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

Exclusive: Premium California Wines, Sparklers, And Rosés Abound Among Impact’s “Hot Brands”

March 12, 2019

With wine consumers increasingly moving up the price ladder, premium brands are in abundance on Impact’s latest “Hot Brands” wine list. A total of 40 brands from the wine category earned Hot Brand honors this year, including 24 domestic labels and 16 imports.

To qualify as Hot Brands, wine brands must be either an established brand with double-digit growth each year from 2016-2018, or an established brand with at least 15% growth in 2018. The minimum volume threshold for domestic wines is 250,000 cases, while imports have a minimum requirement of 200,000 cases.

The domestic wine Hot Brands roster included eight new additions this year. E.&J. Gallo fielded the largest number of brands among suppliers, including one newcomer and three returnees. Constellation, Trinchero, Delicato, and The Wine Group also all had multiple domestic brands earn honors for their 2018 performances. While the domestic list is dominated by California, two Pacific Northwest labels—House Wine, from Washington, and Erath, from Oregon—were also among the winners.

On the import side, the Hot Brand list is led by sparkling wines and rosés, which continue to drive growth in the category. Prosecco prevails among sparklers, with six Italian wines—all featuring a Prosecco in their lineups—making the grade. The rosé category continues to be led by France, which has three Hot Brands this year, although rosés from around the world are now making inroads in the market. Meanwhile, New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs are also going strong, with four brands represented. One Spanish wine, one Australian wine, and one sangria round out the imported wine Hot Brands contingent.—Daniel Marsteller

The full report on Hot Brands for both spirits and wine appears in the March 1&15 issue of Impact. Beer’s Hot Brands will be announced in the July 1 edition.

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