Current Issue: November 2014

 
 

In this Issue:

 
Digital liquor marketing
Louis XIII: The King of Cognac
Vijay Amritraj Reserve Collection: Courting excellence!
Chilean wines: Value for money
The dawdling yet positive growth of Wine Tourism in India
Embark on ‘The Journey’ with Johnnie Walker this December!
Innovation in packaging for better brand positioning
The Caviar Bar & Restaurant: Taste of imperial Russia!
 
 
 

Digital liquor marketing

Stress on need for Guiding Principles

Digital and social media communications towards branding and marketing is the in thing these days both globally and by major liquor companies in India and the various campaigns go a long way in increasing visibility and garnering brand loyalty, especially in an environment where alcohol advertising is heavily restricted and competition is increasing. Yet, there remains a grey area where it comes to the principles and guidelines at work in the virtual world, although most of the top companies do enforce ‘self-regulation’. Ambrosia takes a look at the intricacies of the issue.

Only recently, 13 of the world’s leading producers of beer, wine, and spirits launched the Digital Guiding Principles (DGPs), the firstever set of global guidelines for beverage alcohol producers’ online marketing and social media use. The DGPs require the content of any online marketing to meet the same high standards that apply to traditional marketing activities. The launch event, hosted by the International Center for Alcohol Policies, was attended by leaders in the fields of advertising selfregulation, alcohol policy, regulators, and representatives of signatory companies.

According to ICAP, the DGPs have been developed as part of the Beer, Wine and Spirits Producers’ Commitments to Reduce Harmful Drinking in close collaboration with the World Federation of Advertisers (WFA). They build on an extensive analysis of existing alcohol marketing self-regulation codes and aim to standardise them across companies, across markets, and across digital platforms to provide guidance for all digital marketing content produced by signatory companies moving forward.

 

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Louis XIII: The King of Cognac

Christophe Bourrie, Regional Director of Louis XIII, Remy Martin for South East Asia, Middle East and India narrates the wonder years of the brand and talks about the India market.

A bottle of Louis XIII is a surreal display of beauty and precision! Such an absolute mastery of time is rare to be found. The cognac defines the unceasing quest for excellence and quality. Originating solely from the impressive terroir of Grande Champagne, LOUIS XIII has been an epitome of luxury and symbolic exhibit of the French art-de-vivre since its conception, in 1874. And today after decades of journey, the cognac stands as an extraordinary element of a historical relevance, which effortlessly links present to the past.

Christophe Bourrie, Regional Director of Louis XIII, Remy Martin for South East Asia, Middle East says, “The creation of the Louis XIII cognac in 1874 was not a coincidence. It has been prepared with utmost care and by the successive initiatives taken within the House of Rémy Martin. Louis XIII embodies the essence of passion and work of generations of cellar masters. And the cognac is one of the oldest and has a rich history. It illustrates the collective work of men with strong bonds to their land, who are the keepers of such finesse.” The bottle is fashioned in such a manner that it looks like an art piece ready to embrace the changing time, with an extraordinary boldness.

 

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Vijay Amritraj Reserve Collection: Courting excellence!

From being a tennis ace to a UN Messenger of Peace, Vijay Amritraj has showcased many hues. And with the launch of a wine label ‘Vijay Amritraj Reserve Collection’, he has added yet another feather to his cap. Toprit Saifi speaks to him about the launch in Delhi.

Vijay Amritraj, the legendary tennis player developed a liking for hard drinks and this made him taste a wide range of wines from almost every region of the world inspiring him to go for his own label. Amritraj is India’s best-known tennis player, reaching number 16 on the world rankings in 1980 and beating many of the world’s leading players during his 20-year career, including John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors. He also enjoyed a brief acting career, starring as M16 agent Vijay in the 1983 James Bond film Octopussy and appearing as a starship captain in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. More recently Amritraj was a UN Messenger of Peace from 2001 until 2006 before setting up the Vijay Amritraj Foundation; supporting innocent victims of disease, tragedy and circumstance in India.

Telling us about his affair with wines, Amritraj reveals, “I was 19, in New Hampshire, USA, celebrating a big tournament win. It was the Volvo Championships in 1973. It was a good experience. I enjoyed it. However this may have been because I won!” That is where he fell in love with wines and is now the first celebrity in the country to own a label!

 

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Chilean wines: Value for money

With centuries of wine making history behind, Chile flaunts an impressive international clientele. And it is gaining popularity in India for its rich variety and the value for money it offers.

When the European Vitis vinifera vines were brought to Chile by Spanish conquistadors in the 16th century, Chile got its first taste of grapes. History has it that the conquistador Francisco de Aguirre Copiapó himself planted the first vine brought from wellknown Spanish vineyards. And Spanish missioners too planted vines to provide wine for the Catholic mass rituals. Gradually, plantation increased extending beyond the Bio Bio River. By the 18th century, estimates of 19 million vines were planted across the country. This led to an increase in wine production and Chile’s fame as wine producing country grew, so did its international export.

Later, in the mid-19th century several French wine varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Carmenère and Cabernet Franc were introduced in Chile. However, it was the early 1980s when by the introduction of stainless steel fermentation tanks and oak barrels for aging, Chile witnessed a sudden upsurge in wine export. Today, this new world wine appeal to people’s taste and has become connoisseur’s choice, across the world.

 

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The dawdling yet positive growth of Wine Tourism in India

Amidst the gradual increase in interest towards the consumption of wine, proportionally there seems to be an upsurge towards wine tourism as well, not only by the wine drinkers but by the enthusiasts as well.

