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Pernod Ricard Launches Martell Cognac France VS Single Distillery

Pernod Ricard has launched Martell Cognac France VS Single Distillery in the Nigerian market.

Martell VS Single Distillery is a blend of single-distilled spirits for a richer and more intense expression of the Martell distillation style.

The elegance, complexity and balance of Martell style are the result of a unique savoir-faire: the distillation of clear wines only and the ageing of its eaux-de-vie in fine-grain oak barrels. Each bottle of Martell VS Single Distillery is sourced from Martell’s partner distilleries in the Cognac region.

Founded in 1715, Martell is the oldest of the great Cognac Houses. It is the only cognac house that exclusively distils wines that have been cleared of all sediments, displaying luscious fruit aromas and finesse that are our hallmarks.

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Life Lager Sign Unveil Rapper Phyno as New Brand Ambassador

life beer phyno brand ambassador

Life Continental Lager Beer, a premium beer brand owned by Nigerian Breweries Plc., Nigeria’s biggest brewer, has unveiled rap artiste Phyno as their new brand ambassador.

Speaking at the unveiling ceremony, Mr Maria Franco Maggi, the Marketing Director of NB Plc. said;

“Working with a great act like Flavour and this new collaboration with Phyno – one of Nigeria’s most successful artistes and a proud son of the Igbo community, is further proof of Life Continental Lager beer’s mission of effectively promoting Igbo highlife music, beliefs, traditions and progressive cultural values”.

Phyno, who signed the new deal at the Nigerian Breweries Plc. corporate head office in Lagos on the 31st of May 2018, will feature in Life Continental Beer advertising and marketing campaigns and will also make special appearances at events.

“I am very happy to be part of this great development as Life Continental beer has always been a brand that shows great support for the Igbo culture and values and it is something that I respect this beer brand for,” Phyno said.

“They are the reason I am here today and I am proud to now be their ambassador”.

Life Continental Beer pioneered regional brewing in Nigeria and has maintained leadership in the Southeast region’s booming market for decades.

 

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Snoop Dogg Makes Guinness World Record for World’s Largest Cocktail

SNOOP DOGG-Cocktail | www.drinks.ng

Snoop Dogg was on Sunday awarded a Guinness World record for making the world’s largest “paradise cocktail” along with US celebrity chef Michael Voltaggio and fellow rapper Warren G.

The 46-year-old rapper took part in the world record attempt at BottleRock Napa Valley on Sunday, pouring 180 bottles of Hendrick’s Gin into a juice-filled glass which stood at five-feet tall and three-feet wide. A total of 550 litres of gin was used in making the cocktail.

Mercury News reports that Guinness World Records official was present to judge and hand over a certification of achievement to the rapper.

After gaining popularity for his song “Gin & Juice”  — the second single from his debut album Doggystyle, Snoop has finally made the real gin and juice cocktail.

He shared his record-breaking mixology on Instagram, posting a photo where he proudly holds up his new award.

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Dos & Don’ts of Drinking Champagne

Drinking_Champagne | www.drinks.ng

Nigeria is one the biggest champagne markets, and Nigerians are not slowing down in their consumption of the luxury sparkling wine from France.

However, one question that lingers steadily is if we are consuming champagne in the right way. While many Nigerians look forward to the end of the year when weddings and concerts will mean more champagne to be drunk, there are certain dos and donts experts from the House of Champagne Lanson have offered.

Dos on how to enjoy a glass of bubbly

Store Properly

Storing champagne properly simply means keeping it in cool, dry place. While it is normal for most people to store their champagne in the fridge, it is always best to have a wine cellar. Where there is no wine cellar, experts informed  The Daily Mail that the bottom of the wardrobe and a household cupboard are ideal alternatives.

Serve in the Right Glass

The reason why champagne is served in a fruit rather than other drinking glasses simply boils down to the bubbles. The sparkling bubbles in champagne are more likely to disappear faster when poured in a glass with a wider rim. Serving it in a flute glass will not only retain the bubbles but will also allow the flavours to be more concentrated.

Pair with Dessert

Rather than offering champagne only as a welcome drink at an event, experts advise that it should be paired with a portion of the meal. This is a much lighter, and fresher alternative to sweet dessert wine according to experts.

