Cheers - March/April 2016

Cheers is dedicated to delivering hospitality professionals the information, insights and data necessary to drive their beverage business by covering trends and innovations in operations, merchandising, service and training.

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Page 39 of 59 40 • March/April 2016 like our 90+ Cellars sauvignon blanc, when it comes time for them to choose a California cabernet, they are willing to give ours a try because we've earned their trust," explains Brett Vankoski, vice president of supplier Latitude Beverage Co. Another trend working in the favor of 90+ Cellars is that the $10 to $20 price wine category is growing in popularity. "90+ Cellars aims to offer the best value for wines priced in this range," Vankoski adds. UNIQUE BRAND ENHANCERS Rising Star Freakshow pushed its unique branding as it doubled its cases sold from 44,000 in 2014 to 88,000 last year. This included a 6-ft.-tall "strong man" POS stand-up poster, and coffi n-inspired displays. Melissa Phillips Stroud, vice president of sales and marketing for supplier Michael David Winery, also believes Freakshow has grown because "distributors have really gotten behind the brand. They talk about it, take it to parties and help show it off." Terlato Wines scored another Rising Star Growth Brand this year for The Federalist, a colonial-themed wine that found fans among Millennial males. In particular, the brand benefi ted from an app with which users could "Federalize" themselves in the style of The Federalist label art, and share messages with their friends. Other marketing by The Federalist for Millennial men included traditional advertising, from fi ne wine media to more target-centric outlets such CNN, GQ and ESPN. Something worked: The brand's sales shot up from 21,000 cases in 2014 to 110,000 last year—a 423.8% gain. Santa Julia made our Growth Brands list in 2016 with a Comeback Award. After dipping to 147,000 cases in 2014, from 158,000 cases sold in 2013 and 162,000 in 2012, the Argentine wine brand rebounded last year with 183,000 cases. New packaging likely played a role in the turnaround. A redesigned label for Santa Julia Reserva "aimed to show the essence of the mountains of the Uco Valley in Mendoza," explains Jordan Sager, vice president of supplier Winesellers, Ltd. Further tapping into the trends of authenticity and variety, the brand released Santa Julia Reserva Mountain. This line, launched exclusively for upscale grocer Whole Foods, "brought awareness of other unique varietals within the region," Sager says. "The program was a huge success." 2016 GROWTH BRAND AWARDS WINE COMEBACK BRANDS: WINES Winners must be a previous Growth Brands Award winner, and must have exceeded the sales from their previous win following a recent decline. % Growth Brand Supplier 2012 2013 2014 2015 p 2014/15 Chateau Ste. Michelle Ste. Michelle Wine Estates 2,780 2,753 3,035 3,253 7.2% J. Lohr Estates J. Lohr Wines 1,219 1,439 1,406 1,439 2.3% Freixenet Freixenet USA 530 519 541 560 3.5% Santa Julia Winesellers, Ltd. 162 158 147 183 24.5% La Fiera Winesellers, Ltd. 54 49 61 65 7.3% (p) Preliminary Source: The Beverage Information & Insights Group. For more data, visit Q&A with LUNETTA PROSECCO Sparkling wine benefi ted in 2015 from the popularity of prosecco. And brands such as Lunetta prosecco—which grew 15% last year and won a Fast Track Award—led the way. We caught up with the Palm Bay International brand team to learn more. Cheers: What is behind the prosecco boom? PB: Value. Approachability/accessibility. Italian intrigue. Cheers: Does Lunetta's price point intend to capture a certain demographic? PB: We think Lunetta appeals to a wide demographic. The price is consumer-friendly, and the new package lends a premium look while still feeling approachable. Cheers: How does Lunetta position itself more as an everyday wine, not just for celebrations? PB: Through our use of cocktails. Over this summer, we will be promoting cocktail booklets on the bottles that feature over 10 recipes, as well as savings on mix components. Cheers: What's next for Lunetta? PB: Next for Lunetta will be the launch of our Sparkling Rosé. This taps into two of the hottest categories in the wine industry. (thousands of 9-liter cases)

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