“Wine is one of the most civilised things in the world and one of the most natural things of the world that has been brought to perfection…” were the wise words of Ernest Hemingway. For some, it is now an elixir and for some, it is a celebrated drink. But, gone are the days when wine was considered as an expensive commodity to be seen only in the hands of the elite. Over the years, people have started understanding the nuances towards wine and the culture of wine drinking. Blame it on the exposure the new generation receives or on the hardhitting wine tourism by group or individual players in the market. As novel as it might sound to many, wine tourism has been there for long now, even in an upcoming new-world country like India.

With foremost wine players in the Indian markets like Grover Zampa investing around 100 crores into building a resort in their Nasik vineyard itself shows a positive growth. One of the primary reasons for the investment is en route to lure people’s interest towards wine and wine tourism, in short providing a holistic approach to individuals taking the elixir.

As stated earlier, with increase in disposable income among the current generation and with exposure to a plethora of related activities, the interest among the consumer is increasing, which acts like a cherry on the cake for the owners. This brings us to the key question of how wine tourism affects the consumer’s interest towards wine drinking.

 

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Embark on ‘The Journey’ with Johnnie Walker this December

Johnnie Walker The Journey is a unique concept that brings together a global cultural experience using the creative mediums of film, music and performing arts. The second edition of The Journey will include live performances by world-renowned musicians, a critically acclaimed international theatre production, a debut film screening, idea-sharing sessions and workshops by the performers.

Johnnie Walker The Journey is an artistic attempt at bringing together the world’s most inspiring and progressive artists. In its first edition last year, Johnnie Walker introduced Indian audiences to a unique concept that brought together a global cultural experience using the creative mediums of film, music and performing arts called Johnnie Walker The Journey. The one day festival offered live performances by world-renowned musician The Alan Parsons Live Project, critically acclaimed hand-puppet theatre production company – Ouroboros – The Handspring Puppet Company and film screenings of Shane Carruth and ‘Q’ a.k.a Quashiq Mukherjee.

The Journey is back this year with its second edition and promising thrilling performances by Simon Greene of Bonobo (Live), Snarky Puppy, Kate Fryer’s Dislocate and Paul Potts. The Festival kicks off on 13th December at Mehboob Studios in Mumbai. “We are thrilled to move into the second edition of Johnnie Walker - The Journey where we believe, ‘Every Epic Journey begins with a Single Step’. The Festival had an impactful debut last year and we will continue our journey to lead a progressive movement among the Indian audiences. The Journey presents a wealth of cultural knowledge and content that will be narrated by artistes, who have an intriguing story of personal progress,” Bhavesh Somaya – Marketing & Innovation Director, Diageo India.

 

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Innovation in packaging for better brand positioning

With changing consumer preferences, several liquor companies are resorting to innovative packaging of their products, which is eventually helping build brand value, enhance retail presence, and perk up loyalty to drive sales.

Packaging is pivotal to a better presentation and promotion of any product. A good packaging would incorporate the aesthetic aspect as well to attract the attention of potential customers. It also influences the decision making power of a customer while purchasing a product. And, without a doubt, in liquor vertical, an innovative design of the packaged bottles, colour schemes, shapes and forms, besides the quality product create inquisitiveness among the potential buyers. The choice of a culturally acceptable colour scheme that targets potential customers is also an important aspect of packaging.

James Pennefather, General Manager, William Grant & Sons, India says, “Packaging plays a vital role in positioning and promoting a brand’s luxury credentials in the premium spirits industry. Premium spirits brands generally have premium and unique packaging that compliments the brand’s unique identity and positioning.” Arun Kumar, co-founder, Aspri Spirits, one of the leading distributors of premium wines, spirits and beer in the country established in 2004 adds, “While many consumers claim to be uninfluenced by the packaging of products, its importance cannot be underestimated as it contribute to brand equity and encourages people to choose a product over another.”

 

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The Caviar Bar & Restaurant: Taste of imperial Russia!

Caviar and vodka, anyone? The Caviar Bar & Restaurant at Belmond Grand Hotel Europe, St Petersburg, Russia offers an enticing pairing of caviar and vodka. Besides, the place also has AN assorted range of spirits and wines.

The Caviar bar & restaurant is a 19-th century neo-classic architectural marvel and exhibits imperial Russian influence. Opulence and beauty seems to be woven into the very fabric of the place.

Interior
The interior flaunts luxurious crystal embellishment, which have elegant copper furnishings. Adding to the veneer is the beautiful marble flooring and columns that gives you a glimpse of the grandeur of the imperial Russian era. The wall has been accentuated by marble panels that have quintessential neo-classic expressions. The tops of the columns, gilded cornices depicting crayfish and daisies and stucco paneling that portrays centaurs reveals much about the architectural style of the 20th century, which was fashioned to exhibit affluence. Moreover, the antique mirror décor and Gargoyle fountain adds to the extravagance and speaks volume about the neoclassic era that took pleasure in the revival of styles and elements of the classical period.

Quick bites and drinks
The place offers exclusive varieties of black caviar. History has it that the Russian Tzars were fond of caviar and none of their dinners were organised without caviar. The exclusivity that caviar enjoys can be attributed to the Romans. The roe was apparently a staple in Roman parties, who were famed for their excesses. And Caviar was reserved for the sole use by an upper stratum in the Roman society, even though it was easily available. Since then, it has become synonymous to luxury. The Caviar bar & restaurant also serves the rare gold caviar derived from the albino sterlet, which is a pale yellow coloured caviar.

 

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