This October, 19 Crimes and Universal Monsters joined forces to introduce limited-edition wines just in time for Halloween, while Heaven’s Door paid homage to Bob Dylan’s Minnesota roots with “Homesick Blues,” a seven-year-aged bourbon bundled with a copy of Dylan’s original handwritten lyrics. Below is Park Street’s full product release recap from October 2023.
October 2023 Alcohol Industry Launch Recap
19 Crimes and Universal Monsters Unleashed Limited-Edition Halloween Wines
19 Crimes teams up with Universal Monsters to introduce two limited-edition wines, Red Blend and Cabernet Sauvignon, featuring the classic horror monsters Dracula and Frankenstein, for this year’s Holloween season. The Dracula Red Blend delivers sweet aromatics with notes of chocolate, while Frankenstein Cabernet features aromatics of dark berries, violets, and vanilla. Both offerings are 13.5% AVB and packaged in collectible 19 Crimes Halloween bottles.
“19 Crimes and Universal Monsters is the perfect collaboration for Halloween and an opportunity to introduce 19 Crimes to brand new enthusiasts,” explained Treasury Americas Chief Marketing Officer, Carl Evans. “You’ll be able to hear Dracula and Frankenstein come to life on the label through augmented reality, inviting people to experience wine in a rebellious but fun and engaging way, which is the heart of 19 Crimes.” (Source)
Heaven’s Door Announced the Release of “Homesick Blues” Minnesota Wheated Bourbon
American Whiskey brand Heaven’s Door Spirits is dropping a Minnesota wheated bourbon, Homesick Blues. The brand’s latest offering is bottled at a cask-strength proof of 122.7 and aged for seven years. It has a velvety texture and a creamy smoothness created by the addition of wheat. The release also features a book and bottle bundle with Bob Dylan’s original handwritten lyrics to Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door.
Marc Bushala, Co-Founder and CEO of Heaven’s Door Spirits, noted “We are thrilled to introduce ‘Homesick Blues,’ a heartfelt tribute to Bob Dylan’s Minnesota roots and his journey to find home. This unique limited release expression stays true to Dylan’s desire to create a collection of whiskeys which each tell their own story.” (Source)
Molson Coors Unveiled Non-Carbonated RTD
Molson Coors Beverage Company is gearing up to roll out a new line of non-carbonated RTD in the first quarter of 2024. The soon-to-release Happy Thursday line is a spiked refresher that comes with four fruity flavors: Strawberry, Pineapple Starfruit, Black Cherry, and Mango Passionfruit. Each flavor is formulated with 4.4% AVB in 12-ounce cans that target Gen Z drinkers.
“We believe Happy Thursday is everything these consumers are looking for in a spiked refresher: they’re smooth, bubble-free, flavorful, and, of course, refreshing,” said Amanda Devore, Senior Director for Marketing Innovation at Molson Coors in the press release.
“Happy Thursday is really a product inspired by its target audience,” Devore added. “We were able to go really deep with them, giving them something they’re really excited about.” (Source)
Tequila Komos Launched XO, Exclusive Single Batch Expression
Luxury tequila brand Komos is adding a limited-edition single batch expression to its tequila collection, Komos XO. The new expression has been aged in American oak bourbon barrels and French oak red and white wine barrels then finished in Spanish Oloroso Sherry casks. Bottled at a cask strength of 42% AVB, it delivers aromas of chocolate, vanilla, toast, and hints of smokiness that meet a textured palate of dried fruits. Available in a 750-mL etched crystal decanter bottle for an SRP of $1,999 at the Komos website and in boutique bottle shops across the globe.