Don’ts

Drink champagne by itself always

Once in a while, mix your champagne with mint or lemon peel to enhance the flavour. Many people shy away from mixing champagne but experts say that as long as you are experimenting with other types of alcohol, you can also do same with champagne.

Fill a glass at once

Never pour an entire glass of champagne in one go. Experts advise that when pouring your champagne, it is ideal to first pour an inch into the glass and allow the foam to settle. Once the foam settles, you can then fill up the rest of the glass until it’s been filled two-thirds.

Chill champagne for long

Champagne is not pleasant to drink if it’s too cold expert claim. Therefore, it’s best to place your bottle of champagne in an ice bucket for around 30 minutes before serving to guests as opposed to chilling for long hours in the fridge.

Serve for special days

Except it’s a vintage champagne, most champagnes are sold during the time it is ideal for consumption. So it’s best to consume your champagne immediately after purchase, rather than keep it for years before popping.

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Moët & Chandon Announces June Date for Grand Day

Moet-Chandon-Grand-Day | www.drinks.ng

Moët & Chandon has announced that its grand day celebration is set to hold on June 9, 2018, in Lagos.

Formally known as Moet party day, the event is set aside as a day of sparkling celebrations around the globe. Friends and loved ones are hosted to a 24-hour party, as they raise their champagne glasses in a worldwide toast to the memorable moments that bring joy to their lives.

The annual festive party is planned in over 80 countries and is set to bring together over a million people from Hong Kong, Lagos, Geneva and Montreal among glitz and glamour.

“This year, Moët & Chandon is bringing the art of the fête to Nigeria. Moët & Chandon Grand Day will be a unique event in which we share the magic of champagne and celebrate a day dedicated to the joys of life.

“And the translation of the French word ‘fête’ literally means ‘party’,” says Elizabeth Oputa, manager of champagne brands at Moët Hennessy in Nigeria.

Moët & Chandon, founded in 1743, is one of the world’s most valuable champagne brands, offering a range of unique wines for every occasion.

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How Hero Lager Beer Became a Red Capped Igbo ‘Chief’

An Igbo ‘red cap’ chief is a walking insignia of authority, tradition, and culture, same as a group of ‘red cap’ chiefs symbolise an entire institution of leadership, achievement, authority, and power in Igbo tradition.

With the recent knighting of Hero lager by the Obi of Onitsha as “Mmanya ejiri mara Igbo,” the premium beer brand will now be seen in the same light as a red cap chief though out the entire South Eastern region in Nigeria. The knighting is a proof of how much Hero lager has repositioned its front and heightened its authority within the region it has been most successful.

Budweiser has come into the Nigerian market claiming to be the ‘King of Beers’, what Hero has done is to say; “Hey Bud! You might be a King, but in there is another King in the South East.” Interestingly, both beer brands are managed by International Breweries Plc., a proud member of AB InBev, so the temptation for a brand war among these two is negligent.

Launched into the market in August 2012 without much fanfare, Hero immediately resonated with the culture of the Igbos, and backed by the brand’s strategic positioning in terms of value and price, it skyrocketed to the summit of the beer market in the region.

From the retail shops in Onitsha to hotels in Owerri and down to the manufacturing workshops in Aba, Hero beer became a favourite broth among many beer lovers. That acceptance into the nucleus of the region’s neo-culture led to the christening of the beer as ‘Oh Mpa.’ Mpa means father in the Igbo language, a sign that the brand was held in high regards for what it now signified.

It became a regular feature on the menu during festivals and traditional ceremonies, while also inspiring the mentality of being a ‘hero’ among its teeming consumers; it has become a symbol of identity for the Igbo beer lover.

At the peak of its achievement, societal status and recognition, the next move for the brand, like every Igbo individual who has ridden his way to the top, was to seek the knighthood of a red cap chief. As Igwe Nnaemeka Alfred Ugochukwu Achebe, the Obi of Onitsha, His Royal Highness, gave the blessing for the red cap ceremony to commence, the reality of Hero’s achievement as the market leader in that region became flesh.

A relatively unknown brand, first released during the burial of civil war hero late Chukwuemeka Ojukwu, Hero was finally celebrated with dance, music and fanfare. For the brand, the knighthood is an integrated marketing scheme that hopes to reward its customers as well extend the brand’s reach.

“Since we introduced this beer to the Nigerian market, it has clearly found its way into the taste buds of beer drinkers first in South East Nigeria and beyond,” says Obumneke Okoli, Marketing Manager Hero Lager, during the ceremony.

