Exclusive news and research on the wine, spirits and beer business

News Briefs for May 5, 2020

May 5, 2020

•Michigan consumers looking to stock up on wine during the pandemic should not look to out-of-state stores, even if local shops don’t carry the wines they want. A three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has ruled that a Michigan law allowing in-state retailers to sell wine online and ship to consumers while barring out-of-state merchants from doing the same is constitutional. The decision overturns a district court decision from 2018. Wine Spectator has the full story.

•Republic National Distributing Co. (RNDC) is adding the Conecuh Brands portfolio to its offerings in Florida and South Carolina effective June 1. Conecuh, whose brands include Clyde May’s Whiskey, Prospero Tequila, and McConnell’s Irish Whisky, is already handled by RNDC in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, and Washington, D.C.

•San Francisco, California-based Hotaling & Co. has reintroduced Hirsch Bourbon, unveiling the first in what the company promises will be a series of new whiskies. The 46% abv Bourbon, named The Horizon, is blended from two whiskies distilled in Lawrenceburg, Indiana; 94% of the blend is a 5-year-old corn-heavy whiskey and the remainder is a high-rye Bourbon aged for 6 years. Hirsch The Horizon will be available this summer in California, Texas, Illinois, Massachusetts, Tennessee, New York, Kentucky, and Georgia for a suggested price of $40 a 750-ml.

•Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits has launched the second edition of Josh Cellars Lodi Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. The release is a partnership between the company and Operation Gratitude, a non-profit serving military members, veterans, and first responders. For each bottle of the Lodi Reserve sold, Deutsch will donate $1 to Operation Gratitude. Josh Cellars Lodi Reserve is now available for a limited time across the U.S. for a suggested price of $20 a 750-ml. Josh Cellars neared 3.2 million cases last year, rising 26%, according to Impact Databank.

•Infinium Spirits-owned Templeton Rye has announced the 2020 release of the brand’s cask strength whiskey. This year’s rye comes in at 56.55% abv and is made from MGP’s 95% rye, 5% malted barley mash bill. Templeton Rye Barrel Strength Straight whiskey is now available across the U.S. in limited quantities at $60 a 750-ml. Last year, Templeton depleted 63,000 cases in the U.S., according to Impact Databank.

•High Noon hard seltzer, part of the E.&J. Gallo portfolio, is adding Lime and Peach flavors to its range this month. The High Noon flavors are available in 4-packs, 8-packs, and 12-packs, priced at $2.50 for single cans, $10 for 4-packs, $19 for 8-packs, and $28 for 12-packs. A variety 8-pack will be added in June.

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