“The launch of XO serves as a true celebration of the craftsmanship, innovation, and technique that has formed Komos into the global brand it is today,” said Richard Betts, Co-Founder and Co-CEO. “From a craft perspective, Komos much more resembles a wine company than a typical spirits company. For example, having hand-picked every single barrel used to create XO, I am proud to say that our latest expression is the absolute pinnacle of aged tequila, masterfully designed to elevate any occasion.” (Source)
Coca-Cola, Pernod Ricard Partnered Together for Absolut-Sprite RTD Cocktail
Soft drink giant Coca-Cola continues its expansion in the alcohol category as it joins forces with Pernod Ricard to introduce Absolut Vodka & Sprite. This ready-to-drink pre-mixed cocktail is set to be released later next year, aiming to enter select countries in Europe. The Absolut Vodka & Sprite is 5% ABV and available in Sprite and Sprite Zero Sugar varieties.
“We keep consumers at the center of everything we do as we continue to develop our portfolio as a total beverage company,” said Coca‑Cola’s Chairman and CEO James Quincey in a statement. “We are expanding in the alcohol ready-to-drink space, including products that use select brands from our core portfolio. We are excited about our new relationship with Pernod Ricard and look forward to the introduction of Absolut & Sprite.” (Source)
Issa Rae and E. & J. Gallo Introduced Prosecco Brand Viarae
Actress, producer, and writer Issa Rae entered the wine business by introducing Viarae, a new Prosecco brand made in collaboration with E. & J. Gallo Winery. The Viarae Prosecco delivers a crisp, lively, and refined take on the classic sparkling wine. The offering is available nationally through select retailers and on-premises establishments with an SRP of $19.
“We are excited to partner with Issa Rae, who entrusted us with executing her vision of the perfect Prosecco — one that shares our desire to serve joy in everyday moments,” said Beth Orozco, Vice President of Marketing for E. & J. Gallo Winery. “Issa also shares our mission to demystify wine and make it more inclusive. Viarae will help us reach that goal,” she added. (Source)
Sonoma-Cutrer Unveiled New Vintages of Sonoma Coast Chardonnay, the Cutrer Chardonnay and Russian River Valley Pinot Noir
California-based winery Sonoma-Cutrer has announced three new vintage wines featuring Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes. The 13.9% AVB Sonoma Coast Chardonnay has aromas of stone fruit, oak spice, hints of clove and caramel, toasted nuts, and light honeydew. Joining the vintage release is The Cutrer Chardonnay, formulated with 14.1% AVB and flavors of baked apple and pear, toasted oak, roasted nuts, and baking spice. Lastly, the Russian River Valley Pinot Noir delivers notes of red berries, cranberry, cherry cola, savory spices, a hint of black tea, and fresh earth, as well as sweet, spicy vanilla from the oak barrel aging.
“With such unique weather and already diverse soil types and growing conditions, these new vintages of Sonoma Coast, The Cutrer and Russian River Valley Pinot Noir are sure to be exceptional members of the Sonoma-Cutrer lineup,” said Director of Winemaking Cara Morrison. Senior Winemaker Zidanelia Arcidiacono added, “Each of these wines are distinctly different while also highlighting the consistency that Sonoma-Cutrer is known for.” (Source)
Diageo Introduced The Cocktail Collection RTD Set, Including Ketel One and Tanqueray
Diageo is expanding its line of RTD cocktails by introducing The Cocktail Collection, which features three new pre-mixed cocktails. The Cocktail Collection includes Ketel One Vodka Espresso Martini, Ketel One Vodka Cosmopolitan, and Tanqueray Gin Negroni. The new offering will join last year’s released cocktails: Bulleit Manhattan and Bulleit Old Fashioned. The 20% AVB collection is offered in four-can 350ml packages with an SRP of $13.99 and an eight-serving 750ml with an SRP of $25.99.
