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News Briefs for December 15, 2011

December 15, 2011

•Distell Group’s Two Oceans has released a 2011 Pinot Grigio to the U.S. market. Priced at $8.99 a 750-ml., the light and fruity varietal is made of 100% Pinot Grigio grapes and is is a top seller in South Africa. The Pinot Grigio launch follows the release of a Two Oceans Moscato last month. Focusing on U.S. wine-consuming areas like the northeast, southeast, California and Illinois, Two Oceans—handled in the U.S. by Aveníu Brands—is still in the process of extending its reach across the country.

•A bottle of 55-year-old Glenfiddich Scotch made to honor the oldest living Scot sold at an auction in Edinburgh to an unidentified Internet bidder for £46,850 ($72,632), breaking a European record. The bottle, sold by Bonhams, was one of 15 bottles of the Glenfiddich Janet Sheed Roberts Reserve (named for Janet Sheed Roberts, who is 110). The Scotch, which was put into casks in 1955 and bottled last month, had a list price of £30,000-£35,000 ($46,500-$54,000). The record that it broke came from a 64-year-old bottle of Glenfiddich that sold for £25,200 ($39,000) in Edinburgh in 2010.

•W. Kent Taylor, founder and chief executive of the Texas Roadhouse restaurant chain, told Nation’s Restaurant News that after a solid and profitable 2011, Texas Roadhouse has plans for further expansion in 2012. The chain posted a 13% profit increase for its third quarter in 2011, and in September opened its first international unit in Dubai. For 2012, Texas Roadhouse plans to open 25 new locations throughout the U.S., as well as several more restaurants in the Middle East. Taylor launched Texas Roadhouse in 1993 in Clarksville, Indiana, and the chain now operates more than 300 units in more than 40 U.S. states, along with the new Dubai unit.

•According to a new study from the Pew Research Center, a majority of U.S. consumers (51%) use search engines and specialty websites when searching for information on local restaurants, bars or clubs. Newspapers were the second-ranked resource at 31%, while word-of-mouth came in third with 23%. Only 3% of respondents, however, claimed to rely on social media sites such as Facebook or Twitter. More than 1,080 U.S. consumers were interviewed for the Pew study, which was conducted in January 2011.

 

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