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

Exclusive: California Wines, Sparklers Lead The Way Among Impact’s “Hot Brands”

March 22, 2022

A total of 35 wine labels earned Impact “Hot Brand” awards this year across the domestic and import categories. Representing the fastest-growing players in the wine world, the winners are led by premium California offerings on the domestic side and a variety of sparkling wines on the import side. They range in size from Stella Rosa at 7.25 million cases to Cupcake LightHearted at 250,000 cases.

To qualify as an Impact Hot Brand, a contender must have shown double-digit growth in each year from 2019-2021, or be an established player with at least 15% growth in 2021, or else be a top 10 brand with at least 5% growth in 2021 and 15% growth since 2018. The minimum volume requirement for spirits and imported wines is 200,000 cases, while domestic wines and RTDs must meet a threshold of 250,000 cases.

Twenty-four domestic wine labels qualified as Hot Brands this year. The vast majority hail from California, with only four entrants coming from other regions. In addition to Californian dominance and in contrast to imports, the list skews heavily toward still wine rather than sparklers. Overall, the domestic Hot Brands list comprises 18 California table wines, one California sparkler, one New York sparkler, one Washington table wine, one Indiana table wine, a New Mexico sparkler, and a California non-alcoholic brand.

Impact’s imported wine Hot Brands roster features 11 entries this year, with sparkling wines comprising half the list. The award winners showcase a diverse range of origins, and include three brands each from France and Italy, as well as fast-rising labels from Spain, Australia, and New Zealand.

Domestic wine Hot Brands above 700,000 cases include Josh Cellars, Bota Box Nighthawk, William Wycliff, Decoy by Duckhorn, Barefoot Fruitscato, Bread & Butter, Canyon Road, Oliver, and J. Roget. Imported wine Hot Brands above 700,000 cases include Stella Rosa, La Marca, 19 Crimes, Kim Crawford, Santa Margherita, and Luc Belaire.

The full list, along with comprehensive data and analysis, appears in Impact’s March 1&15 issue. Click here to subscribe.

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