Aker debuts ‘uniquely English aperitif’

by Georgie Pursey

English brand Aker has collaborated with Capreolus Distillery and wine producer Chapel Down to launch its first product, English Rosé Aperitif.

The ‘uniquely English aperitif brand’ hopes to tap into rising consumer awareness around health, provenance, and the ‘thirst for appreciating all things home-grown’. Founder of Aker Ian Bayliss said: “England has an incredible history of craftsmanship and talent and we want to celebrate that through the fantastic produce we have right on our doorstep. “The majority of food and drink we buy is shipped in from all corners of the globe, and we want to challenge that by partnering with two English producers who are the best at what they do, using fresh ingredients that are locally produced for maximum flavour.” Aker has also been created to satisfy the growing consumer interest around English wine producers, and the demand for premium products that avoid sugary preservatives and focus on all-natural ingredients. Aker English Rosé Aperitif is made with a combination of rosé wines from Chapel Down winery in Kent and raspberry eau-de-vie from Capreolus Distillery in The Cotswolds. English botanicals, including blossoms, roots and spices, are balanced with wormwood before being distilled with Chapel Down Chardonnay grape skin distillate to enhance the flavour even further. Aker English Rosé Aperitif is bottled at 17% ABV and designed for a longer, lighter drink experience. The Aker Perfect Serve consists of 60ml Aker English Rosé served in an ice-filled wine glass and topped with a splash of tonic or soda. It is garnished with an English strawberry and sprig of home-grown mint. The brand hopes to disrupt the vermouth category and ‘redefine aperitif culture’ in the UK. Bayliss continued: “In the last few years the European aperitivo moment has dominated the market. But we believe it’s time for a new brand that represents the very best of modern English culture.” The brand launched to the UK trade and consumer market yesterday (20 July). It is available on the Aker website and The Whisky Exchange for an RRP £35 (US$41.77) per 750ml bottle. “Aker is such an exciting project,” added Barney Wilczak, Capreolus Distillery founder. “The creation of a vermouth that elegantly connects us to the essence of the British countryside is something so incredibly special.” Aker will release more expressions in the coming months. Earlier this year, Provence-based rosé producer Mirabeau partnered with Vault Vermouth to launch a limited edition rosé vermouth using the surplus stock of Mirabeau’s 2019 Vintage Prét-à-Porter cans of rosé.