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News Briefs for May 6, 2015

May 6, 2015

•Anheuser-Busch InBev’s U.S. volume fell 6% to 25.5 hectoliters in the first quarter, partially owing to a tough comparable period a year earlier. Among the brewer’s key brand, above-premium entries like Michelob Ultra, Stella Artois and Goose Island performed well, while Bud Light was down 2% and Budweiser also decreased by low single digits. ABI’s U.S. EBITDA fell 6.5% to $1.3 billion during the quarter, while revenue declined 5% to $3.3 billion.

•Illinois-based importer and marketer Winesellers Ltd. has added two new producers to its portfolio, New Zealand’s Murdoch James Estate and Spain’s Dominios de Castilla. Murdoch James specializes in 100% estate-grown fruit, with a portfolio including Martinborough Estate Sauvignon Blanc ($16), Pinot Gris ($17) and Pinot Noir ($25), as well as Murdoch Martinborough High Block Reserve Pinot Noir ($40). Dominios de Castilla’s wines include a Bodegas La Soterraña D.O. Rueda ($10), a Bodegas Rejadorada D.O. Toro ($12) and a Bodegas Viña Vilano D.O. Ribera del Duero Crianza ($13).

•International Beverage USA’s AnCnoc single malt Scotch has released a 24-year-old expression nationwide in the U.S. The latest offering ($180) is non-chill filtered and aged in ex-Sherry and ex-Bourbon barrels. AnCnoc is produced at Scotland’s Knockdhu Distillery in Speyside. The 24-year-old joins a portfolio that includes 12-, 16-, 18-, 22- and 35-year-olds, as well as vintages like AnCnoc 2000 and AnCnoc 1975. A ThaiBev subsidiary, International Beverage also owns the Old Pulteney, Balblair and Speyburn single malt Scotch brands.

•Gene & Georgetti, the family-owned steakhouse that has operated from a single location in Chicago’s River North neighborhood since 1941, is set to open its first branch restaurant. A 260-seat Gene & Georgetti is scheduled to open in the suburb of Rosemont June 28 in a former banquet hall owned by the village. The executive chef will be Luis Quiroz, former chef at nearby Barrington Country Bistro. The wine list is expected to focus on American and Italian labels, largely priced under $150.

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