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

News Briefs for October 7, 2021

October 7, 2021

•William Grant & Sons, through its Private Clients business, has donated three extremely rare lots to the upcoming Distillers One of One auction, benefiting Scottish charities. The first, Glenfiddich: The 1950s, consists of four whiskies—distilled in 1955, 1957, 1958, and 1959—bottled in crystal decanters and housed in a cabinet made by the Queen’s royal warrant holding cabinet maker, NEJ Stevenson. William Grant has also donated Ladyburn 1966 David Bailey one-off John Lennon Edition, a single bottle featuring a portrait of the Beatle. Finally, the company contributed The Balvenie 1964 Single Bottle Release, bottled in a crystal decanter with a handmade calligraphic label. The six bottles are expected to fetch at least £285,000 (roughly $387,000) at the auction, created by the Worshipful Company of Distillers.

•Oregon’s Domaine Serene has forged a partnership with the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers beginning with the upcoming 2021-2022 season. In addition to being recognized at the Trail Blazers’ “Luxury Wine of Choice,” Domaine Serene is launching a new 7,500 square-foot hospitality area in the Moda Center, the Domaine Serene Wine Studios. That space will showcase large-format bottles, winery and vineyard photography, and player-signed bottles and jerseys, while featuring premier views of the Moda Center court. Domaine Serene’s Oregon Pinot Noirs, Chardonnay, and Rosé will also be available by-the-glass and by-the-bottle to guests in all luxury suites at the arena.

•Republic National Distributing Co. (RNDC) has added the Unity brand to its CBD beverage portfolio. Infused with 30mg of CBD as well as adaptogens such as Ashwagandha, Rhodiola Rosea, and Ginkgo Biloba, each 14-ounce bottle has 30 calories and 7 grams of sugar. Flavors include Blueberry Lavender, Strawberry Lemonade, Blood Orange Hibiscus, Elderflower Rose, Ginger Lemonade, and Blackberry Tea. Unity is currently in 1,500 stores after launching 18 months ago, and will now look to scale further through RNDC’s network.

•California winemaker Iron Side Cellars is launching a Bourbon Barrel Aged Red Blend. The blend features Merlot and Petite Sirah grapes grown primarily in the Lake County AVA and aged in Bourbon barrels sourced from Kentucky. It’s Iron Side Cellars’ first Bourbon barrel-aged offering. Available this month at retailers in 14 states, it’s priced at $15 a bottle and joins the company’s flagship Cabernet Sauvignon along with Reserve Chardonnay and Reserve Pinot Noir. Founded in 2011, Iron Side Cellars wines are made in partnership with Latitude Beverage.

•Phillips Distilling has officially launched Cubist, a new vodka brand intended to be stored in the freezer. Beginning this month, Cubist is being test marketed in Minnesota and Arizona with an expanded launch slated for 2022. Thermochromic ink technology turns the brand’s bottle label blue when the liquid has reached optimal temperature. Aimed at males aged 26-45, Cubist will retail at $25 a 750-ml.

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