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Aug 12, 2022

Mustard-based donuts, beer-infused sneakers, cheese cocktails… No, this episode isn’t about trying to gross you out. 

Rather, the hosts discuss recent marketing campaigns, collaborations and limited-edition merchandise involving legacy and small brands and how each is attempting to strike a chord with target consumers. They also highlight BevNET articles about a major beverage deal and new funding for a specialty retail chain, riff on a suds-inspired day of celebration and chat about notable new products including premium canned tea, a conglomerate’s foray into spicy sauces and sake cocktails.

This episode also features an interview with Dr. Emma Walker, the master blender for Johnnie Walker, for a ten-pack of questions about her trailblazing role and the future of the iconic Scotch whisky brand.

Show notes:

0:48: Everyone Loves Guinness (Well…), The Good, The Bad And The Weird, Do We Need A Store For That? – The show opens with a chat about Ray’s passion for a certain Irish beer brand, before the hosts reviewed Velveeta’s attempt to mix in, Aura Bora’s “secret menu,” Heineken’s odd kicks, why French’s is imploring consumers “taste the tang” at breakfast and Tito’s middle finger to the canned cocktail category. They also briefly discuss PepsiCo’s new and exclusive distribution deal with Celsius and a capital raise for non-alcoholic beverage retailer Boisson, plus highlight peanut butter-stuffed dates and “choco nuts” and a new line of premium condiments from Heinz.

32:20: Dr. Emma Walker, Master Blender, Johnnie Walker –  Dr. Walker sat down with Ray at the 2022 Tales of the Cocktail conference, for an expansive conversation about her work with Johnnie Walker, including her leadership style and stewardship of the brand, her thoughtful way of communicating with colleagues and consumers and her perspective on being a trailblazer for women in the whiskey business.

Brands in this episode: Athletic Brewing Co., Guinness, Dogfish Head, Trillium Brewing, Oat Haus, Truff, Velveeta, Fishwife, Fly By Jing, Milk Bar, Aura Bora, Heineken, French’s, Paqui, Tito’s, Reishi Tea, Italicus, Savoia, Celsius, Mike’s Hot Honey, Momofuku, Heinz, Motto, Rollin’ & Bowlin’, Joolies, Pocket Latte, Ysidro, Johnnie Walker