Alex Kammerling, founder of the more than moreish ginseng-based Negroni-in-a-bottle that is Kamm & Sons, recently unveiled his Kamm & Sons Foundation. Offering £1000 to help give form to the most creative translation of the Kamm & Sons brand, ‘Foundation’ might be a little grand. But there’s still something of the proverbial ‘fresh air’ about the thing.
So what’s so interesting about that? Another booze brand another PR incentive, right? Well, not quite. You see…
Point #1. Drink brands usually focus on either bartenders making drinks (cf. every other cocktail comp under the sun) or else on non-bartending creatives being creative (cf. Karlsson Unfiltered, Beck’s Art Labels, etc.). Mr Kammerling, on the other hand, is playing to one of the bar-trade’s most wondrous aspects: namely that most bartenders have a talent, passion, education or skill in an oft-unrelated secondary activity that they too rarely get to showcase. Dave Arnold, Tony Conigliaro and Alex Kammerling all come from arts backgrounds. Our own Mr Boilermaker, Addie Chinn, trained as a Social Anthropologist. We’ve met barkeep biologists, sculptors, carpenters, painters, dieticians, graphic designers, writers, traders… Hell, we once even worked with a bar-tender who was a qualified rocket engineer. (True story.)
The only requisite of the Kamm & Sons competition is that the result cannot be a cocktail. Nice.
Point #2. At present, Kamm & Sons is still a pretty niche/boutique brand, both in terms of flavour profile and scale of production. It’s doubly wonderful, then, to see this kind of (admittedly pseudo-) philanthropic foundation being launched by such a small brand. And no, the fact that this is essentially just a marketing campaign oddly doesn’t belittle the activity. Would you rather Alex spent that same grand on an entirely vacuous PR stunt or gave some talented individuals the opportunity (and the, let’s face it, often much-needed impetus) to put their heart-and-soul into a project and see it come to fruition?
So, what will become of this ‘foundation’? Who knows. But if it’s anything like the existing Kamm & Sons product and brand, you can be pretty certain it’s going to veer towards the unique. And presumably bright yellow.
Entries for the Kamm & Sons Foundation close July 1, 2012.
See: Difford’s Guide