edinburgh Gin launches in UK

The Spencerfield Spirit Company has launched a Perthshire Raspberry edition of its Edinburgh Gin brand to the UK.

Pernod launches special edition Martell cognac

Pernod Ricard has launched a new expression of its Martell cognac to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Martell Cordon Bleu. Cordon Bleu Centenary limited edition has launched in Asia duty free.

Beefeater 24 is now in 50 markets

Pernod Ricard’s super premium gin, Beefeater 24, is now available in 50 markets worldwide.

Altia buys Xanté

Altia Plc is buying the Xanté Company and the Xanté spirits brand from the Swedish Tilander family.

Ethiopia: Diageo completes brewery acquisition

Diageo has completed the acquisition of the Meta Abo Brewery in Ethiopia for US$225 million.

Codorníu makes new appointments

UK: Grupo Codorníu has made four appointments. Carolyn d’Aguilar and Susannah Bearne move internally to roles in the marketing department while Jake Crimmin and Tom Barton join the UK sales team.