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General News

Woodford Bourbon Trail

By | General News

This year’s Woodford Reserve Bourbon Trail was launched at The  Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel’s Grill Room in fitting Prohibition-style. The Woodford Reserve Bourbon Trail Bar competition aims to uncover the country’s
best Old Fashioned cocktails.

Bartenders are encouraged to create and present a classic Woodford Reserve Old Fashioned cocktail using sugar, bitters, and garnish of their choice, with the winning creations deemed by a curation of three esteemed judges.

Participating bars in Cape Town include Cause & Effect, Orphanage, Arcade, Swankey, Burger & Lobster, HQ, Socal, Harringtons, Souk, One & Only, The Station and Radisson Granger Bay. Johannesburg participants being: Sin & Tax, Marble, Mesh Club, Gemelli, Saint, Landmark, Mootee, Marabie Club & Hemmingways Bar.

The winning regional Cape Town and Johannesburg bars will go head to head in the national Woodford Bourbon Brawl final, hosted in Cape Town on 27 November 2018, with the winner taking home the award for the National Old Fashioned bartender of the year.

The Woodford Bourbon Trail launch was led by award-winning master mixologist; Marson Strydom, the elegant Woodford Reserve event embraced this Bourbon’s heritage with the sounds of Duke Ellington on the bandstand, blackjack and roulette tables fuelled by ‘funny money’, a photo booth to snap up the best vintage fashion of the night, prizes, and a tasting masterclass.

Highlighting the tradition of fine Kentucky Bourbon, Strydom chooses cocktails to delight the palette. “With this heat, I wanted something lighter, such as the Spirit of Rooibos – a rooibos infused Vodka with Woodford Double Oaked. The drinks needed something a little softer because The Old Fashioned is quite a heavy drink. It’s very complex, as the sugars have more flavours,” he said.

The Woodford Reserve Bourbon Trail has seen judges search for the best cocktail in Cape Town and Johannesburg. This year engages 20 venues in the project. “The The trail is our annual campaign where we look for the best Old Fashioned by bartenders. One of the most creative I’ve seen was called The Clay Age Old Fashioned at Mootee Bar in Johannesburg. It was left for one month in a clay vessel. There are some other crazy ideas – such as The Maple & Bacon Old Fashioned cocktail at Burger & Lobster in Cape Town.”

The Woodford Reserve brand ambassador sang the praises of this handcrafted Bourbon: “Woodford Reserve is one of oldest distilleries in America. It’s one of the only Bourbons to be triple distilled, and also uses copper pot distillation, which gives flavour and character because the copper reacts with the alcohol vapours,” he added.

Offering insight into Woodford Reserve’s versatility, the mixologist showcased the nuances of this Bourbon with cocktails that featured “beautiful body, and a beautiful finish,” to those “a lot bolder with lots of spices.”
Fleshing out the Speakeasy and red-hot jazz ambiance of the prohibition period were Michael Bester on guitar, Stephen de Souza on double bass and saxophonist Marc de Kock. Showcasing the creative roots of award-winning Woodford Reserve, the trio played a repertoire oriented towards the big band swing era, with classic tunes such as Take the A Train.

See more pics here: http://www.rgbc.co.za/events-gallery/

Jack Daniel’s First Thursdays

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Whether you’re headed to a barbeque or hosting your own get-together, Jack Daniel’s smooth sippin’ cocktails will make any friend of yours, a friend of Jack. Plus, you don’t need to be a bartender to try these recipes (they’re that easy to make).

If you happen to be on Bree Street in Cape Town outside Orphanage, check out the Jack Daniel’s mural and on a first Thursday, order a Jack Daniel’s cocktail and receive the second one on Jack.



By | General News

The holidays are best enjoyed with good friends, great food and smooth sippin’ Jack Daniel’s. This summer we’re bringing a taste of Tennessee to South Africa.

