KahlĂșa taps into the RTD coffee cocktail market

A widget can for a new RTD cocktail from KahlĂșa delivers the smooth, frothy experience of an espresso martini, while can graphics align the beverage with classic Italian espresso bars.

Shades of brown and white—colors synonymous with the overall look of the cocktail—were chosen to decorate the can.
Shades of brown and white—colors synonymous with the overall look of the cocktail—were chosen to decorate the can.

The standard in rum and coffee liqueur since 1936, Pernod Ricard’s KahlĂșa has taken its rightful place in the growing espresso martini market with a new RTD canned cocktail. Quoting statistics from drinks market analysis group IWSR, KahlĂșa Project Lead and Senior Brand Manager Romina Mariano says the espresso martini is now the fourth most popular cocktail globally and is up 3% on category growth. “Thus, we are seeing an increased demand for a high-standard cocktail experience at home and on the go,” she says. “As a result, we developed this product to ensure we could tap into that emerging opportunity.”

KahlĂșa’s Espresso Martini, in a 200-mL can from Ardagh Group, is a smooth, foamy drink that uses nitro-widget packaging technology to ensure the experience of drinking the RTD version “is as authentic as watching an expresso martini being crafted by a mixologist,” says Mariano. “We want to provide that exciting moment for people to relive at home.”

The nitrogen-filled widget is affixed to the bottom of the can. When the can is opened, the nitrogen is released, creating bubbles. Then, when the KahlĂșa beverage is poured, it takes just 20 seconds for the bubbles to produce the classic foamy top of the signature expresso martini, “delivering an unrivalled and multi-sensory experience for consumers,” says Mariano.

The can size was chosen for its consumer convenience and its serving size—it holds the perfect amount of cocktail to fill a traditional martini glass. Graphics were created by Pond Design, a Stockholm, Sweden-based agency that picked shades of brown and white—colors synonymous with the overall look of the cocktail—to decorate the can. Mariano says this gave the product a sophisticated and smooth feel, embodying the classic qualities associated with expresso martinis. “Further, the front reminds you of classic signs in a classic Italian espresso bar to highlight KahlĂșa’s close association with coffee,” she adds.

A 4.5% ABV version of the KahlĂșa Espresso Martini is available in the U.K., in Nordic countries Sweden, Finland, and Norway, and in the U.S.; a 7% ABV variety is offered in Australia and New Zealand. The cocktails are sold both in both singles and in paper-wrapped, four-packs.

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