Black Irish launches in Finland

Darker Still Spirits-owned Black Irish has gained a listing with Finland-based drinks retailer Alko, and will be rolled out in 360 stores nationwide.

The whiskey-and-stout spirit drink has expanded its international presence, and will be available to buy in-store and through Alko's official website. The product will be represented in Finland by drinks wholesaler and retailer Vinic Oy. John Soden, chief commercial officer of Kirker Greer Spirits, said: “We are delighted to have Black Irish listed in Alko and look forward to working closely with our import partners Vinic Oy and the team at Alko to build the brand in Finland over the coming years.” Black Irish recently rolled out in Ireland global travel retail, after securing a listing with The Loop in Dublin Airport. It further expanded its international presence last year, with distribution deals in markets such as the Netherlands, Germany, France and the UK. Black Irish is developed by Dublin-based Darker Still Spirits, and matured in deep-charred American ex-Bourbon casks. The dark colour of the triple-distilled Irish whiskey derives from a blend of strong stout and barrel-aged stout. The blend is then used to cut the cask strength whiskey to a bottling strength of 40% ABV. On the nose, the whiskey presents aromas of coffee and ‘light bitter notes’, plus chocolate malt and roasted barley. It is presented in bottles inspired by vintage beer bottles, with its dark glass combined with a crown cap and flip-top closure. The recipe was developed by Adrian Walker, who is said to have been responsible for several brand developments, including Cîroc Vodka. The drink is distributed internationally through Kirker Greer Spirits, which also owns Ukiyo Japanese Rice Vodka, a spirit made with black kōji fungus, and Ginato Gin. In November last year, it was revealed that a trademark dispute between Black Irish and Mariah Carey has resulted in the singer being unable to sell her cream liqueur of the same name in the European Union.