Ardmore Traditional Cask Company: Bean Global Spirits & Wine Price: £24.99 Expert's verdict... 9/10 ?This whisky balances tradition with consumer engagement. The tin will appeal to traditional whisky drinkers, but it importantly has the tasting note on the front of the label making it more accessible. The palate is full-bodied with earthy richness and peat-driven smoke flavours, which are well-balanced by soft vanilla notes. It is a stepping stone for people who shop the mainstream malt category but aren't quite ready to trade up to more challenging malts. Henry Moran, trading manager, spirits, MBL Consumer verdict... 7/10 ? The image of a golden eagle soaring over highlands is typical of what I would expect from a malt whisky. It may be representative but it's uninspiring and lacks a USP from a design point of view. The bottle did, however, give me a feeling of age and quality. The whisky had a full flavour that was initially strong and peaty but gave way to a subtle sweetness. I think it would have to compete on-shelf with established single malts at this price, but I would recommend it as it stands out from other products. Dave Messent, teacher, Hove A year down the line... Fresita Company: Paragon Vintners Launch Price: £6.99 for 75cl & £7.95 for 4 x 18.75cl Today's price: £6.99 for 75cl & £1.99 for 20cl Fresita, which is mainly aimed at women aged 25-plus, secured initial listings with House of Fraser and various independent wine merchants before winning listings with Asda and Sainsbury's. Sales have benefited from sampling activity at exhibitions such as Taste of London and a sponsorship promotion with the Pink Ribbon Foundation. Sales and consumer interest were better than expected in its first year, according to the company. The aim next year is to grow sales through stockists and expand distribution.