Sweet Reds, New Whiskys, And Starbucks Is Going Starbooze

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Sweet Red Wines

W.J. Deutsch & Sons says it will launch a new extension to its Yellow Tail wine brand, Sweet Red Roo, this March. The new addition, the 15th wine in the Yellow Tail portfolio, is a blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and other red varietals. “Sweet Red Roo is the nexus of two categories on fire with consumers right now—sweet wine and red blends,” said Francois Magnant, Yellow Tail’s brand director, noting a 246% jump in sweet wines’ dollar value in 2011 according to Nielsen, and SymphonyIRI numbers showing sales of more than half a million cases of sweet reds across the U.S. market last year.  Yellow Tail remains the top-selling imported wine brand in the U.S. by a wide margin and in the top five wine brands overall at over 8.3 million cases.

New Scotch

Glenmorangie will add a new whisky, Glenmorangie Artein, to its Private Edition series beginning February 1. Artein (which is Gaelic for “stone”) is a 46%-abv blend of 15- and 21-year-old whiskies extra matured in Super Tuscan wine casks. The name refers both to the layers of limestone through which Glenmorangie’s water source, Tarlogie Spring, filters, as well as the stony soils from which Italy’s Super Tuscans are crafted. Artein ($79.99 a bottle) is the third offering in the brand’s Private Edition series. It follows Glenmorangie Sonnalta PX, extra matured in Pedro Ximenez sherry casks; and Glenmorangie Finealta, a recreation of an early recipe from the Glenmorangie archives, both of which are now sold out.

New French Whisky

Palm Bay International is introducing a new super-premium French whisky, Bastille 1789, in the U.S. market. Created by Jean-Marc Daucourt (known for creating X-Rated Fusion liqueur among others), the malt and wheat for Bastille 1789 is sourced from northeast France. The whisky is distilled in alembic pot stills and aged for five to seven years in a combination of French oak, cherry wood and acacia casks. Bastille 1789 is rolling out this month in Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C. at around $29.99 a bottle. It’s slated to hit nationwide distribution this May.

Starbucks Getting Boozey…can’t wait

Starbucks plans to expand its evening wine, beer and premium food program to locations in Atlanta, Southern California and Chicago by the end of this year. Under the concept, which began at Starbucks locations in the Pacific Northwest in 2010, the company offers local wine and beer options, as well as snacks, small plates and hot flatbreads. The concept is expected to roll out in five to seven Chicago locations and four to six locations in both Atlanta and Southern California. The company wishes to create a “warm and inviting place” for customers to come and “unwind and connect with the people they care about,” according to senior vice president of U.S. Operations Clarice Turner.

Sources: Shanken News Daily and Reuters

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