The makers of popular lout juice Blue WKD are hoping to attract a better class of alcoholic, after building a factory in one of France’s premier wine regions. Renowned for its climate, terroir and exceptional vintners, the new industrial complex delicately sprawls across some 30,000 square feet of this hallowed vine belt.
“Throughout history, people have longed to pay a bit more for big bottles with posh lids on”, explained brand manager Derek Harbinger. “All they need is someone ‘in the know’ to tell them it’s OK to like it.” Harbinger knows the value of tradition, and proudly pointed out that they use only three time-honoured ingredients: sugar-water, food dye and ‘chemicals’.
With a 3-litre capacity and a logo depicting a princess being sick in a bin, bottles of Blue WKD Grand Cru are leaving their mark on the smartest of pavements. Experts recommend the tipple ‘be drunk immediately while standing or laying down’, and it goes well with a Marlborough Light if you want to look like a grown-up.
Harbinger is particularly proud of the packaging. “For some reason, our competitors in the Champagne region haven’t used grey plastic bottles before”, he explained, “and a lot of them are still using corks. We respect that, there’s something very adult about overcoming a deliberately difficult way of opening a vessel. Which is why our bottles have child-proof caps.”
Oz Clarke put away a surprising amount during an upmarket press launch, but only vomited twice, such is the quality of the beverage. To the consternation of the more reserved wine critics present, he was gushing in his appraisal. “The nose is remarkable, like snorting sherbet instead of cocaine, I should imagine”, he quipped. “I’m getting notes of Starburst, Moams and acid reflux.”
It’s that sugary sweetness which has really caught the imagination of the fusty wine community, with everyone agreeing that it’s incredibly easy to drink. “With this cheeky little number, there’s no need to discuss complex tannins or subtle floral tones”, enthused Clarke. “You can pour it down your neck without giving a second thought to the flavour. And I can assure you, it tastes just the same coming back up.”
Non-refundable, I promise not to try and take it back.