RSS Feeds

Advanced search

You are in:


Micro distilleries to produce a global brand

A new Pernod Ricard brand, Our/Vodka, claimed to be the first global vodka with local roots, is set to redraw the vodka map. After a successful introduction in Berlin, Our/Vodka will open micro distilleries with selected partners in 11 cities across the US, Europe and Australia.

Our/Detroit will open this summer, with Our/Seattle, Our/New York, Our/Amsterdam, Our/Los Angeles and Our/London opening later in the year. Our/Austin, Our/Miami, Our/Nashville, Our/New Orleans and Our/Melbourne will follow.

“Finding the right partner in each city is crucial. Since we hand over the responsibility of running the local brand and business to them, it has turned out to be our most critical task. In fact, we only team up with people who we could see ourselves spending holidays with,” says Åsa Caap, founder of Our/Vodka and former innovations director at Pernod Ricard.

“Our/Vodka does not have much in common with other spirit brands. In every city, we partner with local entrepreneurs who love their city – and together, we open boutique distilleries with a grass roots approach, that represents the local community. The distillery in New York, will double as a tasting room, shop and event space, while the Detroit distillery will partner with local organisations for events and communal forums.

Jonas Tåhlin, VP global marketing at The Absolut Company, the mother company of Our/Vodka adds: “When this project was first introduced to me, I didn’t think it was something we should get involved in. Pernod Ricard is a large company, and Our/Vodka is unlike everything we’re good at. At the same time I was very attracted to the idea. It reminded me of 1979 when Absolut challenged every convention in the vodka market. Now we’re doing it again, and it feels perfectly right.” He says.

Our/Vodka is made with the same recipe, but every distillery will use ingredients sourced as local as possible. This means that each city not only lends its name, but also a specific local character to the vodka.

The local partners will market the vodka in their own fashion. “This is about building a unique business in each city: Our/Berlin is run by fashion people, Our/Detroit by three social entrepreneurs, and Our/New York by skate and bike aficionados. Of course they will end up differently, and that’s the beauty of it”, says Kalle Söderquist, creative director for Our/Vodka and partner at the Swedish agency Great Works.

Our/Vodka comes in a small bottle with a crown cap. It was developed by a small group of entrepreneurs and ended up as a start-up project under the umbrella of Pernod Ricard. It is a unique concept for marketing and distributing vodka and it was initiated by Åsa Caap and co-created with Kalle Söderqvist, Mattias Nyström, Ted Persson, Ola Persson and Mårten Magnusson from the Swedish agency Great Works, as well as Vincent Hoarau from the Pernod Ricard Research Center.

Launch schedule

Our/Detroit will open in Southwest, Detroit in June 2014. The team will partner with local community organisations to host events at the distillery. Local partner: Kate Bordine, Sara Aldridge and Brandi Keeler. Kate is currently the executive director of a non-profit organisation, Ponyride, where she develops platforms for creative and social entrepreneurs to scale by providing affordable studio space. Sara has had the opportunity to get her hands dirty in a wide realm of Detroit’s creative and professional employment endeavors. She was involved in the urban agriculture non-profit, the Greening of Detroit, and she is one half of the all female DJ collective dubbed Nothing Elegant. Brandi is an art director involved in Challenge Detroit, a revitalization initiative aimed at attracting and retaining talent to live and work in Detroit. She looks forward to leverage the Our/Detroit brand for entrepreneurship and relevant community engagement. Contact:

“Our/Detroit will build a stage for local voices. We will be authentic to the cultural fabric and we will be a contributor for revitalization in Detroit” says Kate Bordine.

Seattle partners will soon be announced. The distillery will be located on 1836 Market Street in Ballard, Seattle, and will be ready for launch in September 2014. Contact:

Our/New York
, the first distillery in Manhattan since the 1920s, will open in November 2014. The micro distillery will double as a tasting room, shop and event/gallery space. Local partners: Dave Ortiz and Kevin Carney, founders of Dave’s Wear House, a lifestyle store with an eclectic mix of products from bikes and skateboards to sneakers and jeans. Dave’s Wear House has planned, organised and hosted some of the most innovative events in the community over the last two years. Co-founders Dave and Kevin frequently enlist local nonprofits along with major brands and taste makers to create profitable partnerships while giving back to the community and having a bunch of fun. 

“Our/Vodka is interesting because it isn’t based on superficial ideas, it’s real people that are from the city that any person can relate to. It’s not a celebrity endorsement which to me has been done and is very transparent,” says David Ortitz. “The other cities are like our brothers and sisters, we are all different but we have the same DNA. What we envision for our city is to tell OUR story and to grow a brand that New Yorkers can identify with.” Kevin Carney of Our/New York and Dave’s Wear House.

Our/LA, Our/Amsterdam and Our/London
 partners will soon be announced and launches are scheduled for late 2014. Our/Miami, Our/Melbourne, Our/Austin, Our/Nashville and Our/New Orleans
Launches are scheduled for 2015. Contact:

Our/Berlin opened up at Am Flutgraben 2 in Treptow, Berlin in March, 2013. Run by local entrepreneurs Jon Sanders and Pauline Hoch, the tiny distillery is a bar, an event space and liquor store.
 For more info, visit Contact:

The Absolut Company has the worldwide responsibility for the production, innovation and strategic marketing of Absolut Vodka, Malibu, Kahlúa, Wyborowa, Luksusowa och Frïs. Absolut Vodka is the world’s fourth largest premium spirits brand. Every bottle of Absolut Vodka is produced in Åhus, southern Sweden. Malibu is the number one rum-based coconut spirit in the world, sold in more than 150 countries. Kahlúa coffee liqueur is the world leader in its category. The head office is located in Stockholm, Sweden. The Absolut Company is a part of Pernod Ricard, which holds one of the most prestigious brand portfolios in the sector.

3 April 2014 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor