Moscato Mania Takes Hold: Wine SpectatorFebruary 9, 2012
Moscato is now the No.-3 white wine in the U.S., Wine Spectator reports—more popular than Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc. Nielsen data for off-premise retail sales shows Moscato was up 73% in both volume and revenue from 2010. That’s on top of a 100% spike the previous year.
Impact Databank estimates that U.S. Moscato volume—including the on-premise—may be twice the 3.9 million nine-liter cases logged by Nielsen for the 52 weeks through January 7. E&J Gallo’s Barefoot and Trinchero Family Estates’ Sutter Home are the biggest Moscato brands in the market, at 1.1 million cases and 940,000 cases, respectively, in Nielsen’s latest yearly data.
Tom Steffanci, president of importer W.J. Deutsch & Sons, believes that while other categories, like Malbec, have shown muscular growth in the U.S. recently, the Moscato phenomenon is different. “I think this is a category buster,” he said. He predicted that Yellow Tail Moscato, launched only last April, will reach 800,000 cases this year—a full 10% of Yellow Tail’s volume.
Marc Taub, president of Palm Bay Imports, which imports five Italian Moscatos, including Cavit, agrees. “I think you’ll see two, three, four years of this crazy growth,” he says. For Wine Spectator’s full report on the Moscato craze, go to WineSpectator.com.