“The people are happy, excited with a burning flare in them all because of this beer.”

More so, the red cap ceremony represents the fruition of the brand’s essence which thrives on the sentiments of the Igbos and the regional marketing of the brand’s handlers.

Arne Rust, Marketing Director, International Breweries Plc., said during the ceremony:

“Through this ceremony, we hope to inspire consumers to be heroes every day and in every way. We have great plans for our consumers in Nigeria, part of which includes strategically launching several beer brands to suit specific geography and cultures. Hero is a well-established brand in the eastern part of the country. International Breweries Plc., genuinely cares about the culture and tradition of the people, and we will consistently seek ways to showcase our culture and positively impact the society.”

That grand red cap title-giving ceremony will be followed by a “Go! Be the Hero” campaign which looks to reward Nigerian men in recognition of their efforts and mission to be heroes. Also, as sponsors of the FIFA World Cup 2018, Hero will send the Super Eagles off to Russia with an unveiling of the world’s biggest football message written with people – “Eagles Be Fearless, Go Be The Hero.”

The campaign shows that Hero lager is truly being ‘heroic’ in its strides and new experiences for consumers. After all, when a man has been made a red cap chief, he has to embark on a new project to prove to his kinsmen that he is truly worthy of his new title. The World Cup campaign will serve Hero lager’s popularity in Nigeria positively and maybe one day, the beer will stake a claim for an Ozo title.

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$1 Million Whisky Sets New World Record

Scotch Whisky | www.drinks.ng

Think you would spend over $1 million on a bottle of whisky? If you won’t then you don’t love the brown distilled spirit well enough.

Over the weekend, two bottles of a rare 60-year-old Scottish Macallan whiskey were shown love when two separate buyers purchased each for a combined sum of $2.11 million.

According to High Snob Society, the whisky bottles were sold off at a Bonhams auction for fine and rare wines and whiskies. Both bottles are 75CL vintage bottles distilled in 1926 and bottled in 1986 after maturation in a sherry hogshead cask. Only 12 of each Macallan was ever produced.

“These bottles are some of the oldest whiskies produced by Macallan in the 20th century,” Daniel Lam On-Tai, head of fine wine and whisky for Bonhams in Hong Kong, told South China Morning Post.

Both bottles were named after Italian artist Valerio Adami and British pop artist Peter Blake respectively. One bottle sold for HK $8.64 million to a bidder, while the other sold for HK $7.96 million to another anonymous buyer over the phone.

 

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Whisky & Aging: Everything You Should Know

Whiskey or Whisky | www.drinks.ng

The maturation period of whiskey, which involves aging the liquor in wooden barrels, is one of the most interesting stages of the whiskey production process.

The process allows the whiskey to interact with the oak barrels to arrive at the desired state in line with the particular distillery. The type of barrel used for maturation is usually determined by the Master Blender who seeks to achieve a particular character and maintain the style of the whiskey that the house is known for.

What is aging?

Aging refers to the process of storing distilled spirits (or wines) in barrels for a specific period of time. The time may take up to 10 years, 20 years or even more. The aim is usually to extract harsh flavours from the raw alcohol while distinct characteristics are added to it from the barrel’s wood.

Why age whiskey in barrels?

For those who are whiskey aficionados, the answer to this is as familiar as their own names. However, for the spirit drinkers who are new to the world of whiskey, the question begs a comprehensive answer.

What to know about barrel aging for whiskey

Oak Barrels are used

This is about the first thing anyone should know about the maturation of whiskeys. Oak barrels are used because of their distinct physical and chemical nature. Because oak is pure wood, it is preferable to other types of woods like rubber or pine.

The oak adds taste and aroma to the spirit, while also extracting undesirable elements from it. It also interacts with the spirit, adding extractive wood elements as well as giving it the desired colour throughout the aging period.

There is a Toasting or Charring

When the barrels have been created, the whiskey is not just poured inside. Traditionally, the barrels are either toasted or charred when they are built, this creates a layer of charcoal that filters out unwanted flavours from the raw spirit. Bourbon casks are usually charred, while sherry casks are toasted.

Colour comes from the barrels

Whiskey would be a clear spirit just like gin and vodka if they were not aged in oak barrels. It is the barrels that give it colour. As the spirit interacts with the barrel, the colour of the wood is extracted and blends itself into it, giving it the amber or golden brown colour. The longer the spirit is aged, the darker the colour. Moonshine is the only clear whiskey because it is unaged.

