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Brontë liqueur revived, repacked & remarketed

Yorkshire drinks expert revives Brontë liqueur with a new recipe targeted at a younger audience as a mixer for cocktails

Sir James Aykroyd has revived Brontë liqueur, a tipple he first discovered about 40 years ago during a business trip to Paraguay, South America.

As a Yorkshireman with strong family connections to the Brontë Parsonage Museum in West Yorkshire, James was determined to purchase the trademark and market the drink himself. Now four decades on, he has managed it – transforming both its look and its taste for a more discerning consumer.

James, who worked in senior roles with Buchanan’s whisky and Martini and Rossi and more recently stepped down as a shareholder and chairman of Speyside Distillers, says: “Back in 1928 my great grandfather, Sir James Roberts, bought the Haworth village parsonage and gifted it to the Brontë Society. Today that building is the Brontë Parsonage Museum and this is something our family is immensely proud of – I still hold the key to the parsonage’s front door.”

While the original Brontë liqueur was honey-based and presented in a ceramic jug, the new-tasting drink celebrates ‘God’s Own County’ with blackberry and sloe and a hint of jasmine.

James and the Brontë Liqueur Co plan to market the drink to a younger audience as a mixer for cocktails, and have already devised a series of recipes, including the Brontë Royale, made from the liqueur topped up with champagne and a Brontë Mule -a refreshing mix of Brontë liqueur, fresh lime and ginger beer served over ice.

The company plans to sell directly to up-market bars and restaurants as well as specialist independent retailers. Contacts with importers in overseas markets have already been made in Scandinavia, Russia, Spain, Japan, UAE, Canada and the US.

A percentage of all sales of Brontë liqueur will be donated to the Brontë Society to ensure that the legacy of the Brontë family endures.

The original Brontë liqueur was packaged in a ceramic jug. The liqueur is now presented in a glass 70cl bottle inside a metallic dark blue box with gold highlights. UK RRP £27 per 70cl bottle.

Pictured: Sir James Aykroyd pictured outside Haworth Parsonage Museum with a bottle of  Brontë liqueur

15 July 2014 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor