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Baldoria Vermouth – Story of Success from Rory Shepherd & Ben Cooper

Who stands behind the idea to create craft vermouth?

The idea stemmed from our love of vermouth and our desire to create something new. We have 2 bars and a restaurant in Paris that are successful and have received multiple awards for their creativity. We could have continued to open more but wanted to find something new with a more global reach and explore new lines of creativity. We created a new company called ERNEST which is the mother brand and logistics for Baldoria and all future products we plan to release.


How long did it take you to launch the brand – from the idea till the ready product?

We started the project in 2016 and launched our core range in March 2019 in France and Italy.


Why did you choose the category of vermouth for craft production?

We’ve always had a love for fortified wines, we love the diversity and range of vermouth, its possible to go in so many directions. Some of these directions had yet to be explored and we felt we had the skill set to go down new paths but still respect the tradition. Vermouths popularity is growing, people are starting to understand it more and through our knowledge of bars and understanding the market we saw a growth in interest.


Why did you choose the Argalà distillery as your manufacturer?

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We’ve loved Argalà’s attitude for a long time. What we created was a collaboration that we couldn’t not do! Their skill set and knowledge of Piedmont’s plethora of ingredients worked well with our vision. 


Who are your Master Distiller and Master Blender?

Piero & Enrico head up our production. Myself & Ben Cooper are heavily involved with every batch tasting and decision.


What are the wine bases for Baldoria Vermouth and why were chosen these grape types?

Chardonnay is used throughout our core range and the Rosso has a splash of Nebbiolo. We use Chardonnay because it is light but characteristic, it complements the rest of the ingredients but also gives it a back bone. Nebbiolo is the same but less tannic than Barolo for example, the tannins give it a nice balance along with the sweetness of the sugars.


What are the unique herb ingredients that are making Baldoria Vermouth one of the kind?

Wormwood is the backbone of course. We edge towards floral notes which are aided along by our base spirit being a evaporation infused Genepi spirit. Along with those you can also find rosemary notes, lavender, sage and a whole lot more.


What are your plans with regards to the distribution network? Do you have any plans to distribute to Ukraine?

At the moment we are focusing a little closer to home, once our roots are grounded then we’ll look outward. We’re also working on our own distribution logistics but I’ll keep that hush for now 😉


Do you have any plans to launch additional spirit category for craft production apart of vermouth?

We will be releasing more vermouths under the Baldoria brand and our mother brand is called ERNEST, through this we are going to produce a number of different products in a number of different categories. Baldoria is just the first!


Would like to give some advises to others who would like to launch their own brand and what those advices would be?

Listen to your consumers, think long and hard about what you represent and what people want. You’ll make mistakes and always will, make sure you turn these mistakes into positives. It’s not easy to launch a brand but immensely satisfying seeing your bottles being used and loved.

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