Die-stamping is not known for being an edgy or alternative print technique, but it’s proven to be an award-winning choice for the buccaneering rum brand Pirate’s Grog, which needed a distinctive feel for its special 13-year-old blend.

Distillers and travel-lovers Gareth and Beth Jones brought the golden rum home from their travels to Roatán, a small Caribbean island situated 60km off the coast of Honduras and have created a brand for a growing crew of like-minded fans, who love the rum for its flavour, but also its contemporary, rebellious style and values.

Marketing and events director Beth Jones explains:

“The whole experience of drinking our rum matters to us. We try to put our personality in a bottle, and we spend most weekends in an event tent dressed as pirates, bringing the pirate-life to others! For our 13-year-old rum, we wanted something really special, so we decided to try working with a specialist printer. We love traditional techniques and try to collaborate with local London businesses.”

Searching for a traditional approach for their edgy, contemporary brand, the duo approached Baddeley Brothers to bring their intricate bottle labels to life. Pencil in hand, they sketched elements of the design and worked with their designer to bring each component together in complex and intriguing label designs for the front, back and neck of the bottle.

Using self-adhesive backed Colorplan Ebony 175gsm, Baddeley Brothers die-stamped the labels with two eye-catching golds, Ultra Royal and Ultra Bright. Applied to the traditional crock bottle, which allows the rum to continue breathing and ageing as it is stored, the labels give the blend its authentic and exclusive feel. Pirate’s Grog No.13 gained the award for ‘Best Design Effectiveness’ in the World Drink Awards 2017, as well as an award for the superb taste. To build on the Caribbean experience, Pirate’s Grog No. 13 is also available in a traditional chest with a personalised message.

“I’ve been showing the labels to other printing experts in our industry,” adds Beth, “and they have been amazed by the quality. They’re looking at the labels under a microscope and can’t believe how intricate the print is. You can see pinpricks in the text, which gives it added texture and depth. The bottles look great from afar, and even better up close.”

This passion for quality is shared by Baddeley Brothers’ Director Charles Pertwee.

“These black and gold labels are very striking, and tantalising to touch. Through the hand-drawn elements of the design you can see the love and passion that has gone into making the rum. We share their obsessive attention to detail and are delighted to see how the high standard of the die-stamping has contributed to the effectiveness of the design and helped make it award-winning on a global stage.”

Beth concludes:

“We definitely enjoy working with Baddeley Brothers, we’re now on our fourth run of labels and have not changed a thing!”

Fine Printers London