Quench your thirst at the Farm Shop & Deli Show

Beverages are booming, whether it’s craft ales and spirits, speciality teas or artisan juices, there are numerous exhibitors offering exciting ways to quench your thirst at this year’s show. We caught up with a few of them to find out about the latest trends.

Time for a tipple

The popularity of artisan gin shows no sign of slowing down and there’s plenty to choose from among the show’s aisles this year, including Manchester Gin, Boe Gin, Bullards Norwich Gin, Pinkster, Sipsmith and more.

Could another spirit capture the public’s interest in the way that gin has? We put the question to Jo Painter of Norton Barton Artisan Food Village, who told us that craft rum was a growing trend:

“We’re starting to see an increase in the interest of craft rum, especially rum that is distilled in the UK rather than imported and blended with other ingredients (which can be in incredibly good in its own right).  At The Cornish Distilling Co (part of Norton Barton Artisan Food Village) we distil British rum from scratch, meaning we ferment too.  Fermentation of the base spirit brings a whole new dimension to the distilling process that requires a new level of skill as well as equipment. This results in a much more complex flavour in our rum.  Because we ferment the base spirit ourselves, we innovate our rum from the very beginning of its life – a true craft spirit.  We are launching our white rum and spiced rum for the Summer of 2018 which we are very excited about!

If you like the sound of sampling some rum, Aluna Coconut (Stand E112) is worth visiting. It’s made from a blend of rums from Guatemala and the Caribbean with all-natural toasted coconut flavours and has already enjoyed great success in the UK. Co-owner Guy Ritchie commented: "Coconut continues to be a hugely popular flavour and ingredient with UK consumers.  Aluna Coconut was built from coconut out? rather than being a rum line extension or a sticky liqueur and people really notice the difference.  We only use natural coconut ingredients and even add pure, sustainably sourced coconut water when we cut to bottling strength. It is squarely aimed at more discerning drinkers who appreciate well put together products with the best possible flavours."

Health trends

It seems the overarching consumer trend towards health and wellness applies even in the alcohol sector, Tori Sotiropoulos of Kold Group (Stand: N91J), told us more: “We believe there is a massive shift towards drinking healthier. No longer is it about quantity but about quality and consumers are willing to spend a little more to get a much better-quality product. Consumers have become more sugar and calorie conscious in the food sector and that is definitely affecting trends in the drinks world, just look at the rise of non-alcoholic spirits and low-abv beers, there is a real demand for lighter drinks and this demand will only increase in the coming years”.

Kold Group are answering this trend with the launch of Kalosa Spritz, a light and refreshing alcoholic drink with only 99 calories per bottle.

While you’re exploring alcoholic options at the show don’t miss the vast array of craft ales, premium wines, meads and more. Plus there’s a whole host of clever drinks innovations such as OXI-GIN Botanicals (Stand: E118), who are behind a new concept of handmade infusion bags for Gin & Tonic. Consisting of dehydrated/freeze dried fruits and spices that infuse like a tea bag in your G&T.

Speciality soft drinks

If you’re looking to up your soft drinks offering there’s plenty to see and try, why not pay a visit to Nonsuch Shrubs (Stand: F129), to try their lightly sparkling blend of fruit juice, sparkling spring water and cyder vinegar with no added sugar.

There’s also artisan juices on offer from the likes of The Extraordinary John Starkey (Stand: F136) and Cawston Press (Stand M74) as well as smoothie sachets for cafes and coffee shops by Projuice (Stand G88).

Grown-up soft drinks are a key trend too, we like the sound of Ceiba Drinks (Stand: D63) who have been craft brewing cinnamon infusions since 2007. Made with natural ingredients, their healthy cinnamon infusions are craft brewed in small batches and then blended with fruit juices to make refreshing adult soft drinks.

Unique hot drinks

There’s plenty to see when it comes to hot beverages at the show. For starters, Archivist (Stand E129) will be launching Flamboyant & Co teas, a new range featuring innovative blends including Gin & Tonic, Hot Toddy and Booster Tea.

For something sweet, we like the sound of Coco Chocolatier (Stand: F91) and their flavour-packed hot chocolate, stored in metal tins and available in dark, milk and white chocolate.

To see the full array of beverages on offer from exhibitors at the show browse the show’s Products page.