Malahat Spirits Co. is a San Diego distillery founded in 2012 by three friends who handcraft rum and whiskey in a way that combines the innovation of the 21st century with the tradition of the 20th. To convey their brand’s “spirited” roots, the partners chose the Malahat, a five-masted schooner that was “The Queen of Rum Row” on the California Coast during Prohibition. To find out more about Malahat Spirits, check them out at MalahatSpirits.com.
For their new brand, the Malahat founders have concentrated on quality in everything they do, from custom-designed copper pot still for distilling their spirits, to the embossed bottles into which they pour their distinctive rums. Their challenge was finding a quality label to match the quality of the product the team worked so carefully to achieve, said Antonio Grillo, one of the co-founders.
Malahat and its design team began by visiting Labeltronix in search of a worthy label for their premiere crafted product. The Labeltronix experts suggested a variety of possible label materials. Once one was chosen, the real work began. To show off their products’ unique qualities, the team chose a variety of embellishments and details to the label, including:
• UV spot varnishing
• A unique 3-part die, including a necker label that goes over the cork top
• Utilizing Arctic Shield Bright White Felt material to have the look and feel of an unfinished texture
• Space to add the distiller’s name, bottle number, and batch number
“These embellishments highlighted our craftsmanship in making the rum,” Grillo said.
“Everybody loves our label,” said Grillo. In keeping with the high-end, personalized crafting of the rums, Malahat’s labels are hand-applied. The first distribution is through Young’s Market in 10 Western states. The customers, retailers, and on-premise customers are reacting well to the labels. “They love the actual look and feel, seeing the detail, the spot varnishes, the gloss finishes. It’s a really nice, complex label that fits our product exactly the way it should,” said Grillo.
Grillo and his partners Ken Lee and Tom Bleakley personally sign every label. “We are proud to have a brand that reflect our personalities, our character, and our integrity,” he said.
A spiced rum, from one of their first batches, earned a gold in the 2014 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. For Malahat brands, it certainly seems like the start of something big.
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