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News Briefs for June 26, 2019

June 26, 2019

•New York-based importer Skurnik Wines & Spirits has acquired Cincinnati, Ohio’s Vintner Select, increasing Skurnik’s direct distribution network to eight states. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. The new company will be called Skurnik Wines Vintner Select and will represent the Skurnik portfolio alongside a host of other collections like Indigenous Selections, Rosenthal Wine Merchant, and Grapes of Spain, among others. With Vintner Select folded into Skurnik, the importer will have a direct distribution footprint that includes Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and California.

•Patrón Tequila’s ultra-premium Gran Patrón Smoky is now available nationwide. Launched last September in 13 U.S. markets, the 50.5% abv, 100% blue agave Tequila is made with traditional smoking and crushing techniques at the Patrón Hacienda in Jalisco, Mexico. It’s roasted with mesquite in underground stone pits for nearly a week. The suggested retail pricing for Gran Patrón Smoky is $199 a 750-ml.

•E. & J. Gallo’s Barefoot Cellars has introduced Barefoot Wine-To-Go, the latest new packaging format for the brand. The 500-ml. carton features a screwcap and is available nationwide for Barefoot’s Moscato, Rosé, Pinot Grigio, and Chardonnay wines. In support of the launch, Barefoot has partnered with actress Mindy Kaling on a series of short videos that promote Wine-To-Go’s portability. Barefoot is the second-largest wine brand in the U.S., with more than 20 million cases depleted in 2018, according to Impact Databank.

•In July, Louisville, Kentucky-based Michter’s Distillery will release its 10-year Single Barrel Rye, selected by new master distiller Dan McKee. The whiskey is bottled at 46.4% abv and was selected in conjunction with Andrea Wilson, Michter’s master of maturation. Michter’s 10-year Single Barrel Rye will be available in very limited quantities across the U.S. for a suggested price of $160 a bottle. Due to the limited supply of aged barrels of Kentucky rye, the company anticipates that this will be the only 2019 bottling of the 10-year-old release.

•Kim Crawford has unveiled a new national marketing campaign under the tagline “Make it amazing.” Encompassing TV, digital, social media, retail displays, and experiential programming, the new positioning is aimed at the brand’s core female demographic, with the ads portraying “real-life moments shared among friends.” Meanwhile, Kim Crawford has become the official wine of the U.S. Open tennis tournament via a multi-year partnership with the United States Tennis Association. The deal includes a permanent brand presence on the grounds of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, as well as retail displays and sweepstakes. Owned by Constellation, Kim Crawford is the third-ranked imported wine brand in the U.S. by volume, up 5.1% to 1.33 million cases last year, according to Impact Databank.

•Zamora Company USA has aligned with Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits across 41 U.S. markets. Dallas-based Zamora Co. USA is a joint venture between Spain’s Zamora and Old Nassau Imports. The company’s portfolio includes Zamora’s flagship Licor 43 brand and Old Nassau’s Double Cross vodka, as well as other Zamora labels like Martin Miller’s gin, Yellow Rose whiskey, and Lolea sangria.

•Constellation has promoted Matt Deegan to senior vice president, chief sales officer, wine and spirits. Deegan will oversee the entire wine and spirits sales organization and join Constellation’s wine and spirits leadership team, reporting directly to Robert Hanson, executive vice president and president, wine and spirits. Deegan joined Constellation in 2016 as senior vice president of sales, following tenures with Beam Suntory and Southern Glazer’s.

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