Crafting Red Hazel: An Inspirational Whiskey Journey

Written By:
November 21, 2023

Get to know Whiskies of the World partner Red Hazel and their founder TK Burtin, the mastermind behind it all.

Photo Credit: Red Hazel

The Journey from Inception to Reinvention

In the vibrant city of Atlanta, an idea was born—Red Hazel, a brand that stands at the intersection of whiskey, diversity, and passion. The journey began about seven years ago, fueled by the creative mind of TK Burtin with a background in VIP package and bottle sales at Orlando's nightclubs, coupled with experience as a model and brand specialist for top-notch brands.

The genesis of Red Hazel took root during a pivotal moment in Atlanta, where the founder, having transitioned from modeling and brand work, discovered a group of women engaged in an animated discussion about whiskey and cigars. It was in that moment that the vision for Red Hazel crystallized—a brand catering to whiskey-loving women, connoisseurs, and novices alike. A brand that could be savored neat or incorporated into delightful cocktails.

The founder wasted no time and, the very next day, shared her vision with her brother, who, without hesitation, asked, "What do you need help with?" Red Hazel was officially registered that day, setting the wheels in motion for research, development, and a journey into the intricacies of the whiskey market.

Despite working full-time in the event staffing industry, between March 2018 and March 2020, the founder diligently conducted market research, formulated samples, fine-tuned marketing strategies, and began shaping the brand's identity. The initial plan unfolded amidst the challenges of time and financial constraints.

In a significant turn of events, the founder brought her brother on board as a partner in the venture, while Red Hazel remained proudly identified as woman-owned and woman-led. However, it was the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic that prompted a crucial decision. Faced with furloughs from their jobs, the siblings seized the moment, deciding it was time to launch Red Hazel with the resources at hand, reserving the possibility of a rebrand in the future.

On October 6, 2020, Red Hazel officially graced the market—a testament to resilience, determination, and a commitment to bringing diversity and passion to the world of whiskey. Today, Red Hazel continues to evolve, offering a range of products that appeal to a broad spectrum of whiskey enthusiasts, embodying the spirit of its dynamic and innovative founders.

Photo Credit: Ochomasdiez

Pivotal Moments in Red Hazel's History

A significant turning point occurred when Red Hazel secured an investment from Pronghorn Co at the beginning of 2023. This unexpected journey has played a critical role in shaping the brand's strategy for 2023 and beyond, preparing for ambitious goals in the years to come. The current rebranding marks the most pivotal moment for Red Hazel. After three years on the market, the brand is set to unveil a new label, logo, and overall branding that exquisitely captures Red Hazel's elegantly bold essence.

Overcoming Challenges

Challenge 1: Launching in 2020 amidst distributor hesitancy due to economic and pandemic-related uncertainties, Red Hazel initially embraced online sales to 31 states. The response was overwhelming, leading to a swift sell-out. Subsequently, Georgia distribution was secured.

Challenge 2: Adapting to a bottle change in 2021 due to glass shortages proved challenging, but customer feedback guided the transition. Surveys, emails, and event interactions helped Red Hazel evolve into a bottle design that resonated even more with its audience.

Photo Credit: Rafternmen

The Influence of Whiskies of the World on Red Hazel

Whiskies of the World has been a cornerstone for Red Hazel, offering a platform to connect with target audiences, learn from market players, and participate in informative workshops. Since joining WOW in 2021, Red Hazel has steadily grown its presence, gaining new customers, making sales, and forging partnerships with potential distributors and suppliers.

Beyond: Shipping to 20+ States

In December 2023, Red Hazel will spread holiday cheer by shipping to 20+ states, offering the perfect gift for whiskey enthusiasts nationwide.

Photo Credit: TK Burtin

Cheers to the Future Red Hazel!

Red Hazel's journey is one of passion, innovation, and a commitment to crafting whiskies that resonate with the diverse and dynamic preferences of its audience. As the brand evolves, it continues to leave an indelible mark on the world of whiskey, proving that elegance and boldness can coexist seamlessly in every pour. Cheers to Red Hazel, where every sip is a celebration!

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