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

News Briefs for February 19, 2016

February 19, 2016

•Beam Suntory plans to move its worldwide headquarters from the Chicago suburb of Deerfield, where it’s been based since 1988, to the city itself, possibly as soon as later this year. The company has a deal to sub-lease a 100,000-square-foot space in Chicago’s Merchandise Mart for its 500 headquarters employees, real estate sources say. The leaseholder is Motorola Mobility, the cell phone maker that has been downsizing recently. The Merchandise Mart, once known primarily for its furniture showrooms, has become a preferred home lately for many high-tech companies.

•The Tuck Beckstoffer family has agreed to acquire St. Helena’s Dancing Hares Winery and Vineyard from founders Paula Brooks and Bob Cook. The deal, for which the price was undisclosed, includes Dancing Hares’ 20-acre winery estate, vineyards, winery, brands and inventory. Dancing Hares is known for its estate red ($150) and Mad Hatter Napa Valley Cabernet ($68). In addition, Tuck Beckstoffer Wines will produce its flagship Semper and Mockingbird offerings at Dancing Hares Winery moving forward.

•Heaven Hill Brands has appointed John Scarborough as president of Deep Eddy Vodka, replacing Eric Dopkins. Scarborough has been with the brand since its early days, most recently serving as chief financial officer. Since its debut in 2010 with its original Sweet Tea Vodka, Deep Eddy has grown to reach 650,000 cases in the U.S. leaping 97% in 2015, according to Impact Databank. Last September, Heaven Hill acquired the brand for about $400 million.

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