Yes indeedy, a bit of misery helps too:
'This obsession about returning the colour of the British passport to imperial blue undermines the arguments of those who claim that the Brexit vote wasn't driven by an urge to turn back the clock.'
Looks like it's worked, lads. Yes it's the, well, navy blue passport for us, back in time we go to real austerity - ration books, bleached white bread ....yum,yum.
Just realised from all your comments that this wondrous new concoction existed.From my favourite inf source Tesco I gleaned:
' Gordon's Premium Pink Distilled Gin was inspired by Gordon's original 1880 pink gin recipe. Crafted to balance the refreshing taste of Gordon's with the sweetness of raspberries and strawberries with the tang of redcurrant. Made using only the highest quality ingredients and only natural flavourings to provide an authentic real berry flavour.
Gordon's Premium Pink Distilled Gin has been created to offer a sweeter and more accessible way to enjoy a gin and tonic. To set the occasion serve in a large wine glass, filled with ice and garnished with fresh strawberries.
For something a little different, try our Gordon's Pink Spritz - mix 2 parts Gordon's Pink with 2 parts lemonade and 1 part prosecco. Serve in a large wine glass filled with ice, garnish with fresh strawberries and raspberries.'
Yo, sounds a blast - that should spice up a cheap drop of prosecco and lemonade at the ladies lunch no end - and all those natural ingredients too (not so sure about the lemonade).
Great stuff, m8. For the lazybones out there, you don't need to slash each sloe you can just put 'em in the freezer in a bag overnight. That'll break the skin, which is what you need to get the colour and flavour out, no worries.
I have a vague memory of making sloe "gin" with some kinda neat basic ethanol rather than gin tel quel. Make sure not to use methanol which will blind you and ruin the Boxing Day meet.
Damsons are a fine alternative to sloes.
LKH on the flybridge or you could buy Gordon's sloe gin
Pick a pound of so of sloes, round about now, or anyway after the first frost. Slash each sloe with a sharp knife and place in an empty clear bottle. Add a pound of sugar, two cloves and a drop of almond essence, and fill the bottle with gin (any old cheap muck will do, don't waste a good one). Leave undisturbed for a couple of days, and then shake vigoursly. The liquid will turn a glorious rich pink colour. Shake every day for 30 days - the liquid will gradually get darker - and then leave for 30 days. It will be delicious by Christmas and perfect for the hipflask at the Boxing Day meet.
I suppose this is the big company response to the craft gin craze, DGE think they are missing out. Would you believe, there is an ft.com video on craft gin, and the Norfolk Club to which I belong and which is so far behind the curve has decided to hold a gin tasting.
I encountered some proferred raspberry flavoured gin a few weeks ago, disappointing it was, but maybe there is a new audience of millenials, chavs et al who think gin is old hat so haven't tried it and are now discovering gin having being seduced by the craft, artisinal hype.
A really cold G&T is one of the best pre lunch aperitifs IMO, and en passant I tried one the other day with the bog standard Schweppes tonic swiftly followed by another with the much touted Fevertree. I was expecting to prefer the Fevertree but no I thought the maligned Schweppes was better.
Speaking of which, at 6pm GMT its time to smite the prune.
"It is not Pink Gin... but merely a gin that happens to be pink - there is a world of cultural and social history between the two."
Absolutely right, m8! Diageo took a lot of stick a couple of years ago for constantly introducing weird flavoured Smirnoffs but clearly have not learned the lesson. It will serve them right if people say the same thing about this gin innovation horlicks.
At the same time it is sometimes the case that one can innovate successfully with an existing brand. A couple of years ago, at the Treatt AGM, they handed out miniature bottles of honey whiskey liqueur. Clearly they were hoping to sell their honey flavouring to big drinks companies. Anyhoo and whatever, that stuff was absolutely delicious. I still have the empty bottle which has a cute little picture of a bee on it [how sad is that?].
"I concur, almost enough to make me ditch the shares..."
