Whisky-filled capsules – a marketing stunt or a whole new way to drink?

Scottish whisky company Glenlivet has created shot-sized capsules. Not everyone thinks they are a great idea

 

Scottish whiskey company Glenlivet created something on a social media storm this week, garnering 7.5 million views and plenty of comment. The item in question is the Glenlivet Capsule Collection, three small shot-sized capsules, each featuring a cocktail based on Glenlivet Founders Reserve.

The short clip on Twitter says “no ice, no stirrer no glass – we are redefining how whisky can be enjoyed”. To which the question might be, are glasses and ice such a huge problem? Apparently they are part of London Cocktail Week, with recipes created by Tayer Bar in London.

Online, it was compared to the Tide Pod Challenge controversy of 2018, when individuals filmed themselves gagging on washing tabs. Just to be clear, the whisky cocktail capsules are not poisonous and, as they come in a seaweed-based material, are arguably are more sustainable than bottles and glasses.

The pods are “a first of its kind for a spirit brand”, according to the promotional material issued by the company. “The edible capsules are 23ml in size, fully biodegradable and provide the perfect flavour-explosion experience. Enjoying them is simple, the capsules are popped in the mouth for an instant burst of flavour, and the capsule is simply swallowed.”

In Ireland, a pub measure of spirits, is 35.5ml.

Ally Alpine of Celtiic Whiskey said the pods may be aimed at the US market and were unlikely to take off in Ireland. “I did check it was not April’s Fools Day first, but it appears to be real. It seems to be like a shot, and drinking cocktail shots is huge in the US, so it might work there. But I wouldn’t see them being big in Ireland, were we don’t really drink that way. Or maybe it is just a marketing ploy to gain publicity. In which case it has worked!”

The reaction among some scotch and whisky enthusiasts was. well, not so enthusiastic.

“Surely this is a sick joke,” wrote Julia MacFarlane. ABC’s foreign affairs reporter in the UK. “Glenlivet is not a tide pod. This is an abomination. What is going on. Somebody do something @NicolaSturgeon”

“Ummm, whisky cocktails are for sipping & savouring, not exploding in your mouth all in one go,” wrote another poster.

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