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

News Briefs for December 16, 2013

December 16, 2013

•Tequila Avión, minority-owned by Pernod Ricard, has partnered with New York City’s Heartland Brewery on a new beer, Avión Tequila Stout. The new collaborative brew, aged in Avión añejo barrels, will be available for a limited time at Heartland’s Flatiron Hall establishment, an underground beer hall located in New York’s Flatiron district, selling for $6 a 10-ounce pour, $9 a 16-ounce pour and $17 for a 32-ounce pour. Avión Stout marks the second time the Tequila-maker has tied up with Heartland, following Avión Tequila IPA, which appeared in September.

•Cutty Sark has released a new blended Scotch whisky that pays tribute to the brand’s early days during Prohibition. Cutty Sark Prohibition Edition, or Cutty Pro, is rolling out now to select markets and will expand to national availability throughout 2014. Retailing at $30 a bottle, the new entry is packaged in an opaque black bottle with a cork seal—touches intended to evoke the Prohibition era. According to brand owner Edrington Group, Cutty Pro salutes the notorious Captain William McCoy, who gained a reputation during the Prohibition era for smuggling uncut and unadulterated Cutty Sark whisky into speakeasies, earning the nickname “The Real McCoy.” Cutty Sark is currently handled by Rémy Cointreau USA (Edrington is in the process of setting up its own U.S. sales and marketing unit, to open next April).

•The battle over 154 acres of undeveloped land on Sonoma’s coast owned by Artesa Vineyards and Winery isn’t over, but environmental groups have won a key round. A county judge has rejected several parts of Artesa’s environmental review of plans to plant vineyards on the property, blocking development of the site for now. Wine Spectator has the full story here.

•National Distributing Company (NDC) is promoting Michael Thomas to executive vice president of NDC New Mexico, effective February 2014, upon the retirement of current NDC New Mexico state president Bob Daws. Thomas most recently held the position of vice president of NDC New Mexico and will now lead the state’s business unit in sales and operations. In his new post, Thomas will report directly to RNDC region president Jay Johnson.

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