As of this December, Jack Daniel’s has launched its Taste of Tennessee campaign to demonstrate the authenticity of Jack Daniel’s being made in one place, Lynchburg, Tennessee & the ways and occasions to enjoy the no. 1 selling whiskey label in the world. Jack Daniel’s will be bringing Tennessee to a location near you.

And in addition, there’s a chance to win a Trip for two to Tennessee. (Ts&Cs apply)

Monthly EVENTS:

  • Aces & Spades (CT) – Jack Daniel’s Friday Night Live every Friday.
  • Tshwanefontein (Pretoria) – Every Last Sunday of the month.
  • Park Acoustics (Pretoria) – Every Last Sunday of the month.

Upcoming events over the festive season.

  • J-Bay Rocks @ The Jolly Dolphin
  • C-Club Cintsa – East London
  • Mdantsane Reunion – East London
  • Billys Beach – St Francis

And stay tuned to the Jack Daniel’s South Africa Facebook page for your next Taste of Tennessee event


Jack Daniel’s, the real reason for breaks between sets…


By | General News

Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey has been showing up authentically in some of the coolest spots and events around the country building long-lasting friends of Jack Daniel’s.

Jack Daniel’s tie to music is a long one. In fact, it goes all the way back to Mr. Jack himself. It seems Jack Daniel had a taste for music. At his home in Lynchburg, he built an upstairs ballroom and kept a Steinway & Sons grand piano and other instruments on hand to entertain folks who happened to visit. Jack knew that music had a way of bringing people together. That’s why it only makes sense that in 1892 he opened two saloons on the Lynchburg town square for live music.

Today, Jack Daniel’s continues to play a part in live music culture. It’s not unusual for a garage or indie band’s photograph to include a bottle of Jack gripped almost like one of the instruments. The music has changed a good bit from back in Jack’s day to now. But one thing hasn’t – the spirit behind the music.

It seems wherever you find good music, Jack is sure to make an appearance. Over the years, his whiskey has even graced the stage with a number of well-known names and many festival stages across the globe. Well, at least, in spirit.

Below are just some of the recurring and past events that Jack Daniel’s have been involved in 2018:


  • Aces & Spades (CT) – Jack Daniel’s Friday Night Live every Friday.
  • Tshwanefontein (Pretoria) – Every Last Sunday of the month.
  • Park Acoustics (Pretoria) – Every Last Sunday of the month.


  • Proof – The American Whiskey Festival (CT) – American Whiskey/ Music Festival.
  • Oppikoppi (Northam, Limpopo) – Live Music Festival.
  • Hudsons (National) Start me Up Saturdays – Live Music activation.
  • Beerhouse (National) Thank Jack it’s Friday – Live Music activation.
  • STRAB Music Festival (Ponta de Malangane) – Live Music Festival
  • South Coast Bike Festival (Margate) – Lifestyle/ Music Festival
  • Fire & Feast Festival (Johannesburg) – Lifestyle/ Music Festival
  • Africa Bike Week (East London) – Lifestyle/ Music Festival.

Jack Daniel’s, the real reason for breaks between sets…

Disaronno Celebrates La Dolce Vita at True Italic

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In celebration of Italian Republic Day, Disaronno paired up with True Italic, an authentically Italian eatery owned by brother and sister duo Luca and Natasha Di Pasquale, to commemorate La Dolce Vita: The Sweet Life. With strong influences from his Italian background, Luca drew inspiration from all around Italy.

“The challenge in creating the dishes for me was exciting,” notes Luca. “I am always looking for inspiration to recreate traditional Italian dishes drawing on modern flavours to create classic dishes with a contemporary twist while still respecting the ‘Italian way’.”

With a burst of flavour on the nose and a taste of almond and marzipan on the palate, Disaronno leaves a long sweetness with a faint bitterness on tongue, making it the perfect ingredient to reimage classic dining room favourites.

