There’s something called a ‘Breakthrough Innovation Group’ at the Pernod Ricard offices, and it has come up with a novel way to enjoy cocktails at home.
It’s called Project Gutenberg, which is a prototype that the company says will ‘aim to reinvent the at-home cocktail experience’.
The idea is that you have a ‘library’ of spirits to hand, complemented by an app for your phone or tablet that demonstrates how to make a multitude of cocktails for family and friends. It’s a bit like Nespresso for spirits drinkers, in that the library is something you stock up via mail order. The app will even tell you when one of your ‘library items’ needs to be replenished (you can’t see through them, you see).
“With Project Gutenberg, we are utterly committed to the conviviality of the future: an experience that is connected, entertaining, tailored and responsible,” said Alain Dufossé, MD of the Breakthrough Innovation Group. “We are still only at a very early stage of the project, but the potential of dedicated products, services, personalised offers and experiences is infinite.”
I like the idea, and wonder how it’s taken so long to happen. The Nespresso model of mail order coffee not only reinvigorated ‘premium’ coffee marketing, it helped the brand underline years of success in the coffee market and sent a message to the high street that life goes on, in whatever shape or form.
If Project Gutenberg is successful, will Pernod Ricard roll out the home experience onto the high street, where you can grab a quick cocktail in a cafe-style environment while browsing the company’s complete range of spirits? Perhaps not – bars will die hard. But you never know.
One thing’s for sure: innovation like this may sound the death knell for the wonky table full of bottles. I wonder what Margot and Jerry would think?