Inside the Industry

Today’s Gins Distill Timeless Appeal with a Modern Twist

As innovative distillers challenge tradition, gin is evolving in exciting and unexpected ways. Whether hailing from surprising origins or possessing a less-Juniper-forward flavor profile, today’s gins lend themselves to experimentation with creative cocktails.
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Blackberry and Mint Gin Cocktail
Bourbon Smash Cocktail
Inside the Industry

Authenticity, quality can help reach Gen Z ‘mindful drinkers’

The future is calling, and it’s talking about wellness and self-care. The generation that follows the Millennial cohort, Gen Z (defined by Pew Research as born between 1997 and 2012) includes young adults now of legal drinking age. Unlike previous generations, these younger drinkers are more likely to embrace moderation.
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Ray Furman
Get to Know Us

Interview with Ray Furman, Master Distiller and Fermentation & Yeast Manager.

Somehow Ray Furman made his way from a well-known wine and brewing region to MGP’s historic distillery in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. Along the way, he performed quality control on diapers. These days, he’s a self-taught expert on fermentation and distilling. Meet Ray.
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Inside Whiskey Barrel POV
Inside the Industry

American Whiskey’s History, Complex Taste Gain International Following

American Whiskey is popular far beyond its roots. With good reason, as U.S. distillers begin to offer more spirits from the fast-growing premium and super-premium category in export markets. But there’s more to the international love affair with U.S.-crafted bourbons and ryes.
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Pouring Whiskey
Inside the Industry

Pandemic Upended the Spirits Industry But Opens New Possibilities

A new year, and the spirits market begins what global market intelligence firm Mintel forecasts as a three-year “recovery period” from the impact of COVID-19. The pandemic accelerated trends in alcohol consumption that will continue to shape consumer demand in 2022.
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Rye Field
Masters of Spirits

Non-GMO Spirits Can Set Brands Apart as ‘Ultra-Premium’

Consumers’ concern about how food and drink impacts their health has been amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic. These concerns include persistent questions about Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and suggests that non-GMO ingredients remain a strong differentiator for people interested in consuming products they consider ‘healthier’. In fact, a 2020 Lightfoot/Mintel survey of 2,000 U.S. residents over age 18 found that 47% believe non-GMO foods are healthier than foods containing genetically- modified ingredients.
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Rye Whiskey w lemon twist
Masters of Spirits

Rye Whiskey Spices Up the 21st Century American Whiskey Renaissance

Like an insistent puppy that won’t stop nipping at your heels, rye whiskey is a relentless competitor to bourbon that doggedly continues to make inroads with consumers. Perhaps this shouldn’t come as a surprise. Rye may be the most ‘American’ of American whiskeys, whose popularity is booming across the U.S. and abroad.
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Single Malt Whiskey
Inside the Industry

A Singly Popular American Whiskey

In the craft distilling community, innovation often pays tribute to time-bound processes and mash bills.  The American Single Malt Whiskey revival does that, with a twist, sometimes looking to inspiration from Scotland, Ireland and Japan. But it remains distinctly American, further enhancing the nation’s reputation for fine whiskeys as craft distillers create a product distinctive from traditional bourbons and ryes, according to drinks market research firm IWSR.
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Cocktails and Dreams Neon
Inside the Industry

RTD Cocktails Showcase Quality Craft Spirits

Craft distilleries constantly innovate to stay relevant in the crowded spirits category. Case in point: Ready-to-drink cocktails. Gone are the days when hyper-sweet concoctions dominated the category. Craft distillers in recent years recognized that premixed, canned cocktails were an excellent outlet to introduce their brands and showcase   quality spirits. The opportunity remains solid with the popularity of cocktails-to-go and consumers’ desire to drink premium spirits at home, trends that boomed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Fermentation Tank
Masters of Spirits

Innovative distillers wild about yeast experimentation

Today’s distillers pay homage to the past. But they aren’t afraid to tweak the age-old art and science behind great whiskey. Case in point: Yeast research. Yeast is a basic component of all fermented beverages (beer, wine and spirits). Its function is to convert sugars from grains, plants and fruits into ethanol and carbon dioxide. For years, makers of spirits and other beverage alcohols have used strains from a species of yeast called Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Cerevisiae is preferred for its ability to repress wild microorganisms and efficiently convert sugars, producing consistent alcohol without ‘off’ flavors.
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Gin Heats Up
Masters of Spirits

A longtime cocktail staple enjoys the limelight

Gin is like an old friend. Reliable, familiar. Supportive of many iterations of the cocktail. Yes, gin is here to stay, according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS). In 2020, year-over-year sales of 9-liter cases rose 4.2% to more than 10 million. Revenue to gin suppliers increased 5.9% to $972 million. “Thanks to the humble juniper berry, gin has a delightful subtle flavor with versatility,” DISCUS says. “America’s thirst for gin lies in the popularity of the many fine cocktails highlighted by the revival of the cocktail renaissance. Gin’s pleasurable taste and versatile flavors make it a perfect base for any classic or complex mixed drink.”
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Super Premium Spirits Photo
Inside the Industry

Do Super-Premium Spirits Have Staying Power?

Super-premium spirits were hot at the dawn of 2020. Then, a little thing called a pandemic forced consumers to stay home. Unable to spend on travel and other experiences, they experimented with cooking and cocktails, turning to online shopping for their alcohol, including high-end spirits.
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Quality Control Tasting Panel
Inside the Industry

Exceptional Whiskeys Begin with Exceptional Quality

The lore surrounding American whiskey has captivated an eager market. Especially the notion of “craft,” with carefully created mash bills, skillful blending and unique barrel finishes. And there are famous stories about fermentation and distillation -- every aspect of the whiskey-making process -- passed down across generations.
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Bottled-in-Bond
Then & Now

Dusting Off Bottled-in-Bond for a New Generation

Sooner or later … Everything old is new again. This idea, attributed to author Stephen King as well as a song by Peter Allen, is certainly true in the case of dark spirits. Hunger for origin stories and the history surrounding distilleries, mash bills – occasionally even the age and provenance of yeast used in fermentation – are helping fuel the passion for American Whiskey.
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Market Modernization
Inside the Industry

After a tough year, some craft distilleries still look to expansion.

No question. 2020 was a rough year for U.S. craft distillers. The COVID-19 pandemic dealt a one-two punch: Not only were their tasting rooms forced to close, so were bars and restaurants, causing on-premise spirits consumption to plummet. Still, some craft distillers are considering expansion, even if their 2021 will be something of a reset. Their optimism is based on expectations for pent-up consumer demand and new opportunities born out of necessity during the pandemic: Direct to Consumer sales; cocktails-to-go; and scaling operations as a cost-savings measure. DISCUS refers to these kinds of developments as “market modernizations” that will help boost the industry’s recovery.
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