Jameson, Diageo and Seagram…

Having just returned from a holiday in the Emerald Isle, I thought I would share some thoughts, especially about my favorite topic.


Seagram had the distribution rights to this Irish whiskey for quite some time and, frankly, didn’t do much with it. With the exception of St. Patrick’s Day promotions and pushing the Irish Coffee drink, the brand went nowhere for years. I suppose it’s understandable, with millions of scotch sales at the heart of the portfolio, there was little room for this great brand.

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Boodles Gin — Then and Now


By the time I got to Seagram, Boodles British Gin was an idea whose time never came.  As the saying goes, “She was dead when I got there, Officer.”

The brand was developed in the 1950s or 60s under a license from the Boodles Club in London, founded in 1762 by the Earl of Shelburne, later the Marquess of Lansdowne and Prime Minister. The club, which is 250 years old this year, was named after its headwaiter, Edward Boodle.

Get this — the licensing fee was the gin; use of the name in exchange for free goods.

To say that the brand languished at Seagram is an understatement. The fact is, while some gin aficionados felt it was a great tasting gin, Boodles spent many years in and out of the Seagram hospice companies. The problems – real or perceived – included concerns about the square package (too wide for a back bar) and loss of identity when placed sideways. The “oodles” of Boodles taunt by some consumers added to the death rattle, particularly in light of the awful marketing on behalf of the brand.

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“Dude… there’s weed in my wine”

Buffalo Trace Newsletter reprinted a story from the Daily Beast headlined, “Marijuana-Laced Wine Grows More Fashionable in California Wine Country.”

Apparently, it’s quite common for winemakers to produce cannabis cuvées with bold reds such as Cabernet and Syrah.  The recipe is a pound of marijuana dropped into a cask of wine, which yields about 1.5 grams of weed per bottle. The article quotes the president of the Napa Valley Marijuana Growers who says the combination of alcohol and marijuana produces “an interesting little buzz.” “People love wine,” he goes on the say, “and they love weed.”

I think there are a number of good reasons for marijuana infused wine to be more readily available.

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