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News Briefs for November 18, 2015

November 18, 2015

•Online retailer Wine.com says it has doubled its selection and launched a new mobile website ahead of the holiday season. With the expanded selection, the retailer now offers more than 10,000 wines to consumers served by its West Coast distribution hub, while its East Coast hub now markets more than 7,000 wines. Meanwhile, with mobile devices accounting for 40% of Wine.com traffic and mobile revenue up 55% this year, the company expects its new mobile site to stoke further progress in that fast-growing area of the market.

•Louisville, Kentucky’s Michter’s Distillery is set to launch a pair of 10-year-old and 20-year-old single barrel Bourbons this December. The launches mark the first 2015 bottlings for both expressions. Michter’s 10-year Bourbon will retail for $120 a bottle, while the 20-year Bourbon is priced at $600 a bottle. Their rollout follows a recent shortage of Michter’s core lineup, with the brand’s US*1 Sour Mash Whiskey unavailable through the end of the year, and the rest of its US*1 range currently on allocation.

•Moët Hennessy is looking to draw millennial consumers to its Moët & Chandon Champagne brand with a new digital campaign titled “The NOW.” Featuring a celebration theme, the new platform debuted with a 90-second film starring Moët & Chandon global brand ambassador Roger Federer, and is focused around an ethos of “seizing moments and having no regrets.”

Ketel One vodka, jointly owned by Diageo and the Nolet family, is commemorating the 325th anniversary of Holland’s Nolet Family Distillery with a new limited edition bottle. Inspired by traditional Dutch spirits bottles, the packaging features copper matte plating, as well as the Nolet family crest and coin artwork, with each coin symbolizing one of the 10 generations of Nolet distillers. The 1-liter anniversary bottle is debuting nationwide this month, retailing at around $32.49.

•Pabst Brewing Co. is re-launching classic beer label Ballantine Burton Ale as a limited edition seasonal. First brewed by New Jersey-based P. Ballantine & Sons Brewing Co. in the 1930s, Ballantine Burton Ale was typically aged in American oak for up to 20 years, with P. Ballantine & Sons gifting the beer—which was never made publicly available—to select individuals. Pabst is rolling out a recreated version of the 11.3%-abv brew this month through December in select Northeastern markets, available in six-packs and on draft. The launch follows Pabst’s revival of Ballantine IPA, which originated in 1878, late last year.

•Liquid Asset Brands LLC (LAB), a $50 million innovation fund led by former Angel’s Envy partner Marc Bushala, has invested $14 million in New Zealand-based Stolen Spirits, acquiring a majority stake. Stolen’s signature Smoked Rum is distilled in Trinidad and Tobago, and slated to launch in key U.S. markets like New York, Florida, California, Massachusetts and Illinois early next year. The LAB investment will allow Stolen Spirits to expand its portfolio to include a smoked whiskey and other products. Bacardi acquired the Angel’s Envy Bourbon brand, founded by Bushala and the late Lincoln Henderson, earlier this year for an undisclosed sum.

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