And me too... as a confirmed pedant, it really annoys me. It is not Pink Gin... but merely a gin that happens to be pink - there is a world of cultural and social history between the two.
I suppose we should at least credit the attempt at innovation.. even though this effort belongs in the "must try harder" drawer.
I have no DGE shares to ditch, of course, but I feel compelled to reiterate my prevailing "Strong Sell" view - which, to be fair, has probably more to do with the shares being 20% expensive at the current SP (IMHO, of course, as always...)
I concur, almost enough to make me ditch the shares.
I am reminded of Domecq trying to get trendy and putting some weird juices into an amontillado, it got a big thumbs down at a tasting from the visiting wine group I was with and I think they took notice. DGE needs someone on the board or as a consultant to give such ideas and their M&A a reality check, LKH would be the person.
I am not being flippant, note to Ivan, please make him an offer he can't refuse.
Hmmm. I see that Diageo is launching what it calls Gordon's pink gin.
At first I thought:
"Excellent. No need to go to all that tiring business of getting out the Angostura Bitters bottle and shaking it into two stiff fingers of Gordon's; Ivan is doing the heavy lifting for me by combining the ingredients in a single bottle".
However it transpires that he's not using Angosturas (or some commoditised equivalent thereof) ... the feller is using a flavouring of raspberries, strawberries and redcurrants in order to give the stuff a light pink 'blush'. Dear God, is nothing sacred?
Diageo risks making Gordon's a laughing stock with this girlyboy launch. It'll become the Blossom Hill of gin if he's not careful.
"while he's at it get something in place for online shopping like the rest of the grown up world."
Diageo used to have a site called Alexander & James on which they sold various reserve brands at eye-watering prices to people with more money than sense, but they shut it down at the end of January this year.
I wish they had an online scheme whereby one could buy crates of their standard hooch at a sensible discount to the supermarket price. There would be the risk that they'd upset the supermarkets but, hey, that's a risk I can live with.
Likewise Unilever should do the same thing. I'm up for buying deodorant, shampoo, Flora, and mayonnaise by the crate if the price is right, even if, initially, the scheme is only a perk for shareholders.
nimbo - I'll take a good look at Bongo and see how it reads m8.
One other trick up PayPal's sleeve is Venmo -- all the millenials (strange label I know) are using it and it's transaction values jumped from $6.5BN to 8.5BN in a year.
As a peer to peer money transfer with social media facilities it's been a real winner for PayPal and it was cheap as chips when they bought it - relatively speaking I mean.
Ivan could do with it to pay his web administrator as he can transfer the incentive money straight into the web guys account and send him a message to get rid of all the old products off his dire web site. And while he's at it get something in place for online shopping like the rest of the grown up world.
If you get the chance it is worth watching this programme on bbc 2 - billion dollar deals that changed the world - all about payments and PayPal. As far as tech companies go data is the new oil...and payment data is the highest quality data. I might buy some more PayPal. And if you are interested in payments you should look at something called Bango - to suggest they might be the PayPal is a stretch but they are doing fantastic things with direct carrier billing - read the rns regarding amazon japan and if you fancy looking into it the advfn board is a good source of information.
"Personally, if I had to put my entire family's worth into one holding, it would be Unilever, not Diageo... The fisc all over the world tend to attack booze, the stuff is bad for you... whereas ULVR's products are, by and large, either good for you or do little harm."
Well, I think you and Trainspotter both know that putting your family's entire worth into just one stock is foolhardy in the extreme... that said, I sometimes wish I'd put all of mine into those magnificent Vimto purveyors at Nichols about 15 years back. Not that this makes it right...
On ULVR, you perhaps gloss over the Western World's burgeoning obesity and diabetes problems, pivotal factors behind life expectancy rates being already on the way down in the US and now plateauing in the UK, the name but two countries... how long the unforgiving finger of blame gets pointed at excessive consumption of Pot Noodle and ice cream (now there's a two-courser fit for a king...)?
