Same but different was the name of the Hall where many craft spirits were gathered at Prowein this year. The “Same but different” Hall welcome new trends,, or innovations in the wine and spirits world at Protein since 2015. And this year it was “craft”. 

There were still many brands (think cognac) in the French Hall. If you were into spirits this year, better have brought good running shoes to go from one hall to the other, even if anyway this is the only way to survive Prowein. A lot of water and good shoes.

But the question is: How was it? Not Prowein 2018 as a whole, but the focus on spirits. Hum. Same but different. Hum.

What I liked about the presentation was the rather large booth every exhibitor was having as his or her disposal (I wonder how much they were charged) and yes the selection was interesting, from Sasse Brennerei to Dr Jagla’s Elixirs or the old Ferroni’s spirits.

But. There is a but. Or at least many questions.

Why were those beer or cider more craft than other was of course not explained ? What made those products crafts let aside that they introduce themthelves as craft ? What have the reactivation of old spirits recipes by Guillaume Ferroni to do with Danish Liqueurs ( producing over 100.000 bottles a year? We do not even know if craft has to do with scale? a process? being handmade?
But who wants to address the question of crafts seriously in the the temple of brands and the industry? Probably no one. 

Why were craft beer, cider, winebeer (yes that exists,  this is no typo, see pictures below) or artichoke’s liquor and cognac all under the “craft” poster though ? Do they really share public or purpose? 
No explanation seen or read.

Why was this hall rather dark and with loud music ? Is craft synonym for partying hard? This is still unclear to me. Was it a subtle way to illustrate craft is the same (this is all about alcoholic beverages after all) but different (we are dark and loud as opposed as non craft which is light and more prone to silence?) ?

Craft is indeed strong in the industry. So it is easy to understand why a trade fair want to make sure they cover the topic. Does that serve craft? Nothing is less certain.

This said, I’d like to slide show some of my highlights.

#Cognac keeps getting more accessible


A booth with three producers. Two Cognac and one Armagnac. Traditions but fresh packaging and techniques. Really nice highlights of the day, specially Fanny Fougerat great Cognac d’auteur series.
Website of Fanny Fougerat:

# Palinka is an overlooked category that worth exploring


The first question is of course: what is Palinka ? Palinka is a protected denomination of origine since 2004, and refers to specific type of fruit brandies in Hungary. An overview with everything to know about Palinka is accessible here.
Intense taste and the most welcoming booth with passionate individuals. thank you Edit Szöllösi, I look forward to come to Budapest and discover further.

#Guillaume Ferroni keeps innovating while looking back

Here he was showing me old recipe book, actually the book in question was written (written in all the sense of the term) 8 years after the French revolution. Fascinating.
Check by yourself here:

# Sake and japanese alcohol were there in force

Picture      Picture      

# Wine and beer or the hybridization of alcoholic beverages keep taking new forms!

Picture      Picture        

Twice the same concept of wine beer but different process.
The “original wine beer” is produced in Chile by wine makers. Hops is soaked into the blend of three wines (Chardonnay among others).
For the New Zealandese wine hopper, it is actually a bland of IPA and Sauvignon Blanc.   Verdict?
To be honest I have difficulties to appreciate beer. But the New Zealandese concept was tastier, more length and aromatics.

# Kitsch is always there at Prowein