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News Briefs for October 5, 2017

October 5, 2017

•Diageo is set to relaunch its seasonal Captain Morgan Jack-O’Blast offering this month ahead of Halloween. Geared toward the chilled shot occasion, Jack-O’Blast is a pumpkin spiced rum at 60 proof that retails at around $16 a 750-ml. The seasonal offering, which is rolling out nationwide, is packaged in a pumpkin-styled bottle. In Diageo’s fiscal year ended in June, Captain Morgan’s North America sales grew by 4% by both volume and value.

•Champagne Piper-Heidsieck has revamped its lineup, rebranding its signature and vintage cuvée labels. Piper-Heidsieck Brut will now be called Piper-Heidsieck Cuvée Brut, while the Piper-Heidsieck Vintage Brut has been renamed Piper-Heidsieck Vintage. Concurrently, the brand has unveiled new labeling across its full portfolio, featuring a more modernized look, shortened foil around the neck of the bottle and a refreshed logo. In addition to the Cuvée Brut and Vintage offerings, the Piper-Heidsieck lineup includes Rosé Sauvage and Cuvée Sublime expressions. Piper-Heidsieck, which is marketed by Terlato Wine Group in the U.S., was up 7.1% to 45,000 cases last year, according to Impact Databank.

•William Grant & Sons’ Balvenie single malt Scotch is releasing the latest offering in its limited Tun 1509 series. Marrying whiskies from 23 traditional casks and Sherry butts selected by Balvenie malt master David Stewart, Tun 1509 Batch 4 is non-chill-filtered and has an abv of 51.7%. The new entry retails at $399 a bottle and is rolling out this month. The fifth-largest single malt Scotch brand in the U.S., according to Impact Databank, the Balvenie grew 13% to 100,000 cases last year.

•Beam Suntory is extending its Hornitos Tequila brand with a new Cristalino offering. Hornitos Cristalino starts as a triple-distilled añejo Tequila, aged at least 12 months in traditional American white oak casks. It then undergoes a filtering process that results in a clear liquid. The 80 proof entry retails at $30 a 750-ml. and is billed as an approachable premium Tequila appealing to consumers new to the category. It follows the recent launch of Hornitos’ “A Shot Worth Taking” marketing campaign. Hornitos, part of Beam Suntory’s Sauza Tequila portfolio, was up 22% to 722,000 cases in the U.S. last year, according to Impact Databank.

•Ireland’s Walsh Whiskey Distillery has appointed former Diageo executive John Kelly to the newly created role of commercial director. Prior to joining Walsh Whiskey, Kelly held a variety of senior positions within Diageo’s Irish, Global Travel and Middle Eastern business units. In his new role, he will spearhead sales and marketing operations and work with Walsh Whiskey founder Bernard Walsh to further develop business strategy, brand building and new products. The Walsh Whiskey portfolio, which sells about 20,000 cases in the U.S., is handled by Disaronno International and includes The Irishman and Writers’ Tears Irish whiskey brands.

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