Even though it’s obviously a terrible idea, who among us can honestly say that they’ve never been tempted to eat a laundry capsule? It’s probably dangerous and definitely disgusting, but there is something alluring about a boxful of vibrant, squidgy, snack-sized squares. Maybe that’s why so many idiots have at some point chowed down on Tide Pods.
Most food and drink companies agree that making your product look like detergent is generally inadvisable. Even legitimately horrible soapy sweets like Parma Violets tend to steer clear. However, judging by news from this week. Scottish distillery Glenlivet are not most food and drink companies. In fact, they may well have more in common with Gain than they do Glenmorangie.
To incredulous cries from a whisky community that gags when anyone asks for ice, Glenlivet have decided to introduce a bit of 21st century tech into their nearly two-century old product. Using a casing created from seaweed extract, the company has unveiled their new “Capsule Collection” - a range of bite-sized, biodegradable podules that provide an “instant burst of flavour,” from “one of nature’s most renewable resources.” Yes, they look like Persil.
According to an official announcement, provided by Miriam Eceolaza, director of The Glenlivet:
"As a brand that celebrates originality, we are always looking to break the conventions that have determined how single malt Scotch has historically been enjoyed. The Glenlivet Capsule Collection does exactly that, and we're excited to see how people react when they try our glassless cocktails. Our founder, George Smith, always went against the grain, bucking tradition and doing things differently. The Glenlivet Capsule Collection continues his pioneering spirit today."
In order to create the unusual capsules, Glenlivet partnered with pioneering London-based bar Tayer + Elementary. The resulting collection features three different flavours of capsules, all of which are currently available as an amuse-bouche at London Cocktail week. It may be unusual, but it’s certainly a striking way to start an event.
The capsules themselves have been created by sustainable packaging startup Notpla. In a statement released after the Glenlivet collaboration became public, company Co-founder and Co-CEO Rodrigo Garcia Gonzalez revealed, “At Notpla we want to create original solutions for how to serve and consume drinks, and The Glenlivet is a brand that is looking to do just the same." If the capsules prove a success, maybe they won’t be the last.