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

News Briefs for November 22, 2016

November 22, 2016

•Pure Liquid, a new boutique wine and spirits shop, has opened in the World Trade Center’s Oculus transportation hub in New York. Pure Liquid is a new venture by chef Henry Meer and business partner Richard Hanano (Meer was chef and owner of the former City Hall restaurant in TriBeCa, which closed nearly a year ago). Hanano tells SND that Pure Liquid’s 1,220-square-foot space houses about 500 wine SKUs and 200 spirits SKUs, including a wide selection of artisanal Bourbons, Cognacs and single malt Scotch whiskies. It also stocks more than 50 wines under $20 a bottle, with an even split between domestics and imports. Market Watch has the full story.

•Washington is poised to have its largest-ever harvest in 2016, and the same is true for the state’s biggest wine producer—Ste. Michelle Wine Estates. Amid an early bud break and moderate temperatures that extended the harvest period to a full three months (August 13 to November 13), Ste. Michelle’s total Washington crop is expected to come in somewhere between 275,000 and 280,000 tons—a record-high for the Woodinville-based company. The 2016 harvest represents an increase of more than 20% over the previous record: 227,000 tons in 2014. Ste. Michelle’s bountiful harvests have come as the wine company has enjoyed impressive volume growth. Last year, Ste. Michelle’s depletions grew by 6% to 8.2 million cases, according to Impact Databank, and the company recently reported similar growth for the first nine months of 2016.

•Jose Cuervo Tequila has unveiled the latest iteration of its limited edition Reserva de la Familia label. Released annually, Reserva de la Familia ($150 a 750-ml.) is an extra añejo Tequila sourced from the Cuervo estate’s private reserves, with 2016’s expression packaged in a box designed by Mexican artist Jorge Méndez Blake. Jose Cuervo, which is marketed in the U.S. by Proximo, was up 3% to 3.45 million cases in the U.S. last year, according to Impact Databank.

•Heaven Hill Brands has promoted Jacob Sabel to the role of Southeast region manager, granting him oversight of wholesaler and broker relations across Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama and Mississippi. He will report directly to select division manager Jim Cotter. Sabel joined Heaven Hill in 2012 as Georgia area manager, and has also previously held roles with Sovereign Brands and Atlanta Beverage Company/Anheuser-Busch.

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