Source: Technomic Blog
2014 may well be the year adult beverage categories collide, both in the bottle and in the glass. The practice of mixing categories certainly isn’t new; brandy brings weight and complexity to sangria, while the Irish Car Bomb typically marries Guinness with Baileys Irish Cream and Jameson Irish whiskey. But such marriages seem to be on the rise.
Recently, suppliers and bartenders alike have brought forth a bevy of cross-category concoctions designed to pique consumer and patron interest and provide that all-important differentiating factor that drives purchase. Supplier examples include Pernod-Ricard’s Malibu Red (rum and tequila) and Absolut Tune (vodka and sparkling Sauvignon Blanc), Blue Moon’s Vintage Blonde Ale (involving Chardonnay), and Dogfish Head’s winter seasonal, Piercing Pils (pears, white pear tea). Launched in the fall, Winter Jack from Brown-Forman mingles apple cider liqueur with Jack Daniel’s.
Operators also are tapping into the cross-category combo trend. Red Robin’s beer-fueled milkshake tipped off the trend’s mainstream appeal when the Samuel Adams-spiked libation made headlines in 2012. This past summer, the burger chain featured two Can-Crafted Cocktails, one of which combined Coors Light with ginger liqueur and lemonade, while the other mixed Blue Moon with Svedka Clementine Vodka, orange juice and lime juice.
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