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

News Briefs for July 1, 2020

July 1, 2020

•Bread & Butter, part of the WX Brands portfolio, is adding a Sauvignon Blanc to its lineup. Carrying a North Coast AVA appellation, the new entry retails at $15 a 750-ml. and joins Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Rosé in the brand’s portfolio. An Impact “Hot Brand,” Bread & Butter leapt by 53% last year to nearly 470,000 cases and has continued to surge this year, according to WX Brands president and CEO Peter Byck.

•Plantation Rum has announced that its brand name will evolve, after listening to and reflecting on discourses about race throughout the world. The company recognizes that the word “plantation” can have a negative connotation and will work with its stakeholders on the change, with additional details forthcoming. Made at the West Indies Rum Distillery and part of the Maison Ferrand portfolio, Plantation will see no changes to its rum production methods, even as its branding undergoes a major overhaul.

•Volley, a new Tequila-based hard seltzer, has launched in New York, New Jersey, and Florida. The 5.25% abv seltzers come in four flavors—Zesty Lime, Spicy Ginger, Sharp Grapefruit, and Tropical Mango—and are made with three ingredients: Tequila, sparkling water, and organic juice. Each 12-ounce serving contains between 100 and 110 calories. At retail, 4-packs (variety and single flavor) are available for around $12 and individual cans sell for $3. Beyond off-premise availability, Volley is available to order online across the U.S.

•California-based grocery chain Raley’s has opened a new upscale store called Raley’s O-N-E Market. Located in Truckee, California, the 35,000-square-foot location is styled after a ski lodge and focuses on service, education, and a highly curated product selection. The store’s loft includes a beer and wine bar that serves local craft beers and wines curated by director of alcohol and beverage Curtis Mann. Raley’s does over $3 billion in annual revenue, according to Forbes.

•Rudy Ruiz, executive vice president of emerging spirits brands at Southern Glazer’s, is leaving the company July 3. He will become managing director at industry advisory firm Park Street, which specializes in providing solutions to emerging and established beverage alcohol companies. Ruiz has been with Southern Glazer’s since 2003, which followed nearly 25 years with Bacardi USA. Ray Lombard, executive vice president of supplier management and business development, will take over Ruiz’s duties at SGWS following his departure.

•Mizkan America, the Illinois-based condiments, sauces, and foods company whose portfolio includes North American rights to the Angostura bitters brand, has expanded its U.S. distribution agreement with Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits (SGWS) for Angostura. Effective August 1, SGWS will distribute Angostura in an additional 19 U.S. markets, extending the partnership to a total of 32 states in addition to Washington, D.C.

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