just the Answer
Once a month, we put a drinks executive on the spot with a bout of quick-fire questions.
This week, editor Olly Wehring has been travelling through the winelands of Chile with the country's biggest wine producer, Concha y Toro. While there, he met Sebastian Aguirre, the company's marketing director for premium wines, to delve deeper into CyT's biggest brand, Casillero del Diablo.
Dmitry Ivanov was appointed global category director for rums at Bacardi in 2012. Earlier this month, editor Olly Wehring travelled to Puerto Rico to speak to him about the company's flagship white rum brand, where it went wrong in the past and Bacardi's hopes for its broader rum range going forward.
Sam Calagione, founder of Dogfish Head Brewery, is one of the figureheads of the US craft beer scene. The Delaware-based firm's tagline is "Off-centred ales for off-centred people". Here Calagione, also a TV star, explains Dogfish's future plans, his attitude to the big brewers and why US craft brewery closures are inevitable.
Jorge Grosse has been CEO of González Byass since mid-2006. Earlier this year, just-drink editor Olly Wehring met him in London to discuss Sherry, casks and the firm's moves to diversify its portfolio.
Siobhan Thompson joined Wines of South Africa 11 months ago after joining from drinks firm Distell. just-drinks deputy editor James Wilmore talks to Thompson about the challenges she has faced in 2014 and the opportunities for South African wine in Asia and the rest of Africa.
The owner of Te Pa Family Vineyards, Haysley MacDonald, and his head wine maker, Liam McElhinney, have been making waves in New Zealand with their fresh approach to wine making. This month, just-drinks met them during a trip to London to hear how their agricultural backgrounds have shaped the business and why consolidation in Marlborough will only go so far.
Neil McGuigan, Australian Vintage's CEO, is not a man short of words. The affable, 55 year-old Aussie, who has been in charge for four years and is part of the family that started the company, is happy to tell it like it is on most subjects. Here, just-drinks' deputy editor, James Wilmore, talks to McGuigan about the state of the global wine market, the company's plans to get back into the US and the on-going tribulations at rival Treasury Wine Estates
Earlier this year, the Worshipful Company of Distillers held a lively debate in London on the future of rum. Afterwards, just-drinks spoke to Nick Blacknell, Havana Club's international marketing director for Pernod Ricard, to discuss digital, diversity and the debate's motion “The future for rum lies with connoisseurs not clubbers”.
Spirits firm Beam is now under the control of Japan's Suntory Holdings after a US$16bn takeover earlier this year. So how will this new marriage work in some key global markets? just-drinks' deputy editor, James Wilmore, caught up with Beam Suntory's Asia-Pacific & South America president, Nick Fink, to find out.
Heineken will open its newest African brewery in Ethiopia next month as the brewer continues to expand across the continent. Last week, just-drinks sat down with Siep Hiemstra, Heineken's president for Africa and the Middle East, to talk football, Nigeria and if there's an African Tiger waiting to take on the world.
Kevin Liles, the former CEO of Def Jam Records, now heads up his own multi-industry firm, KWL Enterprises. This includes working as a consultant to stars such as Jay-Z and Mariah Carey, with whom he has just released a line of tea-blend soft drinks. Yesterday (18 June), he spoke to just-drinks about the celebrity tie-ups, how to make the most of new technology and Jay-Z and Carey's love for the beverage industry.
Keith Villa is the founder and head brewmaster of MillerCoors-owned Blue Moon Brewing Company, creator of the Belgium-style Blue Moon beer. During his visit to London last week, just-drinks sat down with the doctor of brewing to discuss quality issues in craft beer and what motivates him to experiment with bacon, peanut butter and chocolate. Villa also made clear why he considers Blue Moon a craft beer despite its corporate owners.
After 18 years in Latin America, Laurent Pillet moved to sub-Saharan Africa in 2011 to head up Pernod Ricard's operations in the region. At the French company's Capital Markets Day this week, just-drinks sat down with Pillet to discuss the past, present and future for Pernod in the region.
Later this year, Shanghai will host the second ProWine China, a sister event to Düsseldorf's ProWein. Here, just-drinks' Andy Morton speaks to head organiser Marius Berlemann to find out how preparations are going for the November show.
Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) last week welcomed its new CEO Michael Clarke. He has already made headlines with his maiden speech to investors today. Prior to Clarke's arrival just-drinks sat down with company CMO Simon Marton at Prowein last month to talk about his appointment and other issues, including a stock write-down in the US and why the days of print advertising may be numbered.
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