Drink Trends April 2022

April 26, 2022

Flavoured Rum

Decadence inspires the latest drinks trends

International spirits, intense flavours and indulgent dessert-like drinks are the latest beverage trends appealing to consumers.

Continuing consumers’ interest in internationally-derived drinks, a fiery Asian spirit – baijiu – and a rich, creamy coffee – Einspänner coffee – are working their way into UK markets.

And hot on the heels of the ‘ginaissance’, flavoured rum is on the rise. Fruity combinations for younger drinkers and sophisticated spicy creations for the adventurous, mean this spirit could soon take gin’s top spot.

Hello Baijiu

A global favourite is a growing 2022 drinks trend for British drinkers – though you might not have ever heard of this popular spirit.

Baijiu (pronounced ‘Bye-Gio’) is already the world’s most consumed spirit. As the national drink of China its domestic fanbase contribute to billions of bottles being consumed annually.

Now the spirit is seeping into western markets.

Baijiu is distilled by fermenting sorghum, a lesser-known grain, in a complex process that develops an intense taste, likened to overly ripe fruit with an earthy aftertaste. Translated literally baijiu means white spirit, but its’ simple looks belie this fiery flavour. It typically holds high ABVs and is intended to be enjoyed as a shot.

Now, to appeal to the younger and more health-conscious drinkers, distillers have been experimenting with flavoured versions of baijiu, to renew its reputation.

Thanks to its range of flavour profiles, baijiu is easily built upon. Stronger baijiu suits tropical or spicy flavour additions, while lighter baijiu sits well with fruity or floral notes. Rice aroma baijiu is likened to Japanese sake, offering honey and floral flavours. It is this type that distillers are using as a base for flavour additions, adding Chinese spices, florals and fruits.

Baijiu is also tipped to become a spirit base for cocktails, to be combined with citrus and tropical fruit flavours and bitter aperitifs.

Baijiu’s craft brewed credentials and international, unusual flavours make it an obvious drinks trend for UK consumers interested in the origins of their drinks and seeking something entirely different.

All for flavoured rum

As launches of new flavoured gins have slowed, opportunities are growing to capture consumers’ interest with exciting flavoured rums.

With potential to deliver all manner of flavour profiles, spiced, botanical and fruity influences can all be used as inspiration to create flavours for rum.

Rum’s roots – giving connotations of carefree fun – set the tone for fruity flavour additions. Tropical-themed pineapple, mango or coconut flavoured white rums packaged in eye-catching, bright bottles are attracting to younger drinkers, especially as summer rolls round. Then as winter draws in apple flavoured rums could continue this drinks trend, thanks to a taste reminiscent of warming mulled ciders.

Rum’s other roots as a seafarers’ favourite are seeing it combine with the 2022 drinks trend for seaside flavours. Combining the spirit with savoury sea-derived ingredients like bitter salts and seaweed gives an interesting twist to sweet dark rums.

Rum can be sophisticated too. Its range of natural flavours are easily enhanced – earthy rums are elevated with trendy botanicals and spicy rums suit smooth additions. These botanical combinations also support a seamless transition for drinkers to shift from gin to rum.

Flavoured rum fits in to two key drinks trends for 2022 – creating bold future flavours, and suiting consumers wanting to better understand and respect the origins of their drinks.

Whipping up a coffee frenzy

Coffee + cream = perfection, right?

That’s what Einspänner coffee offers drinkers, by combining coffee with whipped cream. Its interesting texture and an indulgent feel are attracting drinkers across Asia.

Its roots are European though. First created in Vienna, it is thought to have led the way for cappuccinos.  Served traditionally, it comprises a pour of hot black coffee topped with a generous serving of whipped cream, presented in a transparent, long glass to show off the pairing. But in warmer climates, Einspänner coffee is the new iced coffee, served cool to refresh drinkers in summer months.

And as rich drinks grow in popularity, baristas are now adding biscuits, pastries, syrups and sauces to take the Einspänner coffee from ‘just’ a drink to a dessert to be dipped into and eaten.

While this decadence might not appeal to the calorie-conscious drinkers, it certainly speaks to drinkers wanting a kick without relying on alcohol. This creamy coffee suits 2022 drinks trends for broader sensory experiences and premium-feeling flavours.

Start setting the future flavours

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Simpsons are leaders in the science, art and innovation of drinks flavours for drinks brands and companies. We are at the forefront of emerging drinks trends, with the knowhow and experience for our customers to use to their advantage, ensuring they are the first movers in their category.

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