Duboeuf, Deutsch Move HobNob Chardonnay To CaliforniaJune 3, 2013
Amid a long-term slide in the U.S. market for its namesake brand, Georges Duboeuf has enjoyed rising sales for its newer HobNob label, created in partnership with importer Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits. This September, HobNob will unveil a new Chardonnay from California—transitioning its sourcing from France—in a move that proprietor Franck Duboeuf believes could take the brand to a new level.
Chardonnay is the second-leading varietal behind Pinot Noir for HobNob, a Millennial-targeted brand that rose 7% to 185,000 cases last year, according to Impact Databank. Duboeuf tells SND that the change won’t result in any alteration of style or price for HobNob Chardonnay, which sells in line with the rest of the brand at around $10-$11 a bottle. With the switch, he says, HobNob will be offering the best value possible for the money. The move to California sourcing for HobNob Chardonnay follows the release of red blend HobNob Wicked Red last year. Languedoc-sourced Wicked Red has fared well in the early going, Duboeuf says.
Beyond HobNob, Duboeuf acknowledges that conditions remain challenging for the Beaujolais region, of which his company represents 20% of production. In 2011, Beaujolais produced about 9.4 million nine-liter cases of wine; 2012’s difficult vintage yielded only around 5.6 million cases. Asked whether that decline will result in price increases, Duboeuf said, “Unfortunately yes, but we’re still evaluating by how much. For now we’re still on the 2011 vintage, which is excellent value for money.”
In addition to the California Chardonnay, Duboeuf is making another change beginning with the 2012 vintage, prominently displaying the names of its small, family-owned producers on the labels of their wines for the first time. “Duboeuf is often regarded as a negociant, and indeed we do practice the art of blending. But we work with 400 growers, and in some cases we bottle and market their wines separately,” Duboeuf says. Among the wines whose producers are being elevated on their 2012 labels are Morgon Jean-Ernest Descombes, Mâcon-Villages Domaine des Chenevrières and Pouilly-Fuissé Emile Beranger.Subscribe to Shanken News Daily’s Email Newsletter, delivered to your inbox each morning.
Tagged : Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits, wine
GET YOUR FIRST LOOK AT 2021 DATA AND 2022 PROJECTIONS FOR THE WINE AND SPIRITS INDUSTRIES. ORDER YOUR 2022 IMPACT DATABANK REPORTS. CLICK HERE.