Royal split for Pernod as beefeaters sever ties with gin

Graphic: Rob 'axeman' Johnson

The Tower of London’s iconic Beefeater guards have cut ties with their namesake gin saying the brand is trying to ‘steal their crown jewels’.

‘Do I look like someone who’d drink a blood orange flavoured gin? Even neat over ice?’ said 86-year-old Alf Topside of the Very Old Men in Tights union (VOMIT). ‘The clue’s in the name. We’re beefeaters, not quorneaters.

‘And don’t get me started on the Strawberry.’

Botch Whisky

It’s the second ‘royal fallout’ for Pernod Ricard inside ten days, after a leak caused it to abandon a controversial new line extension for one of its top whiskies.

The label was to have shown Prince Harry and Meghan flipping the bird at the queen, and was billed as ‘the younger generation’s Royal Salute’. 


Pernod Ricard declared themselves ‘disappointed’ with the latest royal setback but admitted that relations with the guards had been strained for a while.

‘They said being associated with some of the flavoured variations made them look ridiculous,’ said Pernod Ricard’s Mal Ibu.

‘Which is a bit rich given what they have to wear on a daily basis.’

Legal (b)eagles

The ‘Bexit’ puts the Tower’s wardens on a collision course with the brand over the rights to the Beefeater name. 

‘The yeomen might have got there first, but protecting our brands is a core belief of ours and we’re confident our lawyers can nail this one,’ said Ibu.

‘After all, they did a great job with Havana Club in the US.’

Red rooster

This isn’t the first time a drinks brand has come into conflict with a powerful body over its brand name.

Yellow Tail famously had to pay compensation to several million Japanese amberjack for ‘giving fish a bad name’.

While in the 1980s Gallo successfully fought off a legal action from the Italian Rooster Breeders Federation by successfully proving that it actually was a load of cock.

And the new name is…

The wardens of the Tower have various options should they lose the rights to the Beefeater name.  

‘Some of the guys like the Steakchompers or the Guardians of Beelzebub,’ said Topside.

 ‘But I think we should be known as the Tanquerays.’

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