48
Beverage Media
February 2013
A
mid a powerful culinary
movement fueled by artisanal-
crafted food and drink,
American farmers are finding
themselves in the limelight, industrious
champions of fresh-from-the-earth local
ingredients. Sidney Frank Importing
Company unveiled American Harvest
Organic Spirit, the first USDA Certified
Organic product in its portfolio, as a
celebration of the American farmer and
of sustainable agriculture. American
Harvest launched in eight states in 2011
and expanded into thirteen additional
states in 2012. The brand is expected to
be available nationally by mid-2013.
Handcrafted in small batches
using a continuous column distillation
process in its Rigby, ID-based distillery,
American Harvest is made with organic
winter wheat sourced from a single
purveyor: farmer Steve Rhodes. “He’s
everything you imagine an American
farmer to be—hardworking, dedicated
and passionate,” points out Julie Byrne,
American Harvest’s marketing brand
manager. “Made-in-America is a major
component of the brand,” she continues.
“Thus far, consumers and trade have
been extremely receptive to our All-
American and organic messaging.” To
complement the Idaho wheat, American
Harvest also uses water from an aquifer
of the sprawling Snake River. At an SRP
of $23.99, American Harvest is quite
competitive for the organic market.
The Alternative Vodka
At first glance, American Harvest may
seem to have a lot in common with
vodka, yet Byrne points out that de-
spite the similarities, American Har-
vest is decidedly different: “It is organ-
ic vodka to which a proprietary blend
of organic ingredients has been added,
creating a truly unique vodka specialty.
It’s a revolutionary way to look at the
vodka category. The addition of these
ingredients results in the distinctive,
smooth, clean and crisp character of
American Harvest.”
Sidney Frank’s long-heralded
association with vodka allowed
the company to explore a different
approach. “We wanted something
that offered a distinct taste, but that
consumers could wrap their arms
around because of the emotional
benefit,” Byrne explains. “American
Harvest is crafted with the same
American values that this country
was built on: integrity, opportunity,
independence, hard work, innovation
and pride.”
Organic Mix
As with any product new to the market,
an emphasis on its mixability is key to
making an impact on bartenders. That is
why Byrne points to American Harvest’s
versatility as one of its biggest assets,
whether the spirit is enjoyed in its most
basic form sipped on the rocks, or in
one of the fresh, organic fruit libations
whipped up by Todd Richman, Sidney
Frank’s corporate mixologist.
When enjoyed neat, Richman
explains, “American Harvest has
an aroma of sweet pastry, lemon peel
and black pepper. The taste is well-
balanced with a creamy mouthfeel
and a long finish.” In terms of mixing,
“Craft cocktails have been using fresh
ingredients since the origin of the
cocktail. As the pendulum continues
to swing toward that on a larger scale,
having an organic spirit is a natural
fit,” Richman says. “American Harvest
has a great taste and texture, which
makes it ideal. In stirred cocktails, the
viscosity is fantastic; when shaken
with fresh juices, it has body and the
unique brand character is showcased in
the drink.”
BRAND
PROFILE
Farm Fresh
Sidney Frank Importing Reaps the American Harvest
BY CARA McILWAINE
2 parts
American Harvest
½ part
mint syrup*
The juice of two tangerines
Squeeze the tangerine juice
into a mixing glass with ice.
Add American Harvest and
mint syrup. Shake and strain
over fresh ice. Garnish with a
slice of tangerine.
*To make the mint syrup, combine
equal parts water and organic white
cane sugar in a blender. Add a large
handful of fresh mint leaves (no
stems) and blend on high speed for 10
seconds. Strain the syrup through a fine
mesh strainer. Keeps for one week.
TANGY
HARVEST
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