If the tradition doesn’t sell, change the tradition
Scotch Whisky has been around since 1495. Wikipedia says, a friar named John Cor was the distiller at Lindores Abbey in the Kingdom of Fife. Scotch has its own association called the Scotch Whisky Association that lays down iron rules. “Scotch must be distilled in Scotland from water and malted barley and aged in the country at least three years in oak casks. It should come out at least 40% alcohol byvolume.” Source: WSJ: 1/24/18
Diageo sells the most Scotch. Ten years ago Scotch made up about 60% of the world’s whiskey market, but last year just 49%. Alarm bells rang at Diageo. Perhaps the marketing people saw the success of Vodka by adding new flavors. For example, Grey Goose’s offers a Cherry Noir, Van Gogh vodka has pineapple and Finlandia sells a berry offering.
Diageo had some new ideas: “One idea was to finish aging Scotch in old tequila barrels instead of the sherry, cognac or port casks traditionally used. Another was to create a “Scotch whisky infusion,” a new category of flavored or low-alcohol blends sold under existing Scotch brands.” https://www.wsj.com/articles/if-youre-a-purist-about-scotch-whisky-you-might-find-this-hard-to-swallow-1516728633 But sadly for Diageo the association would have none of it. Ever. On this round tradition won.
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