Wednesday, 8 May 2019

Gordon(s) Bennett!

You can't beat a good G&T, and it has long been a tradition in our family to knock back one or two on Christmas Eve. It's always been Gordon's and Schweppes, mainly because, until a few years ago, that's all you could lay your hands on in rural Germany.

When the gin craze started, both here and back in Blighty, I felt a little smug, but also pleased that gin was becoming more available as an alternative to the ubiquitous Aperol Spritz. But as time went on, I wondered about Gordon's and how it would fare. The brand did seem to feel a bit staid and dusty in comparison to all the new pretenders to the throne down at the Gin Palace.

But while all those new pretenders are trying to outdo each other on authenticity and pedigree and  credentials, Gordon's have gone unashamedly for the mass market. It's a move that I am sure will rake in the sales short-term, but what will it do for the brand?

I tried Gordon's Premium Pink Distilled Gin  the other day and rather wished I hadn't. It tastes of sickly strawberries, a bit like what they call Gummibärchen here. It has absolutely nothing to do with what I know as Pink Gin, beloved of retired navy officers, Royal Air Force heroes and people from Somerset Maugham stories. That was made mixed with Angostura bitters.

But back to the sweet new abomination. It is promoted with a rather questionable nod to authenticity: Inspired by Gordon's original 1880 pink gin recipe.  That's on the bottle. On the website, however, it's slightly different: Inspired by an original Gordon's recipe from the 1880s. This makes it clear enough that this concoction has precious little to do with any original recipe for Pink Gin. Most of the "usual suspect" 21st century descriptors are used: "crafted" "balance" "blushing" "berries" "vibrant."

This stuff is undoubtably enjoyed by overgrown girls at Ladies' Day and the Gin Bar down at the Brexit Arms, and I am sure it will rake in some good short-term profits. I can't help thinking, though, that they might as well have put a unicorn on the packaging instead of the traditional wild boar and been done with it.

Call me an old fuddy-duddy, but I think Gordon's have sold out.

1 comment:

Sue Imgrund said...

A good article about Brand Comebacks -