Cheers April/May 2018

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 45 of 59 46 • April/May 2018 the fi rst wine brands to launch a loyalty program of this caliber," Schoenberg says. "We have some very exciting, high-value rewards in the works for the coming year." Mionetto prosecco from Mionetto USA has increased sales steadily, from 499,000 cases in 2014 to 680,000 last year. Beyond tapping into the red-hot trend of sparkling wine, the brand reached consumers through multiple effective marketing campaigns in 2017, according to Greg Berumen, director of marketing for Mionetto USA. For instance, Mionetto's "Bucket of Bubbles" program distributed 187-ml. bottles of its Prestige Collection, including Prosecco Treviso DOC, rosé and moscato, to encourage on-premise trial. At the retail level, "Style Your Prosecco" encouraged consumers to keep their prosecco cool with frozen juice cubes. This included cube tray VAPs, which also complemented the "Cocktail Challenge" promotion. The "Pink Cork for the Cause" program took place in September and October, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness. And holiday-branded gift boxes wrapped up the year of promotions for Mionetto. Chateau d'Esclans from Shaw Ross International Importers has shown dramatic growth. The brand's sale's have risen from 76,000 cases in 2014 to 118,000 in 2015 and 200,000 in 2016. Chateau d'Esclans reached 315,000 in 2017—a 57.7% increase over the previous year. The brand's mega-hit Whispering Angel rosé is a big part of this success. "Whispering Angel is leading the Nielsen ratings for French wine over the $20 price point," says Paul Chevalier, Shaw-Ross national fi ne wine director. "From what we are seeing in summer destinations like the Hamptons or Nantucket, rosé is the new Champagne. I believe that premium rosé is starting to erode the traditional sparkling wine category–especially with Millennials." Marketing wise, Shaw-Ross hosts or cosponsors "over 400 events a year with Château D'Esclans in the U.S., including the largest rosé festival in the country called Pinknic," Chevalier says. "It is our vocation to continue to educate Americans about quality rosé from Provence and carry the rosé fl ag in a sort of 'town hall' marketing strategy." RISING STAR POWER A number of new brands have made a splash in recent years. Several have earned Rising Star Awards this year as a result. Strawberry Sparkletini from Carriage House Imports has grown from 5,000 cases in 2014 to 125,000 in 2017. "We've had a lot of success with digital couponing apps like Ibotta," says Michael Aarons, director of marketing and brand development for Carriage House Imports. That offering has helped the brand acquire new customers. "In 2018 we're focusing on expanding our on-premise footprint, our cost-per-ounce, our resealable cork closure and having a variety of fl avors," Aarons adds. "We're looking to capture a bigger brunch account in college communities, targeting the success of the classic Mimosa." Chloe from The Wine Group, which had sold 97,000 cases back in 2014, reached 325,000 cases in 2017—a 12.1% increase over 2016 sales. Kimberly Fabbri, marketing director for The Wine Group, points to the brand's price-to-quality ratio. "Chloe's pinot grigio is grown in Northern Italy's Valdadige DOC, the same sourcing as competitors that sell for twice as much on a list," she says. "Our new Central Coast rosé continues to win in blind tastings against more expensive rosés from California and Provence." The Wine Group launched Chloe rosé into select markets in 2016 "and were well positioned to expand nationally in 2017 as the rosé trend hit full steam," Fabbri explains. The Wine Group believes that merlot is on the cusp of a comeback. The company introduced Chloe merlot this past August. Fabbri also reports success from the brand's partnership as a sponsor of the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival, which it will repeat in 2018. Rabble Wine from Rabble Wine Co. has more than doubled in size since 2014, totaling 51,000 2018 Growth Brands wine 2018 Growth Brands wine Wine Comeback Brands (000 9-liter cases) '16-'17 Brand Supplier 2014 2015 2016 2017p % Change Gnarly Head DFV Wines 712 695 687 716 4.2% Carnivor E&J Gallo Winery 250 375 350 382 9.1% Black Stallion DFV Wines 50 42 60 68 13.3% Source: The Beverage Information & Insights Group (p) Preliminary. (000 9-liter cases) '16-'17 Brand Supplier 2014 2015 2016 2017p % Change Gnarly Head DFV Wines 712 695 687 716 4.2%

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