Beverage Dynamics

Beverage Dynamics Jan-Feb 2016

Beverage Dynamics is the largest national business magazine devoted exclusively to the needs of off-premise beverage alcohol retailers, from single liquor stores to big box chains, through coverage of the latest trends in wine, beer and spirits.

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Page 64 of 71 January/February 2016• Beverage Dynamics 65 THE ALLURE OF EXOTIC SPIRITS BY JACK ROBERTIELLO AS THE AMERICAN ROMANCE with international spirits continues, retailers often fi nd themselves in the position of selling categories beyond their working knowledge base. Here, Beverage Dynamics presents seven of those exotic spirits in one place, creating a snapshot of their market potential, production methods and unique qualities. PICSO'S POPULARITY Pisco is a South American grape brandy, over which Peru and Chile have long battled as the rightful home country. But for U.S. retailers, that merely means plenty of choice. Records of pisco production in Peru date to 1613, and the drink was once highly popular on the west coast of the U.S., especially in San Francisco. Pisco sours and punches were widely served there in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Today, Peru has fairly rigid standards of production. By law, pisco is made in limited re- gions by distilling fermented must of only eight grapes. There are two grape categories - aromatic (Italia, Albilla, Muscat, and Torontel) and non-aromatic (Quebranta, Negra Criolla, Mollar and Uvina). Peruvian pisco must be distilled to bottling proof (roughly 40 percent ABV), and aging in wood is not allowed. However, spirits may rest in stainless steel, glass or earthen jugs called piscos. Styles of Peruvian pisco include puro (made from one varietal), and the more widely available acholado (blended pisco made from two or more varieties). Mosto verde pisco, made with partially unfermented must, tends to be rare and more expensive. In Chile, producers have fewer limitations. They may distill to a higher proof or multiple times and add water before bot- tling. They are also allowed to age in wood, and some do briefl y, creating a golden-hued brandy. There, piscos are categorized by proof - 30 percent ABV for traditional, 35 for especial, 40 for a reservado and 43 for a gran pisco. Aged piscos are either guarda (aged less than a year) or envejecido (aged at least one year). Three types of Muscat grapes are allowed, though Moscatel of Alexandria is the most widely used; Pedro Jimenez and Torontel are also allowed. In the U.S., the producers of Peruvian pisco, like Diego Loret de Mola of BarSol, Melanie and Lizzie Asher of La Diablada SELECTED LEADING BRANDS OF EXOTIC SPIRITS, 2012-2014 (9-Liter Cases) '13/'14 Brand Supplier Country of Origin Category 2012 2013 2014 % Change Monte Alban Gold Sazerac Mexico Mezcal 30 35 40 14.3% Leblon Cachaça Bacardi/Leblon Brazil Cachaça 31 33 34 3.0% Jinro Soju Jinro USA South Korean Shochu / Soju 22 23 24 4.3% Capel Shaw-Ross Int'l Importers Chile Pisco 16 16 17 6.3% Pisco Portón Pisco Portón, LLC Peru Pisco 8 12 13 8.3% Gusano Rojo Mezcal Frank-Lin Mexico Mezcal 5 7 9 28.6% Ypioca Anchor Distilling Brazil Cachaça 6 6 9 45.0% Pitu Winebow Brazil Cachaça 6 6 6 -8.3% Cachaça '51' Sazerac Brazil Cachaça 5 5 5 -10.0% Velho Barreiro Admiral Imports Brazil Cachaça 5 5 5 -10.0% Wild Shot Mezcal Shaw-Ross Int'l Importers Mexico Mezcal 3 4 4 0.0% Sagatiba Cachaca Campari America Brazil Cachaça 7 6 1 -83.3% Don Cesar Pisco Anchor Distilling Peru Pisco 1 1 1 -33.3% Total Leading Brands 145 159 166 4.4% was once highly popular on the west coast of the U.S., especially

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