Posted on | May 2, 2012
Written by | BevNetwork
|CHILLING POWER: IT’S IN THE BAG
As thoughts turn to al fresco fun, accessories that make beverage-chillin’ easier are definitely in season. Phoenix-based BellaVita Bags is offering a wide range of reusable, gel-filled “Chill It” bags, designed to pop into a freezer and become great outdoor carriers—for wine and more. With a variety of colors and styles with wholesale pricing starting at $3.49, these make great summer impulse buys.
|SKINNYGIRL TAKES AIM AT WINE
Having proved to be a gamechanger in cocktails, Skinnygirl is ready to apply Bethenny Frankel’s winning touch to wine, which happens to be the beverage alcohol category that women consume most. The brand’s first offerings—California White Blend, California Red Blend and California Rosé—check in at 100 calories per 5 oz. serving, which is 15% lower than other wines, based on USDA standards. Each blend is fruitforward and pleasantly drinkable with a definitive wine profile. SRP: $14.99.
KOBRAND REACHES HIGH WITH ALTA VISTA
Kobrand is embracing America’s blossoming Malbec romance, adding Bodega Alta Vista to its portfolio. Officially launching in July, the brand will cover multiple price points. Alta Vista Classic (SRP $11.99) will include fresh, fruit-forward Malbec, Cabernet and Chardonnay. Alta Vista Premium ($19.99) includes Malbec, Cabernet and Torrontes from the highest-elevation terroirs. A Terroir Selection ($29.99) and three Single Vineyard ($49.99) wines will focus strictly on old-vine Malbec. “Alto” (70% Malbec; $89.99) is a benchmark for luxury wines, produced only in the best years. Founded in 1997 by the d’Aulan family, former owners of Champagne Piper-Heidsieck, the mission of Alta Vista is to express Argentina’s best sites and varietals. In spanning several price tiers, Alta Vista may well redefine the entire category.
|RESTAURANTS TARGETED FOR HIGH-PROFILE LAUNCHES
Remember when mere placement on certain wine lists was a major honor? Two special releases suggest the luster of on-premise may be back. Eroica—the partnership between Chateau Ste. Michelle of Washington and Dr. Loosen of the Mosel—has rereleased its 2007 Riesling in select markets—only to restaurants. The idea is to showcase Eroica’s distinct ageability, and the winery plans to make this an annual program, releasing each new Eroica vintage along with a 5-yearold one. Markets able to get the cellared Eroicas are New York, Washington DC, Miami, Dallas, Houston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Seattle, Portland and Northern and Southern California.
Meanwhile, Ruth’s Chris is partnering with Penfolds for the exclusive U.S. release of the 2007 Penfolds Grange Shiraz. The revered Aussie red will debut at five-course Penfolds wine dinners at 59 locations on May 1st. Pricing varies by market ($165 per guest), but the menu at each will be the same, with the Grange being served with a surf & turf combo of filet mignon and crab-stuffed lobster tail.