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

News Briefs for November 18, 2016

November 18, 2016

•Ireland’s Harp Lager, part of the Diageo Beer Company USA portfolio, has partnered with professional golfer Graeme McDowell. The pact includes digital videos and social content, event appearances and point-of-sale materials in on- and off-premise locations. Diageo’s U.S. beer unit recently undertook a revamp in which labels like Harp, Smirnoff Ice and Smithwick’s are expected to play an enlarged role alongside the company’s core Guinness brand.

•Domaines Paul Mas, imported by Palm Bay’s Esprit du Vin division in the U.S., is launching two new wines in January under its Vignes de Nicole label. The Languedoc producer’s new offerings include a Vignes de Nicole Assemblage Blanc composed of 40% Chardonnay, 25% Sauvignon Blanc, 25% Viognier and 10% Picpoul, as well as a Vignes de Nicole red made of 56% Cabernet Sauvignon and 44% Merlot. Both IGP Pays d’Oc wines, Paul Mas’ newcomers will retail at around $16 a bottle.

•Boston-based steakhouse chain Smith & Wollensky, recently acquired by Dublin investment firm Danu Partners for an undisclosed sum, is in expansion mode. The company currently has seven namesake restaurants in the U.S.—two in Boston and one each in Chicago, Miami Beach, Las Vegas, Houston and Columbus, Ohio—and says it’s exploring additional domestic markets as well as opportunities for its more casual brand Wollensky’s Grill, which has a location in Chicago (Smith & Wollensky’s original location, in New York, is operated separately from the group). Smith & Wollensky is also eyeing potential openings in key global markets such as Tokyo, Singapore, Hong Kong, Seoul, Taipei, Bangkok, Dubai and Mexico City, among others, after its initial international foray in London last year.

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