News Briefs for February 27, 2013February 27, 2013
•Indigo Wine Group has introduced South Africa’s Lion’s Lair Chenin Blanc and Shiraz to the U.S. market. Produced by Leeuwenkuil Family Vineyards in the Swartland region, both wines are priced at $12.99 a bottle. The Lion’s Lair portfolio also includes Family Reserve White and Family Reserve Red. Venice, Florida-based Indigo Wine Group works with distributors in 45 states and specializes in South African wines, including Barista, Groot Constantia, Reyneke, Bouchard Finlayson and Robertson Winery. It also represents wineries from Argentina, Australia, Chile, Italy and Spain.
•Darden Restaurants says it will slow the expansion of its Olive Garden chain in the coming years. The group has been opening around 36 new Olive Gardens a year recently, but will cut the number to around 15 new locations looking ahead. Darden added that it plans to slow price increases at Olive Garden as well as Red Lobster and LongHorn Steakhouse from the 2%-3% range of previous years to around 1%. The changes are being driven by more competition hitting Darden’s brands from fast-casual chains like Chipotle and Panera. Customer traffic across Darden’s range has slipped by 7.7% since 2008, the company revealed.