Those who do not learn from (marketing) history are destined to repeat it. Inexplicably, the folks over at Bacardi just announced a floral themed spirit made by women for women. Yes, the concept is exactly like the past efforts by competitors to leverage stereotypes— the same efforts that were widely derided as foolish at best and flat out sexist at worst.
Press materials touted Bacardi’s Plume & Petal as “the first spirit design [sic] by women, for today’s modern woman, to be enjoyed with other woman.”
Plume & Petal is specifically a flavored vodka. Three expressions were released: Cucumber Splash, Peach Wave, and :Lemon Drift. The marketing hyped a low 20% ABV and 83 calorie servings.
“For time savored, not spent, Plume & Petal is a premium, gluten-free vodka infused with delicate, natural fruit, botanical and tea with just a hint of honey,” read the official description. “Perfect poolside, at brunch, or for evenings with friends, enjoy Plume & Petal as a refreshing spritz with club soda, an easy punch, or even easier, on ice.”
Of course, past attempts to develop products based on stereotypes produced epic fails. Consider, Johnnie Walker’s 2018 ‘Lady Walker’ debacle. #SpoilerAlert: Women who like whisk(e)y just like, you know, the same whisk(e)y as everyone else.
In a great piece of satire for the Washington Post, Maura Judkis shreds the campaign. “As I am sure you know, women only consume wine spritzers and vodka-based drinks, like Cosmopolitans. I love a good cosmo with my girls! (I have watched every episode of “Sex and the City” three times. I am a Charlotte.),” Judkis jabbed. “How could I possibly know anything about scotch and bourbon and whiskey, drinks that are exclusively for men? I have no idea how they are made or what they’re made of, but I suspect the ingredients include testosterone and beard oil.”
If you must sample this syrup, Plume & Petal is widely distributed nationwide. 750ml bottles retail for about $20.