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New flavours and new look for Paddy whiskey

Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard has given its Paddy Irish whiskey a packaging makeover and released two new flavour variants.

An eye-catching new bottle for the core Paddy expression – a three-whiskey blend of pot still whiskey, grain whiskey and malt whiskey – features new embossing on the sides of the bottle while retaining the multi-coloured map of Ireland on the label. Also new is a heritage endorsement flashing The Paddy Flaherty Brand (in homage to the man from whom the brand takes its name), a taste profile on the neck, and a new signature of approval from founder James Murphy.

The new flavour variants have been created with a lighter flavour profile which, coupled with a distinctive bottle design and impactful marketing campaign, aim to “challenge many of the traditional perceptions of whiskey”.

Available initially in the US and France from October 2013, each market will receive flavoured Paddy variants tailored to their differing consumers. The US will receive packaging with a bright modern design, bearing the names ‘Bee Sting’ and ‘Devil’s Apple’, while France will receive a more classic design focusing on the liquid as a spirit drink, bearing the names ‘Irish Honey’ and ‘Spiced Apple’.

An integrated campaign, ‘Sleep When You’re 30’, will be activated initially in the US through a new website - - plus a social media campaign, drinks strategy and advertising to reinforce the brand’s image of “Irish craic”, the Irish word for enjoyment.

Brendan Buckley, global Innovation and category development director for Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard, says: “It’s a very exciting time for Irish Distillers, as Paddy is our first entry into the flavoured whiskey segment.  Of course, Ireland has a long tradition of adding flavours to our whiskeys with drinks like the Hot Toddy and Irish Coffee, so Paddy flavours is rather a natural progression. We are equally excited about introducing more consumers throughout the world to the flavour and quality of Irish whiskey and we are confident that the new look Paddy is primed for success in its launch markets”.

“With flavoured whiskey standing at more than three million cases annually and growing strongly, there is a real opportunity for us to offer something a little different that will appeal to people who already enjoy flavoured whiskey, and also recruit new consumers to the category. The ‘Sleep When You’re 30’ marketing platform will work to engage sociable 20-somethings and encourage them to begin their Irish whiskey journey.”

Dating to 1779, Paddy Whiskey was originally sold under the name “Cork Distilleries Company Old Irish Whiskey”. Things began to change however when a young salesman by the name of Paddy Flaherty joined the company in 1882. Paddy was a larger than life character. As he travelled from pub to pub, he always drew a crowd as it was well known that this most generous of fellows would always stand a round in each pub he visited.  

Over time, Paddy became synonymous with the whiskey and publicans began writing to the distillery asking for another case of “Paddy’s whiskey”. The name stuck, so much so that in 1913, Cork Distilleries Co. officially changed the name to Paddy Whisky. And thus 100 years ago, the Paddy brand was born.

8 October 2013 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor