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News Briefs for March 28, 2019

March 28, 2019

•Brown-Forman-owned single malt Scotch The BenRiach will launch a 25-year-old expression in the U.S. in April. The 46.8% abv whisky is matured in a combination of casks, including ex-Bourbon barrels and ex-Burgundy barriques. This release is one of the oldest unpeated whiskies in BenRiach’s portfolio and joins the 35-year-old, 21-year-old, and 10-year-old, among others. The whisky will be available across the U.S. for a suggested retail price of $300 a 750-ml. Brown-Forman’s single malt Scotch portfolio also includes the GlenDronach and Glenglassaugh whiskies, all of which the company acquired three years ago for $416 million from a group led by industry veteran Billy Walker.

•Pernod Ricard has revamped the packaging for Absolut’s higher-end Elyx vodka. Made from 40% recycled glass, the new bottle was created by London design agency Stranger & Stranger and includes an engraved copper cap and other copper design elements, alluding to the copper column still used to distill the liquid. Elyx, which is at 42.3% abv, retails at around $40 a 750-ml. and depleted 35,000 cases in the U.S. last year, according to Impact Databank.

•Two Provence-based, family-owned, and rosé-centric wineries—Château Roubine and Château Sainte-Beatrice—are joining the Quintessential Wines portfolio in the U.S. Château Roubine’s flagship rosé, La Rose ($24 a 750-ml.), is set to roll out nationwide this May. It’s a blend of 50% Grenache, 40% Cinsault, and 10% Syrah, and will debut with a supply of 5,000 cases. Both Roubine and Sainte-Beatrice are owned by Provençal vigneron Valerie Rousselle.

•Petaluma, California-based Adobe Road Winery is introducing The Racing Series, a new collection of four upscale red blends. The Racing Series includes Redline ($35), a blend of Cabernet, Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, and Malbec; Shift ($56), a blend of Zinfandel, Barbera, Grenache, Petite Sirah, and Carignane; The 24, a Rhône-style blend; and Apex ($66), a mix of Cabernet, Syrah, Merlot, and Petite Sirah. The name refers to Adobe Road owner Kevin Buckler’s auto racing career as a driver and owner of pro sports car racing team The Racer’s Group.

•Quintessential Brands Group, with spirits labels including Thomas Dakin Gin and The Dubliner Irish Whiskey, is taking control of its own importation and distribution in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean, effective May 1. In addition to moving these responsibilities in-house, the move consolidates brands under one entity, Quintessential Brands North America, led by industry veteran Steve Ward as CEO. The brands were previously dispersed among distributors including Heaven Hill and Prestige Beverage Group. Founded in 2011 by Enzo Visone, former CEO of Campari Group, Quintessential opened its new Dublin Liberties Distillery last month.

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