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Leese-Fitch Igniting Growth For The Other Guys

November 8, 2012

Sonoma, California-based wine and spirits group The Other Guys (TOG) tells Shanken News Daily that sales of its Leese-Fitch wine brand jumped by 65% through October, to reach 126,000 cases. Last month alone, the California-focused range more than doubled its volume on the same period last year, from around 9,300 cases in October 2011 to more than 19,000 cases for October 2012. Leese-Fitch is the top selling brand in TOG’s overall portfolio, which is expected to near the 300,000-case-mark this year.

Priced at $12.99 a 750-ml., Leese-Fitch features Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Zinfandel and Merlot. According to TOG president August Sebastiani, the brand’s success has been built primarily on attractive pricing and packaging, as well as a “food-friendly” taste profile and initial on-premise focus. “We were originally able to establish the brand through on-premise distribution and have now begun to see success through retail channels and bottle shops,” he explains.

Formerly the boutique wine unit of Don Sebastiani & Sons, TOG spun off in 2010, becoming a stand-alone company. In addition to Leese-Fitch, the group’s wine brands currently include Pennywise ($10.99), Plungerhead ($14.99-$19.99) and Hey Mambo ($9.99)—which last year moved 59,000 cases, 36,000 cases and 30,000 cases, respectively—and two smaller labels, Moobuzz ($14.99) and The White Knight ($9.99). Last year, the company launched its craft spirits division, 35 Maple, which rolled out 4,000 cases of its first offering, Masterson’s rye whisky ($79 a 750-ml.), in August 2011. Earlier this year, 35 Maple introduced Uncle Val’s Gin, a small-batch juniper-based gin priced between $35-$40 a bottle.

 

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