Wray & Nephew launches bar school
J. Wray & Nephew Limited has set up a school for bartenders and mixologists, an initiative that is meant to grow brand awareness for products the spirits company bottles and distributes.
"What we've done is to bring a structure and an understanding of our fine spirits to the consumer by having proper instruction, where the purveyors come in to learn and understand the fundamentals of our brands, and, with this knowledge, they can now impart that to our consumers in how they should enjoy our brands," said Managing Director Clement 'Jimmy' Lawrence at Tuesday night's launch of JWN Academy.
Lawrence sees a surge in the local spirits market and wants his share.
"Rising tide lifts all ships," he said. "We're in this industry where we provide enjoyment, entertainment and facilitate the fancies of our consumers. Of course, competition is strong and we're very rabid about it and we make no excuse for that."
An interesting side note is that Nadia Kiffin Green, who was part of the team that developed and delivered the Learning for Life programme at Diageo - which includes a bartending component - is now consumer insights research manager for the Caribbean at J. Wray and Nephew.
At the JWN Academy bartenders, employees of J. Wray and Nephew and even members of the public can participate in courses on spirits and wines. It will also act as a testing lab to develop cocktails and assess trends among drinkers.
The JWN Academy presently has 16 persons enrolled. They are being trained in conjunction with the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at University of Technology, Jamaica.