UK distributor for the likes of El Dorado Demerara Rum, Hayman’s Gin and Four Pillars Gin, Love Drinks will launch a new brand to its portfolio at Imbibe Live.
A bottled virgin gin and tonic named The Duchess will be available to taste on 3-4 July and buy from Love Drinks in September.
The South African native, Duchess, was launched in its domestic market last September. It is billed as a non-alcoholic gin and tonic with aromatic botanical extracts to create a sugar-free alternative to alcohol.
With a distinct gin and tonic taste, Duchess is blended with layers of orange peel, allspice, star anise, cloves, and cardamom.
‘The Duchess was created for the conscious consumer – the healthy and discerning individual,’ co-founder Johannes Le Roux, said. ‘In South Africa, as with the UK, more and more people are choosing alcohol-free options, but don’t want drinks that have a high sugar content. Creating an alcohol and sugar-free drink addresses this need.
‘Obviously the taste was the number one priority – the drink had to taste exactly like an alcoholic version of a gin and tonic – and we tried many variants before going with the liquid we have now.
‘One of our secret ingredients is the botanicals that we add to the tonic water – the botanicals were formulated by my aunt, a local botanist, who often experiments with herbs and botanicals found in South Africa. Once she added a few drops of the botanicals – we knew that the flavour was perfect.’
The name for the drink is said to come from the people who first produced gin: the Dutch. ‘We wanted to give the drink a regal, premium association, hence the reference to royalty,’ Le Roux added.
Kirsty Loveday, chief executive of Love Drink, added: ‘Increasingly, we are seeing that people are becoming sober curious.
‘At Love Drinks, we felt that there was an opportunity to bring into our portfolio a great tasting drink that addressed that rise. Once we tried The Duchess, we knew that it would be a perfect addition and a viable option for those choosing not to drink alcohol, whatever their reason.’
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