They say the best stories start at the pub, and my journey with Tapp’d is no different. Before Tapp’d Cocktails I worked for the UK’s biggest brewery for nearly six years.
I spent all day visiting pubs, bars and restaurants, and I became aware of changes happening in the UK drinks industry. Suddenly a vast array of spirits, soft drinks and mixers brandished every bar. Gin was in and craft was cool, yet there was one area that had yet to see any innovation: Cocktails.
The UK cocktail market is worth over £1BN and is made up of over 10 million UK consumers, yet it’s often hard to get good quality cocktails, and often involves standing in a queue for half an hour, inconsistent quality and overinflated prices. As for making drinks at home, getting the right ingredients, equipment and mess means its often not worth the bother.
My friends James and Luke realised this and thought there was an opportunity to shake things up in the cocktail market. Armed with a passion for quality and flavour, they set out to change things by created a ready to drink cocktail that was as good – if not better – than a freshly made mixologist drink.
The ready to drink cocktail market has historically been made up of carbonated canned drinks, usually flavoured with artificial ingredients and preservatives, which often taste more like a soft drink that a cocktail.
James and Luke didn’t think this was good enough and believed that people deserved better tasting drinks. With a passion for flavour, quality and amazing ingredients, they spent the next twelve months in their mixologist lab – AKA James kitchen – developing and perfecting recipes to create their own range of bar quality bottled cocktails.
Being the good friend that I am, when they said they were tasting cocktail recipes I made sure I was on hand to try any test batches and got to experience first-hand the attention to detail that went into every drink. They worked night and day, and one day invited me around to try my favourite cocktail: Espresso Martini.
As a coffee lover I have high standards for my Espresso Martini’s, so when they served me a drink that was as smooth as velvet, creamy and with the perfect real coffee taste I was blown away and I knew I wanted to be a part of their journey.
In the year that’s followed we’ve gone from testing recipes in the kitchen to building our own 11,000sq ft warehouse, state of the art mixologist lab and tens of thousands of loyal customers across the UK, and growing daily.