“Cocktail culture continues to flourish, so it’s only natural that consumers are looking to bring elevated drink experiences into their homes,” said Nikhil Shah, Brand Director at Diageo. “But making cocktails at home, and doing it well, can be challenging for the less experienced bartender. The Cocktail Collection is here to alleviate those concerns with convenient, bar-quality cocktails from trusted brands, offering a wonderful new way to enjoy holiday celebrations together this year.” (Source)
El Tesoro Tequila Introduced Mundial: Knob Creek Rye Edition
Beam Suntory’s tequila brand El Tesoro has unveiled its new añejo expression, El Tesoro Mundial: Knob Creek Rye Edition, the second release in the Mundial Collection. The añejo expression is the first and only El Tesoro that is 12-month cask finished, using barrels that originally held Knob Creek rye for seven years. The Knob Creek Rye Edition is offered at the suggested retail price of $175 per 750 ml. bottle.
“We are thrilled to introduce this exceptional new tequila, produced at our home in La Alteña with barrels so generously provided in the spirit of innovation by our friends at Knob Creek,” said Jenny Camarena, third-generation family proprietor and Master of Operations for El Tesoro. “My brother Carlos and I are the students of our father and grandfather before us, who were both proud tequila traditionalists, yet pioneers of their time who were always experimenting. The Mundial series allows us to pursue these creative paths in tequila, and the Knob Creek Rye Edition is no different.” (Source)
Tequila Ocho Launched Second Edition of Overproof Plata “Puntas”
Tequila Ocho has introduced its second edition of Overproof Plata “Puntas”. A blend of two high-proof cuts, Plata Puntas 2023 reaches 106-proof. The brand’s new overproof expression is made of agaves harvested from Rancho Mesa Colorada, and delivers a hint of residual sweetness on the palate. The offering is available in select U.S. states in a 750-ml bottle and offered for SRP: $74.99.
Tequila Ocho Co-Founder Carlos Camarena commented, “Puntas is an expression which, because of the high proof of the spirit, we could only make available for sale at our distillery. After we finally bottled and released it in early 2022, it was so well-received that we knew we had to create a second bottling for tequila aficionados. The 2023 Tequila Ocho Puntas, from Rancho Mesa Colorada, is bottled at 53% abv. The higher proof of this year’s bottling carries an extremely high concentration of agave flavor, making Ocho Puntas perfect for tequila connoisseurs and agave spirits enthusiasts.” (Source)
Johnnie Walker Teamed Up With Honey Dijon
Johnnie Walker Blue Label has announced its collaboration with American producer and DJ Honey Dijon to introduce a new expression, the Elusive Umami, paired with a new track release. Johnnie Walker Blue Label Elusive Umami has a sweet and savory aroma, notes of blood oranges and red berries with sweet wood spices, and a long, sweet fruit finish. The new Scotch offering is 43% alcohol by volume, available globally with a suggested retail price of $369.99.
“For Johnnie Walker Blue Label Elusive Umami, only one barrel out of 25,000 made it as we carefully searched our reserves for this new delicious umami flavor profile,” added Dr. Walker. “Each expression of Scotch whiskey has been hand-picked, allowing us to bring to life the unique character of this innovative blend, which Dijon has perfectly captured in the new track – a true feast for the senses, Johnnie Walker Blue Label Elusive Umami needed the appropriate sound accompaniment. (Source)
Curius Officially Launched Match Tonic Water
Swiss drinks company Curius has announced its entrance into the soft drinks category with the release of MATCH Tonic Water. It features recycled square glass bottles collected from old wine bottles and car windscreens with unique designs and color variations. The new liquid offering consists of four tonic waters, including Indian Tonic Water, Mediterranean Tonic Water, Floral Tonic Water, and Spicy Tonic Water. Available across 14 retail markets with an RRP of $1.9 per bottle.
Alexander Curiger, Founder at Curius said, “MATCH Tonic Water is the first of our innovations to be introduced to the market, and it’s a huge opportunity for us. With the global soft drinks business valued at $805 million in 2019 and projected to reach $1-2 billion by 2027, a growth of +7% , MATCH is set to create waves within 1 a monotonous market. At Curius, we want to turn the thinking behind drinks production on its head by changing the stigma of a classic tonic water to something beyond how a product tastes. MATCH not only tastes great but it looks good too, and all without impacting its functionality and sustainability credentials.” (Source)