Gosnells, the London mead producer, is relaunching as a more premium product following investment from Cubitt House co-founder, Stefan Turnbull .
Founder Tom Gosnell told MCA he was looking to position the honey-based drink as a female-friendly, lighter alternative to prosecco, with a view to exploring bigger volume opportunities at South East pub and restaurant groups.
Previously served in 330ml craft-beer brown bottles, Gosnell said customer research found consumers were drinking the product more like a wine, leading to a decision to serve it in 750ml bottles instead.
The 5.5%ABV beverage is described as like a light cider, and uses Spanish orange blossom honey for consistency of flavour.
It is tank-fermented in the style of prosecco, with the fermentation stopped earlier than typical meads for a lighter, medium dry finish.
Gosnell told MCA: “What came out loud and clear from our customer research is people were drinking Gosnells more like a wine. Our customers are two thirds female and tend to be people who don’t drink beer.
“We fit in nicely with a lower abv alternative. if you were looking to replace a prosecco with something a little lighter, you can use Gosnells for that.
“A lot of people are talking about lower alcohol, and wanting more flexibility to meet customer demand.
“The idea behind this rebrand and investment is to push forward to the next stage and unlock some bigger volume opportunities.”
Gosnell said he was hoping to secure listings in major South East pub groups, such as Fuller’s or Young’s, which would be active across a number of sites.
He said the product was very accessible once people had tasted it for the first time.
He added: “As soon as we do tastings, people are pleasantly surprised. People think it’s going to be weird. It’s not a challenging flavour, you just need get over that barrier and get people to taste it.
“When we started four years ago it was hard. Working hard to raise bar in London. Most people in the trade will now what it is, which makes those conversation easier.”
Gosness said it paired well with lighter dishes such as smoked salmon, quiche, asparagus, an could also be used as lengthener in cocktails, such as with gin, or as an alternative to ginger beer in a dark and stormy.