"If I had to pick one holding in the trust that I had to put my entire familys worth into, this is probably the one holding that I would go for."
Well, bully for Nick Train! Personally, if I had to put my entire family's worth into one holding, it would be Unilever, not Diageo.
The fisc all over the world tend to attack booze, the stuff is bad for you, and Diageo are in bed with some pretty unsavoury characters in various countries around the world, whereas ULVR's products are, by and large, either good for you or do little harm. And the company is an essentially decent one from the ethical standpoint, as a result of the Leverhulme legacy.
It's a no-brainer for
LKH on the flybridge and ULVR has a higher yield, to cap it all
Here is the whole text on Diageo. maybe i should up my personal holdings here from 8-10%. Also interested in Man utd...amazing thing about technology and information flow these days - can just copy what the best investors in the world are doing as they do it!
I think Diageo is a wonderful and beautiful company where the core engines of its growth are 200 years old, such as Johnnie Walker and Guinness, said Nick Train of Lindsell Train.
You have global brand recognition and global distribution from these storied brands, which means you have the basis for exceptional profit.
When you add on top of that the gradual but inexorable increase in wealth of citizens on this planet, which is an optimistic view we adhere to, the likelihood that over 20 years more people will drink more Baileys, Tanqueray or Captain Morgan seems to be very high.
Emerging markets are part of that growth. But also there are different ways to look at emerging markets. If a brand has got strong presence in Brazil or Mexico and those people move up to American, that is an area where you have a chance to grow your brands.
If I had to pick one holding in the trust that I had to put my entire familys worth into, this is probably the one holding that I would go for.
games just wanted to say thanks - you posted something about holdings a coupe of weeks ago - anyway the one that caught my eye was PayPal. Saw Nick Train owns it in LTI as well as being terry smiths no.2. So put 3% in there and up 10% already with currency timing.
v - If it was 10% of my fund I'd be describing it as magnificent, not wonderful !!
But to balance that little statement of Nick's, he did register big concerns about capital allocation in his last monthly update -- so clearly he sees some cracks here as well as a few people typing up their concerns on here.
"I decided, on balance, that it meant 800,000 litres EACH."
Yes, sorry, I misread what you said in your initial post on the subject.
Whether it is 800,000 litres each or 800,000 litres in total, it doesn't alter the fact that Casamigos is massively more expensive than Port Ellen and Brora on a "per case" basis and it highlights the fact that Diageo has, for many years, overlooked a screamingly obvious attractive "organic" capital investment and has preferred to engage in sexier, but far less profitable, M&A. Which is largely why I, for one, have sold all my Diageo shares despite my enjoyment of many of their brands.
"you could say, it has helped them to make out like Mexican (or southern Islayan?) bandits when gradually selling off the remaining bottles for the proverbial king's ransom, and perhaps they planned it that way?"
It's possible, I suppose, though I would have thought that the manky few bottles of left over stock of Port Ellen and Brora that they have sold for a king's ransom would have been overwhelmed, in total profit terms, if they had rebuilt the old distilleries and reintroduced the two brands several years ago when the malt aficionados were begging the to do so, thereby selling 800,000 (or 1,600,000) litres a year rather than a once-off couple of hundred barrels.
"maybe no-one told Ivan the sheds were there?"
Certainly, to judge by the length of time it took Ivan to correct the "brands" bit of the website, when he was still showing brands such as Red Stripe and Blossom Hill as owned by Diageo when they had been sold a long time before, it's quite possible that he had no idea about the opportunity which should have been blindingly obvious. Or he may have said "I don't want to be bothered with any capex opportunity involving less than [insert number of klebbies slightly higher than £35 million here]".
It still seems a bit surprising that no underlings were jumpin' up and down and screamin':
"This Brora and Port Ellen stuff is selling for thousands of quid a bottle. OK, yes, we realise that, to a large extent, this is down to the rarity collectors' value but ffs, Ivan, why don't we rebuild the roof, put in new stills and make out like bandits on our home soil rather than faffing around with Indian wide boys, Brazilian campaneros, Hollywood cheesecakes and suchlike M&A stuff?"
