Sazerac-owned spirits distributor Hi-Spirits has agreed a deal to distribute New Zealand brand Scapegrace Gin in the UK.
The 42.2% abv gin is produced by the Rogue Society Distilling Co, distilled in New Zealand using spring water sourced from the country's Southern Alps. The spirit is batch-distilled using a restored 19th century copper whisky still, with each batch individually numbered, and is described as complex with citrus notes with subtle floral and spice undertones.
Hi-Spirits managing director Dan Bolton said that consumers are seeking out more global products: 'Scapegrace is a great addition to our gin portfolio, as a premium spirit that carries New Zealand's reputation for clean, fresh flavours with it,' he said.
'Consumers increasingly enjoy a range of gins and gin serves in their drinking repertoire. Along with offering on-trade and off-trade retailers classic and modern gins, both British and global, we're helping them to plan their ranges and segment the gin category to meet consumer expectations.'
The partnership between Hi-Spirits and Scapegrace comes as UK gin sales continue to grow. Analyst Mintel estimates that total gin sales were worth £1bn in 2015, and will top £1.3bn by 2020.
Hi-Spirits says it will back the launch with a dedicated brand ambassador and marketing activity, including a branded Scapegrace Gin camper van which will be offered as a consumer prize for festival trips as well as operating as a pop-up bar. Sampling, POS, and on-trade staff training are also planned.