Have you heard of the new rum in the market yet? Well, it’s not in the Indian market as of now and you may have to take a trip to a foreign land (read US, UAE or some countries in Europe) or fly via Bangalore airport to get hold of a bottle of this premium dark rum. Or, you could request Gautom Menon, the rum aficionado, and producer of Wild Tiger Rum to arrange a bottle for you. In the end, it will all be worth it.
I have known Gautom Menon for a few years now, since the time he was involved in his father’s liquor manufacturing business in Kerala. Menon always had a special inclination towards rum and he wanted to create a premium dark rum which could become a proud representation of the ‘spirit of India’. When we met for the first time to talk about Wild Tiger Rum, he said, “Every country in the world have their own national spirit, but it’s strange that, in our country where a major part of the spirit consumption is from rum category and given the fact that we also make most of our whiskies from sugar cane molasses, also the base for rum, we haven’t thought about making rum as our national drink!”
He added, “Wild Tiger Rum serves two purposes. First, it is a true #MakeinIndia story. Though the draconian laws, taxes and regulations in the country have forced us to take the route of Amrut Single Malt- produced in India but launched first in the international market and then in India-I am positive about the product creating the same impact in the domestic market soon. Secondly, it’s the label, which is very close to my heart”. As a part of its core CSR policy – The company donates 10% profits towards Tiger Conservation in South India where they work with other established wildlife conservation societies and with prominent Tiger experts.
One of the most distinctive aspects of the WILD TIGER’s packaging is – just as no two Tigers share similar stripes, the stripe design of the each bottle are distinctive and ensures that no two bottle designs are alike, making each bottle unique to its owner or gift recipient, by this virtue it makes it a default special edition of sorts and at an affordable price point.
The replica Tiger Claw that adds elegance to the overall packaging symbolises “No Fear”, according to ancient Indian mythology.
WTR has already grabbed a special prize for its unique packaging at an industry event. Menon says, “Innovation and Social Responsibility are at the heart of everything we do at Wild Tiger and we approached this with a mantra “Think out of the bottle”. Almost all packing elements are made using recycled materials to reduce the impact on our environment.
And when it comes to the liquid inside the bottle, Menon takes extra caution about that too. “The flavour profile was finalised after long deliberation, tastings with master distillers, taking feedbacks from many international rum masters. Wild Tiger is India’s first rum to be produced from a blend of molasses and cane spirit, giving it gorgeous aromatic notes and depth in flavour”, he said. WTR is produced in Menon’s family owned distillery in Kerala.
After holding the trade launch in London at the UK Rum Fest where the brand created a big buzz and from the showcasing at USATT in New York in March 2016, Menon is eager to establish the brand in the top Rum markets of the world but with a special focus on Travel Retail. He adds “the exotic blend makes Wild Tiger uniquely delectable or as we like to call it “RUMTASTIC”. The brand is soon to be available in the US by Eastern Liquors INC who will initially introduce WTR in the East coast primarily in the states of NY, NJ, CT and MA by the end of May 2016.“We are also thrilled to announce our partnership with ‘1423’, the
“We are also thrilled to announce our partnership with ‘1423’, the Denmark-based distribution company who will act as an exclusive importer for select countries in Europe, catering to markets in Denmark, Germany, Sweden, Norway and will be adding a few more countries after the initial launch in May. The deal was signed at the recently concluded Paris Rum fest. “Our goal is to have an extensive presence in at least 16 countries by the end of 2016”, given India’s strong ancient roots to the origin of Rum we would like to take an Indian brand to new territories and to un-scaled heights”.
Wild Tiger Rum has also another industry first, having completed listing as the official rum onboard Tiger Airways , the rum will be served on all Tiger Airways flights from July 2016 onwards. This is a first for an Indian spirits brand for onboard sales.
But, what about plans for India? “Well, my ultimate aim is to establish it as a true Indian spirit and for that, I will keep looking for opportunities in India. Maybe soon you will see the tiger roaring in Mumbai,”he concluded without disclosing further.