The Barrel adds flavour too

More than just the colour, the barrel also adds flavour to the spirit too. How does this happen? The barrel actually mellows out any harsh notes found in the raw spirit through absorption. So when you see whiskey notes with ‘oakiness’ or ‘undertones of charred oak,’ then know that it is referring to the flavours gotten from the oak barrels. Depending on the species of oak used in the barrel, different flavours can be gotten.

Quercus Alba, “White Oak” (American Oak), Quercus Petraea, “Sessile Oak” (Europe) and Quercus Robur, “Pedunculate Oak” (Europe) are three most used species of oak.

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Guinness Nigeria Mainstream Spirit Brands Clinch Medals at San Francisco World Spirits Competition

Guinness Nigeria Mainstream Spirits | www.drinks.ng

Guinness Nigeria’s mainstream spirits won significant medals at the recently concluded San Francisco World Spirits Competition (SFWSC).

Gordon’s Moringa Citrus Blend led the way with a gold medal in the Gin category. According to the SFSWC screening panel, a Gold Medal is awarded to products deemed ‘exceptional spirits near the pinnacle of achievement that set the standard for their categories’.

Smirnoff X1 Vodka also performed greatly, clinching silver medals for its Intense Chocolate and Extra smooth variants, while category leaders Orijin Bitters and McDowell’s No.1 Whisky won bronze medals in their respective categories.

Founded in 2000, the San Francisco World Spirits Competition was established as a way to recognize exceptional products in the spirits industry. The 2018 Competition was the biggest in its history, featuring more than 2,200
entries. An SFWSC medal has become a recognized affirmation of high quality and one of the most reliable and universal indications of spirits excellence.

The mainstream spirit brands from Guinness Nigeria Plc. staved off stiff competition from over 2,200
international brands at the SFWSC, which is a highly regarded competition established to recognize exceptional products in the spirits category.

‘We are excited to have been recognized as trailblazers in our craft which is a reflection of our commitment to providing quality brands for our consumers to enjoy and celebrate with, every day and everywhere,’ said Marketing Manager for Guinness Nigeria’s Spirits Portfolio, Aigbeme Okonkwo.

The giant brewer also disclosed that each of the winning spirits is proudly made in Nigeria and further underscores the consistent Global Quality Management Standards deployed by Guinness across its production plants worldwide.

Guinness Nigeria, a subsidiary of Diageo Plc of the United Kingdom was incorporated in 1962 with the construction of a brewery in Ikeja, the heart of Lagos. The brewery was the first Guinness operation outside Ireland and Great Britain. Guinness Nigeria has grown tremendously over the years and cemented its place in the hearts of Nigerian stout drinkers as the favourite bold premium stout.

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Guinness Nigeria Names New CEO

Guinness Nigeria | www.drinks.ng

Diageo-owned Guinness Nigeria Plc has announced that Baker Magunda, currently the Managing Director of Meta Abo Brewery in Ethiopia, as their new CEO.

Magunda will take over from Peter Ndegwa, who will be stepping down at the end of the 2018 Financial Year after three years in office. Ndegwa will be taking up a new role as the Managing Director, Continental Europe and Russia, a member of the Diageo Group, the company also announced.

“Ndegwa has been at Guinness Nigeria for nearly three years and has overseen the recent transformation at the company, including the successful rights issue and implementation of the productivity programme,” according to a statement released by the company.

“Recent third quarter financial performance has shown the improvement that these projects are delivering.

“Baker Magunda will join Guinness Nigeria from Diageo-owned Meta Abo Breweries in Ethiopia. Under Magunda’s tenure, Meta Abo has seen the launch of the Guinness brand in the country and a strong innovation pipeline of brands brought to the market. He has nearly 20 years’ experience in the consumer goods and alcohol industry. He has worked across in Uganda and Kenya, as well as Ethiopia and the Sudan.”

Speaking on the development, the Chairman, Guinness Nigeria Plc, Mr. Babatunde Savage, said, “I will like to thank Peter (Ndegwa) for his transformational work over the past few years; he has led the business through challenging times and taken us forward. It is great to see him move on within Diageo. I will also like to use this opportunity to welcome Baker to the role. I look forward to working with him.”