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News Briefs for January 29, 2020

January 29, 2020

•It was a crimson tide last week in California’s Sonoma County, as a 100,000-gallon blending tank at Rodney Strong Winery in Healdsburg spilled thousands of gallons of Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon into the nearby Russian River, coloring the riverbanks red. Winery officials indicated that cleanup efforts are ongoing, and that they are investigating what appears to have been a mechanical failure. Wine Spectator has more.

•RumChata is extending its range with a new Limón expression. Retailing at $20 a 750-ml., the newcomer is a blend of Caribbean rum with dairy cream, vanilla, and lemon, packaged in a bright yellow version of the RumChata bottle. Designed to be served on the rocks, in hot or cold coffee, or in cocktails, RumChata Limón will roll out nationally by April, backed with a TV, print, and social media campaign. RumChata was up 2% to 475,000 cases last year.

•California-based WX Brands has acquired the Niven Family Wine Estates portfolio. The sale includes the Tangent, Baileyana, and Zocker wine brands from the Edna Valley, as well as the True Myth label, sourced from the Central Coast. Altogether, the acquired brands total above 100,000 cases. Additionally, WX will now run and manage the Baileyana tasting room in San Luis Obispo. WX Brands also owns the Bread & Butter Wines, Jamieson Ranch Vineyards, Jelly Jar Wines, Our Daily Wines, Reckless Love, and Sunday Funday brands, and is a large producer of private labels for retailers.

•Washington-based Wines of Substance has named Philip Tardy senior vice president of sales. In his new role, Tardy will oversee the K Vintners, Sixto, Vino, CasaSmith, Substance, B. Leighton, and Popup brands. He comes to Wines of Substance from Terlato Wines International, where he served as vice president of sales. Winemaker Charles Smith established Wines of Substance in Walla Walla in 1999.

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