Amongst his Disaronno creations was the Disaronno Stracciatella Risotto, a dish traditionally served with mozzarella, Luca was inspired by a Nepalese twist on the conventional risotto which sees white wine being replaced with amaretto.

With it’s almond taste, Disaronno makes for the perfect infusion to any dessert. Luca reinvented the traditional tiramisu, infusing it with the almond taste of Disaronno.

Following a successful launch in June, Disaronno is set to host a succession of secret soirées, taking guests on a flavour journey pairing classic Italian dishes with the unique taste of Disaronno.


By | General News

On Wednesday, 20 November 2018 Chambord® hosted an exclusive pamper party for celebs, A-listers and media at The Bay in Camps Bay. And why? Well,#BECAUSENOREASON.

The guests were welcomed with the eye-catching Chambord® Royale served in a champagne
flute. To highlight the delights of this premium black raspberry liqueur Chambord® also served the guests the Chambord® Margarita Coolers with Herradura, Chambord, lemonade
and lime and a Chambord® Lemonade with Finlandia – ideal cocktails for the summer.

Set under the palms of this seaside strip enhanced the quirky festivities of a sunny day
draped in pink, with its gorgeous views over Camps Bay’s iconic beachfront, The Sandy B
Private Beach Club’s VIP lounge and pool deck was the perfect spot to compliment the
refreshing summer appeal of this all-natrual rasperry liqueur.

Brown-Forman Brand Principal Chantal Canning added,; “Chambord® is a premium, allnatural
black raspberry liqueur whereby every drop is produced at a traditional French
chateau situated in the Loire Valley of France following many of the same traditional
processes. Today, Chambord® continues to inspire versatile cocktail creations around the
world and is considered decadent, flamboyant and a real treat to add to your glass of
bubbly. As we like to say “pink your drink”. But you don’t need a special occasion to enjoy
Chambord®. If you like it, drink it. Why. Because no reason. The Chambord® global mantra
inspires women to live their best life however they choose to. C’est la vie.”

While the berry bliss of Chambord® inspired fruit and flowers galore, pampering for the day
included nail and hair care pop-ups, make up specialists, beauty products and cool
swimwear collections.


By | General News




  • Hendrick’s Gin, together with a select group of partners, have produced a gin cocktail experience to the value of R40 000.00
  • All the partners selected for the project share the core values of the Hendrick’s Gin brand: premium, hand-crafted, and small batch.
  • The partners include Ardmore Ceramic Art, Barker and Quin Tonic Water, and Svalbardi Polar Iceberg water.
  • Only three cocktails will be served, one available to purchase at each of the following venues as of 1 November; Mount Nelson in Cape Town, Oyster Box in Umhlanga, and Marble in Johannesburg.

To celebrate the start of the Gin O’Clock summer season, the world’s most unusual premium, small batch, and hand-crafted gin, Hendrick’s Gin has created South Africa’s most peculiar and expensive cocktail experience, valued at forty thousand rand each. The cocktail experience was created in conjunction with other unusual, premium, small batch, and hand-crafted brands including Ardmore Ceramic Art, Barker and Quin Tonic Water, and Svalbardi Polar Iceberg Water. Only three of these cocktails will be produced and will be available to purchase exclusively from the Mount Nelson in Cape Town, the Oyster Box in Umhlanga, and Marble in Johannesburg from 1 November.

Shaun Stemmett, brand manager for Hendrick’s Gin South Africa says that this programme is a perfect opportunity to showcase the unusual & premium nature of Hendrick’s Gin. “Our partners are simply among the best in their fields; Ardmore Ceramic Art has produced exceptionally beautiful and unusual artworks that are sought after the world over, Svalbardi Polar Iceberg Water is the world’s best and purest water, extracted from the glaciers of Norway and carefully bottled and shipped around the world, and Barker and Quin produce unique South African tonic water.”

