Pampelle apéritif aims to ‘disrupt Italian-heavy category’

Jan 15, 2018by Amy Hopkins

New apéritif brand Pampelle, which is made using grapefruits from Corsica and is distilled in Cognac, is eyeing up the market share of Aperol and Campari.

Launched by Patrick Borg, Pampelle is now available in the UK through distributor Mangrove, following a soft launch in Australia. The brand claims to be "30% naturally lower in sugar" than other leading spirit apéritifs, and at 15% abv, is aiming to capitalise on the lower abv drinks trend. “I also wanted to create a spirit that brings the apéritif back to France, the home of the apéritif occasion, and provide a product that will disrupt the Italian-heavy category,” Borg told The Spirits Business. “Crafted in Cognac on the banks of the River Charente, Pampelle is the product to do this.” He added: “With the resurgence of the apéritif, we realised that there was a gap in the market for a bitter apéritif spirit that also shone with natural flavour. I wanted to create a drink that you could enjoy for all occasions, from brunch to sundown.” The product is made from grapefruits that have been harvested in Corsica. The fruits are then transported to a distillery based on the banks of the River Charente in Cognac, where they are macerated in copper vats and infused with botanical distillates, such as Japanese yuzu and Haitian bitter orange bigarade. Batches are then blended with cinchona tree bark quinine, Gentian bitters and eau-de-vie. “My parents are Maltese and they nurtured a very Mediterranean lifestyle for my siblings and me,” said Borg. “Pampelle is inspired by this heritage and my love for all things French. The liquid marries this Mediterranean lifestyle with the craftsmanship of the Cognac region.” Borg has “global ambitions” for Pampelle (priced £20/US$27.50 ) and is planning to launch the product in the US, UAE, Europe, Asia and international duty-free markets later this year.