If only Ivan had done the Port Ellen and Brora thingy FIRST, ie BEFORE Crassamigos, he might have got away with the Randy Gerbil, Mike Milkmaid and George Clowney deal subsequently, despite its high cost.
As it is there will be many many large shareholders, as well as small ones, who will increasingly be thinking that Ivan is wasting shareholders' money on some of these large and doubtless hugely enjoyable M&A deals.
"I thought EXACKLY the same thing, m8! I agree with you that it's probably 800,000 litres combined, which was why I referred to "just under 100,000 cases" (a case is 9 litres)..."
Apologies if I was similarly obtuse, LKH - I decided, on balance, that it meant 800,000 litres EACH. Based on one article I found which said as much - though who knows whether this was an informed clarification or they just guessed - and on some historical information which suggested that both distilleries used to produce about a million litres a year (give or take). Which is why my calculations (FWIW) assumed 178,000 cases pa. (2 x 800,000, divided by 9). But as you say... wtfdik?!
"I think it's a LOT different. I've never actually been to Mexico... but my impression is that crime is the main industry out Jalisco way..."
I wouldn't be too sure... I've always suspected that anything goes in those barren, godforsaken badlands of southern Islay, where the long arm of the law has never quite extended! And did you never read about the shocking events in a Brora hotel, many years ago, where a gang of well-refreshed revellers broke into the snooker room in the early hours and relieved them not only of a few goodly measures of gin and vodka but also a fine bottle of scotch which had evidently been set aside as a worthy prize for something or other...
Er, no, you probably didn't... as it was never reported (thankfully), and I only know about it as... er.... well... Suffice to say, not one of my proudest moments... but ultimately no-one was hurt (though I still fear the delayed reaction of my liver). But I digress... !
"... if one does already own two iconic brands and the sheds are already sat there just waiting ... why on earth did it take Ivan so long to decide to spend tuppence ha'penny to get the Jocks to start shovelling malt into the boiler..."
It's a good question... you could say, it has helped them to make out like Mexican (or southern Islayan?) bandits when gradually selling off the remaining bottles for the proverbial king's ransom, and perhaps they planned it that way? Or... maybe no-one told Ivan the sheds were there? Such details often fall between the cracks in huge global companies...
"it is slightly unclear whether the "new" Scotch distilleries will produce 800,000 litres each, or combined (I hate badly worded press releases)."
I thought EXACKLY the same thing, m8! I agree with you that it's probably 800,000 litres combined, which was why I referred to "just under 100,000 cases" (a case is 9 litres). But why, in the name of all that's holy, can't the mup pet who puts out the press release make it clear, as you say?
"how different can it be to employ a handful of people in Mexico vs a handful of people in remote parts of bucolic Scotland?"
I think it's a LOT different. I've never actually been to Mexico, though I have the highest admiration for Katy Jurado and Marty Robbins, but my impression is that crime is the main industry out Jalisco way. I would have thought that the arrival of the hyper smooth Ivan with a huge bag of Diageo money would be every Mexican mafioso's wet dream but wtfdik?
"DGE already owns the whisky so the $45m is merely refurbishment capex"
True enough. However, as you imply, if one does already own two iconic brands and the sheds are already sat there just waiting for new pot stills and a few tiles on the roof, why on earth did it take Ivan so long to decide to spend tuppence ha'penny to get the Jocks to start shovelling malt into the boiler, especially when every malt whisky fan in Christendom was beggin' him to do just that? Blimey, the Diageo-owned maltings are RIGHT NEXT DOOR to Port Ellen.
It's money for jam .... Ivan could make the Port Ellen and Brora pot stills out of solid 24 carat gold and still end up with an investment INFINITELY cheaper than Casamigos.
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