Stemmett further explains that the creation of the cocktail not only celebrates the core values of the brand – unusual, premium, small batch, and hand-crafted – but also launches the Hendrick’s Gin O’Clock summer season programme. “This summer we are once again bringing the Hendrick’s Gin O’Clock experience to South Africa, with 40 bars and restaurants participating, serving a selection of Hendrick’s Gin cocktails. In addition, we have also brought back the much-loved Hendrick’s Gin Tea Cup Gift Pack. The gift pack is available from 18 October is all leading liquour outlets and features three different tea cup designs for those gin connoisseurs to collect. The Hendrick’s Gin O’Clock summer cocktails are relatively easy to prepare and delicious to enjoy at home, so why not enjoy them in the tea cup of the gift pack.”

The Something Marvellously Unusual cocktail experience comprises primarily of the elixir and is served in one of only three bespoke and one-of-a-kind ceramic goblets, created by the world renown ceramic art manufacturers Ardmore Ceramic Art and inspired by the animal illustrations found within the Hendrick’s Gin brand. The liquid is a multi-layered sensory expedition. Hendrick’s Gin is mixed with a vermouth that has been hand crafted using a Klein Constantia Vin De Constance wine, a variety of rare and expensive botanicals and spices, and fortified using Hennessey XO. This is then combined with a specially crafted batch of tonic water made by Barker and Quin that was developed specifically for this cocktail. This tonic water comprises of a variety of South African botanicals, and made using Svalbardi Polar Iceberg Water the purest water in the world. The tonic water is housed in specially crafted tonic water bottles that were created by Consol to perfectly compliment the Hendrick’s Gin bottle. Only twelve of these special edition and collector item bottles were created for the Something Marvellously Unusual Cocktail experience.

The “Something Marvellously Unusual” cocktail recipe was developed by our master mixologist Marson Strydom, and comprises a variety of ingredients that are both unusual and rare. The cocktail is an extremely unusual take on the Hendrick’s and Tonic, with various builds that makes it exceptional; the cocktail’s flavour notes are Rose and Cucumber, the two flavours perfectly infused into Hendrick’s Gin, but further includes the flavours of Wild Fig and Pine Needles, that takes the flavour to a place that cocktails have not yet explored.

“While the Something Marvellously Unusual cocktail experience will only be enjoyed by less than a handful of people, the Hendrick’s Gin official 2018 summer cocktail selection will be available in all participating bars and restaurants. These cocktails include the ever popular and always unusual Hendrick’s Gin and Tonic, The Hendrick’s Gin Buck, The Hendrick’s Orchard Collins, and the Hendrick’s Gin Mule. While these cocktails certainly won’t cost you forty thousand rand, once you’ve tasted them, you would probably agree that they should,” concludes Stemmett with a wry smile.

Belvedere Vodka X Laolu

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Belvedere Vodka, the first super-premium vodka, is excited to announce its global partnership with celebrated visual artist, musician, and activist Laolu Senbanjo, including a striking limited edition bottle available in-store globally August 2018. With an artistic vision to reveal the beauty within each of his subjects, the new limited edition bottle visually brings to life Senbanjo’s interpretation of the complexity, nuance and character of the Belvedere liquid.

A Brooklyn-based Nigerian-born performance and visual artist, one of Senbanjo’s main artistic mediums is the skin; he is best known for his body-painting featured in Beyoncé’s Grammy Award-winning visual album, “Lemonade.” He’s graced the cover of the Washington Post, and has been featured in The New York Times, The Guardian, Vogue, BBC, CNN, and NBC. In addition to Beyoncé, he counts artists including Alicia Keys, Swiss Beatz, Seun Kuti, Tony Allen, Alek Wek, and Danielle Brooks among his collaborators.

