Five brilliant failures from the creator of Baileys

Distilling Guinness

Picture source: ‘That S*it Will Never Sell!’

“There are times in a career when you have an idea, inspect it, and marvel at its pure simplicity,” writes Gluckman.

Speaking about his Distilled Guinness brand, which he describes as “possibly my favourite idea ever”, he says that “Everything came together in a few seconds and the solution appeared to be perfect. Unfortunately, I was the only person who felt that way. So this new drink never materialised.”

Gluckman’s light bulb moment occurred just after the merger betwseen IDV and GuinnessUD in 1997 when the newly-combined company’s technical team met to consider the creation of a Guinness whisky.

Having attended a “large gathering” to discuss the idea, Gluckman told the attendees “that to be true to the Guinness DNA you would need to do an Irish whiskey” which presented a problem.

The supplies of Irish whiskey were mostly owned by competitor business Pernod Ricard, and so, he writes, if the new company (Diageo) bought whisky from Pernod, it would be “using the powerful Guinness name to take business from its Scotch whisky.”

Continuing, he records, “And then it happened… if you know anything about whisky distillation you realise that the first stage in the process is fermentation. You actually make a beer – and then you distil it. That was the answer. We wouldn’t do a Guinness whisky at all. We would simply take Guiness and distil it.”

Sadly for Gluckman, however, the idea “vanished into the maw of what was becoming an enormous corporation and was never seen again. Well not in my time.”

Nevertheless, he adds, “I remain convinced that the idea of distilled beer is a very exciting proposition.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please note that comments are subject to our posting guidelines in accordance with the Defamation Act 2013. Posts containing swear words, discrimination, offensive language and libellous or defamatory comments will not be approved.

Subscribe to our newsletters

Sales Manager

James Eadie Ltd
London, UK

Wine Ambassador Role

Ramón Bilbao UK
London, UK

Fine Wine Logistics Coordinator

IG Wines
London, UK

Sales Manager

Top Selection
London, UK

Assistant Retail Manager

The Whisky Exchange
London, UK

Marketing Manager

Ellis Wines
Hanworth, Middx, GB

Commercial Analyst

ATOM Group
Tunbridge Wells, UK

Customer Service Executive

Marussia Beverages
Marylebone, London, UK

HR Administrator

Amathus Drinks PLC
London, UK

Trade Marketing Manager

Australian Vintage Limited
Croydon, UK

The World Bulk Wine Exhibition

Amsterdam,Netherlands
20th Nov 2017

The Drinks Business Green Awards 2017

London,United Kingdom
20th Nov 2017

The Global Spirits Masters Lunch

London,United Kingdom
1st Dec 2017
Click to view more

Champagne Masters 2017

The only Champagne blind tasting in the UK, the competition will reward the best wines in the following categories:

The Global Rosé Masters 2017

With wines from the palest of pink to almost ruby red, bone dry to almost cloyingly sweet, reductively handled to barrel-aged, as well as gently spritzy to fully sparkling.

Click to view more