Mount Gay had lost relevance with consumers who were “too busy.” They had strong credentials, but were suffering from low awareness. With whiskey’s rise in popularity, manufactured storylines and lifestyle-driven products were flooding the shelves. They needed to find a way to break through the faux-thenticity and channel their 315-year-old legacy.
The original visual identity was made up of what we referred to as a Pirates of the Caribbean kitschy cartoon vibe. It was a look and feel from a time of colonial occupation — first by the Spanish, then the Portuguese, and finally the English. By 1724 there were 55,000 enslaved Africans to 18,000 free whites. In 1816 Bussa's Rebellion was the first of three major slave rebellions that led to the abolition of slavery throughout the British Empire by 1833.Barbados is 91% black. Mount Gay's distillery has been operated by generations of black folks. It has just appointed it's first female Master Blender. The brand deserved an identity respected its history as the oldest continuously running rum distillery in the world. Our goal was to honor the culture of the island rooted in kinship and inspire curiosity in the hearts and minds of the world.