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Zonin Looks To Expand Prosecco Occasions With New Super-Premium Trio

December 9, 2015

With the Prosecco market in the U.S. skyrocketing, key category player Zonin is looking to stoke further growth with the launch of a new “Dress Code” Collection, comprised of three super-premium sparklers.

The new wines are color-coded by their packaging and are differentiated both by their varietal makeup and the occasions they’re meant to service.

“Prosecco is becoming a big category, and this is the biggest innovation in Zonin’s history, which dates back to 1821,” says Zonin director of marketing Emanuele Siena. Winemaker Lorenzo Zonin adds, “This is the first time we’ve created wines with specific occasions in mind.”

Zonin’s Dress Code Collection includes White, Grey and Black Prosecco DOC offerings. The White is 91% Glera and 9% Pinot Bianco, and is geared toward open-air events and parties, while the Grey is 87% Glera and 13% Pinot Grigio and is intended as a go-to Prosecco for informal gatherings. Lastly, the Black variant, 90% Glera and 10% Pinot Noir, is billed as a richer wine for elegant dinners and evening occasions. Each of the newcomers—which are launching nationwide—retails at around $17 a bottle, about $2-$3 above the core Zonin brand. Zonin intends to market the Dress Code Collection wines both on their own and in cocktails, with the market increasingly interested in a variety of serves as the Prosecco category expands.

Prosecco hit 3.5 million cases in the U.S. last year, up from 500,000 cases in 2008, and Zonin has been a participant in the upswing. Its namesake Prosecco earned Impact “Hot Brand” honors after more than doubling to 330,000 cases from 2011-2014. The segment’s surge has prompted warnings from several key producers, including Mionetto and Bisol, that demand is outstripping supply.

“It’s true, grapes are getting more expensive,” says Zonin, who points out that his company has the largest vineyard holdings in the category, at about 300 hectares (740 acres). “The demand is huge, not only in the U.S. but the U.K. and Germany as well.” Indeed, Prosecco shipments to the U.K. leapt 66% to 5.4 million cases last year, according to Impact Databank, overtaking Germany to become the category’s largest export market with a 29% share. The U.S., with a share of 18%, currently ranks as Prosecco’s third-largest export market by volume.

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