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News Briefs for September 5, 2019

September 5, 2019

•Brown-Forman has announced the return of Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Malt, which was introduced last year and sold out within a month. The new release has an abv of 45.2% and carries a retail price of $35 a 750-ml. The Woodford Reserve portfolio currently includes five expressions: Woodford Reserve Bourbon, Woodford Reserve Double Oaked, Woodford Reserve Rye, and Woodford Reserve Wheat, which was released earlier in the summer.

•Edrington has released the latest Highland Park limited release in the U.S., Twisted Tattoo, a 16-year-old whisky. The 46.7% abv whisky is blended from spirits matured in Rioja-seasoned casks as well as ex-Bourbon barrels. The final blend was assembled from 153 Rioja-seasoned casks and 70 ex-Bourbon barrels to create a release that is lightly smoky and driven by sweet fruit flavors, according to the company. The whisky is bottled with a custom label created by Danish tattoo artist Colin Dale. Highland Park Twisted Tattoo is now available in select locations across the U.S. for a suggested price of $100.

•Campari Group has signed an agreement to acquire French rum brands Trois Rivières and La Mauny. The company, which announced it was in talks for the brands in July, struck the deal with Groupe Chevrillon, a privately held French investment company, for a price of €60 million ($66.3m). Campari is already present in the rum category with Appleton, which has U.S. volume of 225,000 cases and global volume of 1.2 million cases. With this deal, Campari adds two premium rhum agricole labels with a presence in France, and it sees international potential in both of them. The agreement also included local brand Duquesne.

•Larceny Bourbon has released an augmented reality smartphone app called Unlock the Rickhouse. Now through the end of the year, consumers can use the app to explore virtual rickhouses for a chance to win a $10,000 grand prize and other goodies. The concept was inspired by the brand’s historical mascot John E. Fitzgerald, a treasury agent who used his authority to help himself to the choicest products in the rickhouses under his purview. Part of Bardstown, Kentucky-based Heaven Hill’s portfolio, Larceny Bourbon is at 46% abv and retails for $25 a 750-ml. Last year, Larceny depleted 103,000 cases in the U.S., up 21%, according to Impact Databank.

•Folio Wine Fine Partners has added three new wine producers—from the Rhone Valley, South Africa, and the Languedoc region—to its international portfolio. From the Rhone, Folio has partnered with Ogier to the producers Côtes du Rhone, Cote Rotie, and Châteauneuf-du-Pape to the U.S. The Napa, California-based company has also agreed to handle Château Puech-Haut from the Languedoc region and will import the producer’s Prestige Rosé and Rouge, as well as Tête de Belier Rosé, Blanc, and Rogue, among others. Finally, Folio has teamed up with South Africa’s L’Avenir from Stellenbosch to bring Provenance Chenin Blanc and Pinotage, as well as Single Block Chenin Blanc and Pinotage.

•Houston, Texas-based importer BCI is launching New Grove, a rum brand from the African island nation of Mauritius. The brand’s Exotic line includes New Grove Silver, Dark, and Spiced expressions, and the Authentic line includes an assortment of unaged and French oak aged offerings. New Grove’s lineup is now available in select markets across the U.S., with the Exotic line retailing between $15-$19 a 750-ml. and Authentic expressions ranging from $25-$57 a 750-ml. New Grove is part of the Terra Group, owned and operated by the Harel family since 1838.

•Republic National Distributing Company (RNDC) has extended its partnership with California winemaker O’Neill Vintners & Distillers into four states: Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Indiana. RNDC now represents the full O’Neill Vintners portfolio, including Line 39, Intercept, Robert Hall, Day Owl, Harken, and Exitus, in 17 states.

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