Senbanjo applies his mantra, “Everything is My Canvas,” to mural designs, fashion partnerships, live art events and installations, and now to the new limited-edition Belvedere Vodka bottle. The first Belvedere bottle with high-quality full-wrap sleeve technology features a flowing design with sharp edges that represent the water and rye working together to produce dimension and taste. Subtle skin-sense texture, which reacts to UV lights, is used to bring another sensory component to the bottle. The charcoal coloring and distinct shapes create complex, story-rich designs, which draw heavily from his Yoruba heritage.

“When Laolu paints a subject, each design is unique to what he believes depicts their inner beauty. This phenomenal message is seamlessly in line with our mission to reveal the unexpected beauty in life,” said Rodney Williams, president of Belvedere Vodka. “Also as a social advocate and former human rights attorney, Laolu’s philosophies align with our commitment to community and creating positive action in the world; in this case, the program supports (RED) and the Global Fund to fight HIV/AIDS in Africa, a mission we’ve been supporting for 8 years.”

“As an artist I get to share my soul with people around me, my environment and the world and I’m able to channel my experiences like my journey as a human rights attorney and as a Nigerian” said Laolu Senbanjo. “I developed a concept that I call ‘The Sacred Art of the Ori’ which is based on Yoruba mythology. It’s about the connection between me as an artist and my subject, and expressing that on the canvas. The Belvedere bottle design came from that inspiration as well as doing a lot of research about what Belvedere is at its core, like the Polska rye and the pristine water. The bottle is an amazing blend of my art and bringing to life what Belvedere stands for – and I get to be a part of giving back to society, which means a lot to me.”

Belvedere Vodka and Laolu will reveal the limited-edition bottle at events planned for at New York Fashion Week, in Nigeria and South Africa from September. Limited edition bottles now available.

Hennessy named one of S.A.’s top spirit brands

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Hennessy, the global leading cognac, was awarded a notable accolade as the number two Consumer Alcoholic Spirit brand in the Sunday Times Top Brands 2016 survey*. The brand has leapt from last year’s sixth position. Hennessy is confident that its success is owning to its consistent marketing and sustainable business approach that has established the international luxury brand firmly in the hearts and minds of African consumers.

Hennessy is one of a few internationally renowned deluxe brands to enjoy major success in Africa and deep-rooted loyalty from their consumers. Despite starting out in a market where scotch and brandy were the traditional spirit of choice – and cognac as a liquor category was non-existent – Hennessy is currently the number one selling cognac in Africa, and a leader in the premium spirits category realising consistent double-digit growth over the past 10 years.

Pascal Asin, Managing Director: Africa and Middle East at Moët Hennessy, who has led Hennessy’s success in Africa for over a decade said: “It’s more than just a business model – it’s about transmitting the legacy of an iconic brand in such a way that the local market adopts and welcomes it as their own.”

Hennessy’s focus is always on building relationships and partnering with the local market to understand their consumer intrinsically.

“While many African consumers are the well-established high net worth individuals, the majority of Hennessy drinkers are young up-and-coming entrepreneurs,” explains Asin.

It’s this youthful face of the luxury African consumer that led to Hennessy’s Never Stop. Never Settle. marketing campaign. The powerful commercial speaks to the heart of the African consumer who is on a journey to success: the man whose ambition and inner drive will steer him to realise his full potential, and go beyond.

“In every country we have a presence in, we focus on understanding our consumer base to best maximise our marketing strategy, all the while remaining true to the brand’s 250-year-old heritage,” explains Michael Ellingworth, brand manager of Hennessy Cognac in South Africa.

“In order to continue our positive growth, and be further embraced by South Africans we must remain relevant. This means we must plan for the future, even though it is often unpredictable, and turn adventure into opportunity. We must continue to stay ahead of the game and set our own course: Be relentless, we will never stop, never settle.”

*The Sunday Times Top Brands 2016 used a total sample of 3500 in this year’s survey; with 2500 interviews in metro SA and 1000 interviews in non-metro areas of South Africa. The survey methodology measures the brand’s standing in both the market place and in people’s minds.