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

News Briefs for November 11, 2016

November 11, 2016

•Diageo’s Ketel One is introducing an on-pack virtual reality kit this holiday season. Compatible with iOS and Android devices, VR goggles will be packaged with 1.75-liters of Ketel One for about $33 at retail accounts nationwide. Content includes 360-degree views of the Nolet distillery in Schiedam, Holland, as well as a menu of cocktails narrated by mixologist Dale DeGroff, among other features. Ketel One was down 1.7% in the U.S. last year to 2 million cases, according to Impact Databank.

•Argentina’s Rutini Wines is rolling out a Trumpeter Rosé inspired by the Provence rosé style. Made with 100% Malbec, Trumpeter Rosé grapes are hand-harvested in the middle of the night and fermented for 14 days in stainless steel conical tanks, with the wine aged on the lees for 10 days. Trumpeter Rosé is retailing around the $12.99 mark in New York, Florida, Pennsylvania and California, with expansion to more markets to follow.

•Constellation Brands has entered a comprehensive arena sponsorship with Brooklyn, New York’s Barclays Center for its Corona Extra, Modelo Especial and Ballast Point brands. The pact will feature three individually branded bars at the arena, with Corona Extra and Ballast Point positioned as the official imported and craft beer sponsors of Barclays Center, respectively, and Modelo Especial as the official imported beer sponsor of the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets. Constellation acquired San Diego-based Ballast Point for about $1 billion a year ago. In other Constellation news, the company’s Casa Noble Tequila has unveiled a new limited edition extra añejo, Alta Belleza, marking the first annual entry in the brand’s new Colección del Fundador (Founder’s Collection). Casa Noble Alta Belleza, aged five years in French oak and finished for six months in Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon barrels, is limited to 563 bottles, retailing at $1,200 each.

•Phillips Distilling is extending its Revel Stoke whisky brand with a new Root Beer flavor. Designed to compete with hard sodas and traditional whisky cocktails, Revel Stoke Root Beer is launching nationwide, retailing at $14 a 750-ml. and $16 a 1-liter. Revel Stoke, which grew 17% to 35,000 cases last year, according to Impact Databank, saw dollar sales more than double in Nielsen channels in the 12 weeks through October 15.

•Jean-Henri Schÿler, owner of Bordeaux négociant Maison Schröder & Schÿler and third-growth Château Kirwan in Margaux, passed away Oct. 31, three days after celebrating his 85th birthday. Wine Spectator takes a look at Schÿler’s life and career.

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