Jim Beam finds UK ripe for rye

Jim Beam is set to introduce its rye expression to the UK in response to growing demand for different styles of American whiskey.

JB Rye hi-resBottled at 40% abv, Jim Beam Rye is aged for four years in charred oak barrels to create a character that the producer described as “spicy, bold and full of flavour.” It carries an RRP of £24 per 700ml bottle.

Launching into the on-trade this month, distributor Maxxium UK is positioning the expression as ideal for drinking either neat, over ice or as a twist for traditional Bourbon-based cocktails such as the Old Fashioned and Manhattan. In addition to appealing to existing rye drinkers, the brand is hoping to recruit a new base of whisky enthusiasts on the hunt for something different.

As reported by the drinks business, sales of American whiskey, in particular Bourbon, are riding high in London on the back of a recent surge in American-themed restaurants such as The Lockhart, Jackson & Rye and a wave of upmarket steak houses.

The launch of Jim Beam Rye follows the brand’s introduction of a 12-year-old Bourbon into the UK market earlier this year.

“The thirst for good quality rye whiskey is at a record high and we feel that the time is right to fully introduce our very own Jim Beam Rye to the UK market,” commented Eileen Livingston, marketing controller for imported whiskey at Maxxium UK.

“We have received considerable interest in our brand and are excited to introduce the trade and consumers to another member of the Jim Beam family.”

2014 has been a transformative year for Jim Beam’s parent company, which was recently bought for $16 billion by Japanese firm Suntory to create Beam Suntory Inc, the world’s third largest drinks group.

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