New releases

Victoria Bitter Xtra hits the shelves

Carlton & United Breweries has made what it describes as “one of its biggest announcements of the past century” for Victoria Bitter, with the release of VX – a 6% ABV twist on the classic VB.

VX will be sold in four-packs of 250ml stubbies, which contain 1.2 standard drinks each. VX uses the same ingredients and retains the distinctive flavour of the original, but with a bolder and more intense taste.

Brand Director Sarah Wilcox said: “The VX launch comes as VB enjoys a resurgence, after beer lovers reverted to trusted
brands during COVID.

“We’ve launched VX to give beer lovers a slightly bolder and more intense version of the great VB taste they’ve enjoyed for generations. It is brewed to be enjoyed with mates and to offer more choices of great-tasting beer for various occasions.”

VX will feature a new red, white and black logo and the slogan ‘For a Hard Earned Night’.

“Australians are increasingly moderating their alcohol consumption – with almost 30% of Carlton & United Breweries’ beer sales now, zero, low and mid-strength beers.

“However, higher-alcohol beers are increasingly popular in the craft segment, and we think there’s a market among traditional beer lovers who also want bolder and more intense flavours. It’s all about choice.

“We didn’t want to mess too much with the iconic VB recipe for the new VX. Beer lovers with long memories will remember we did that once before and we definitely won’t be rushing to do it again! This time we are listening to our consumers and giving them what they want.”

VX will be on sale at major bottle shops from this week and will retail for $16 (RRP) for a four pack and around $60 (RRP) for a slab of stubbies.

Higher ABV a winner for Beam Suntory

Beam Suntory last month celebrated 24% growth versus the pre-pandemic in its 2022 full-year results, describing “explosive growth” of higher ABV -196 RTDs in Australia one of the key highlights.

Double Lemon has been the number one RTD launch in the past five years, according to IRI data (Coles/Indies to 19/06/22).

The name -196 is a reference to the intense production process involved in creating the product. Remember when you witnessed the explosion of liquid nitrogen in science class at school? Beam Suntory uses exactly that technique: a whole lemon frozen in liquid nitrogen at a temperature of (you guessed it) -196°C, then pulverized and soaked in alcohol – creating an extreme lemon drink.

The premix blend is made from shochu, vodka, soda, and lemon, and uses Suntory’s unique “Freeze Crush Infusion Technology”, which freezes and crushes real fruit to capture every bit of natural lemon flavour.

“Aussies who’ve travelled to Japan show a genuine love for one of its biggest and fastest-growing RTD brands and cult favourites and we know that the love will be fulfilled by -196 Double Lemon,” said Beam Suntory Director of Innovation, Kay Oh when the drink was released in 2021. “We also foresee growth via newcomers to the Japanese-style premix category with the launch of this popular drink.

“We want Aussies to feel like they’re enjoying the real deal straight from the fridge of a convenience store in Tokyo. The product is unmistakably Japanese, and we have no doubt that it will make waves for young Aussies looking for a high ABV (6%) drink that delivers next-level refreshment.”

Categories: New releases