'The Harlot' - English Charmat 'Fizz'

Tom Cannavan

There will likely be a rush of them, but I've been offered samples of a new one today. I have to say the press release doesn't inspire, but as I am the one that's always banging on about there being a place for all sorts of wines other than the fine and artisan, I guess I cannot complain:

"distinctive brand identity, refined and vibrant flavour and relative affordability"

"sure to become a hit with venues and consumers alike as it launches into the bar and restaurant trade"

"an exciting partnership with model and influencer Portia Freeman"

"available in 75cl and 20-litre keg"

Retail price is £15 for the Brut and £16 for the rose from the one stockist listed (for a bottle, not a keg), but it is mainly aimed at bars I think.


Tom Cannavan

"Hello darling, I bought this because I thought of you..."

I suppose, being a bit more philosophical about it, these sorts of brand-led 'lifestyle' products are what we should expect. The only reason you would make charmat method wines in England was if you wanted to build a brand around a cheaper product aimed at a demographic that is different from the estabslished traditional method customers. Why would anyone try to create something high-end and sophisticated by the Charmat method?

Tom Cannavan

Hen nights and girls night out on the lash in a stretch limo is the sort of target demographic here, I think.

And if that is true, again i don't really 'blame' them for it, but boy is it cheapening the English Sparkling Wine brand that has obvioulsy been nurtured carefully up until now. Even Pommery 'Pop' or Moet over Ice never went that far in Champagne, and it makes Ace of Spades look positively classical.
I can certainly see this brand making good volumes in many pubs and clubs. Good clear branding, nice and playful. Obviously not remotely aimed at any of us so makes sense we all hate it! I imagine the brief was English alternative to Prosecco seeks fun, colourful entry-point into UK market with a bias towards women in their 30-40s.
I think we're just one vague, high energy TV advert away from this being confused with a mainstream perfume. I suspect that's exactly the angle as well.