Exclusive news and research on the wine, spirits and beer business

News Briefs for January 12, 2016

January 12, 2016

•New York-based Davos Brands, the marketer of Ty Ku Sake and Aviation gin, has added Sombra Mezcal and Astral Tequila to its spirits stable. Sombra ($39.99 a bottle) was launched in 2006 by master sommelier Richard Betts, who followed up with the introduction of Astral ($44.99) in 2013. Commenting on the potential of the mezcal category in the U.S., Davos vice chairman Guillaume Cuvelier said, “Mezcal is to Tequila what single malt Scotch was to whisky 30 years ago.” Davos tells SND it will initially look to “enhance the depth of distribution in Sombra’s current 25 markets with mid-term goals to expand nationally.”

•Heaven Hill Brands’ Deep Eddy Vodka is extending its flavored lineup with the launch of Deep Eddy Peach. Made with real peaches, the new entry is slated to roll out nationwide this February, priced at around $19.99 a 750-ml. Deep Eddy Peach marks the sixth expression in the brand’s portfolio, joining existing Straight Vodka, Lemon, Ruby Red Grapefruit, Cranberry and Sweet Tea. An Impact “Hot Brand,” Deep Eddy currently sells more than 700,000 cases annually in the U.S.

•Robert Oatley, whose Rosemount Estate winery helped lead an Australian wine boom in the United States in the 1990s, died in Sydney on Jan. 10 at age 87. Born in a Sydney suburb in 1928, the fifth-generation Australian built a successful coffee import business before he bought land in Upper Hunter Valley and started Rosemount Estate in 1969. By 2000, the distinctive diamond label on Rosemount’s moderately priced Shiraz had found its way onto enough retail shelves across America to make Rosemount the second best–selling Australian brand in the U.S., according to Impact Databank. Wine Spectator has more on Oatley’s life and career.

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