KRIS Wines

KRIS Winery: Branding Update on Tap

KRIS Wines is now working with Benson to refine and expand its messaging, through the Brand Messaging Plan service.

KRIS already has a lot going for it. A top three, super premium Pinot Grigio, the wines are crafted in the Italian hillside town of Montagna, where the company operates with German precision and Italian flair. The company has generations of winemakers behind it, and is best known for its alluring and recognizable package. 

The label art is the work of Riccardo Schweizer, a friend of the winery and native of northern Italy who was a student of renowned cubists Pablo Picasso and Joan Miro. The label art symbolizes the connection between nature and science in the production of delicious wine. Sun, hand, lips.

Expect to hear more from this storied label in the coming months.

Teliani Amber Blend

Georgia’s Leading Winery Taps Benson

Georgia’s top-producing winery, Teliani Valley, is focusing on expanding its current presence in the United States and making the market ‘a little more Georgian’.  

Having seen exponential growth of Georgian wine exports to the US within the past two years, Teliani is capitalizing on the momentum by tapping Benson Marketing Group to enhance its reach using digital advertising, public relations, and strategic messaging.    

Teliani Saperavi

Teliani Saperavi

“It was a natural next step for us to seek support from a US-based agency in both educating and converting potential new customers,” says Irakli Bokuchava commercial director at Teliani Valley. “Wine is at the heart of what it means to be Georgian, and we consider our wines to be ambassadors of this, so the best way to spread awareness is to expand our reach.”  

Established in 1997 in the Kakheti region, Teliani Valley is the leading Georgian winery with importation to the United States, as well as being one of the leading brands in the Georgian market and largest vineyard holders and managers in Georgia. The country’s rich culture of quality winemaking, hospitality and tradition is part of the company’s DNA. Their winemaking practices combine ancient principles with new ideas and innovative techniques to create award-winning wines.  

The United States is Teliani’s largest western market with a presence in 23 states. It has the longest tenure of any Georgian wine company on the American market.

Teliani Tsolikouri

Teliani Tsolikouri

According to data from the American Association of Wine Economists, US imports of wine from Georgia jumped nearly threefold in 2019, when measured in total dollar amounts. The category continues to increase in 2022, paving the way for Teliani to see success.

Teliani’s core products in the US are the Teliani Saperavi, Teliani Amber Blend, Glekhuri (traditional Georgian Winemaking Technique in Qvevri) and Teliani Tsolikouri. Georgian Wine House is its importer in Washington, D.C. 


Purple Brands Expands Work with Benson

Purple Brands, the red hot wine and spirits company based in Sonoma County, has expanded its marketing campaign with Benson.

In July 2021, we were retained to promote Redwood Empire Whiskey, and the launch of its first bottled-in-bond expressions. Our team generated coverage in Robb Report, Esquire, Men’s Journal, Inside Hook, Whiskey Advocate, San Francisco Chronicle, and a handful of beverage trades. (Full disclosure: we can’t take all the credit – the people, juice and packaging are world-class!)

Raeburn Winery

This year, we continued working on Redwood Empire Whiskey and, in March, added PR responsibilities for Purple Brands’ wine portfolio — including Raeburn Winery, Scattered Peaks, and Avalon — as well as social media and geo-targeted digital ads for fast-growing Raeburn Winery.

Raeburn Winery includes a top-5 ultra-premium Chardonnay, a top 8 best-selling luxury Pinot Noir, and a Vivino-favorite Rosé. The winery has earned three consecutive Impact Newsletter “Hot Prospectawards and more than 30 90+ scores, 2018-2020. If that isn’t enough, each SKU is growing faster than its respective category average, and against well-established competitors. Look for exciting announcements this fall! 

Derek Benham

About Purple Brands

Founded by Derek Benham in 2001, Purple Brands is a brand-led business with winery operations in the Russian River Valley, Sonoma County and Napa Valley; all are Certified Sustainable by the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance, an exclusive certification held by only 4 percent of California wineries. 

Purple Brands’ spirits portfolio was launched in 2015.  Redwood Empire Whiskey, inspired by Northern California’s giant redwoods, is defining what it means to be a California Whiskey. The fast-growing distillery has amassed the largest inventory of aging whiskey in the state, including a bourbon, rye, blended whiskey, and bottled-in-bond expressions.

Redwood Empire Whiskey

Redwood Empire Whiskey

Tumbler & Rocks: Benson’s First RTS Client

The RTS market is growing significantly faster than other beverage alcohol categories, according to many reports. It’s not surprising – ready-to-serve spirits provide convenience, portability, and increasing quality.

This is where Tumbler & Rocks comes in.

The craft brand is an offshoot of The Fort Distillery based in Alberta, Canada. Founded in 2018, the young company has seen very impressive consumer acceptance and sales growth. It is widely available in Western Canada. Now, the company is taking a thoughtful approach to the U.S. market and seeing steady growth in its initial markets.

And this is where Benson comes in.

We are launching a targeted digital campaign to support Tumbler & Rocks’ wholesale and retail partners, to amplify the effects of trade programming, and to encourage consumers to visit stores featuring Tumbler & Rocks. Trial to purchase to advocacy.

Depending on location, Tumbler & Rocks is available in 100ml, 120ml, and 750ml bottles. Cocktails include classics like the Margarita, Cosmo, Shaft, Old Fashioned, and more. Their motto: shake, pour, enjoy. Cheers!

Benson Expands PR, Digital Team

We are proud to add two professionals to our marketing team.

Kara Prior joined Benson in early 2022 to bolster the agency’s network of press contacts and strategic messaging. Kara’s experience spans consumer brands including Espolon Tequila, lulelemon, and Lime Scooters, among many others, and agency experience ranging from Sunshine Sachs to independent consulting. Based in Los Angeles, Kara has a B.A. in Political Science from University of Southern California.

Nicole Dickerson brings content marketing, social media, blogging, and digital marketing skills to Benson — a growing area for the agency. Nikki has been the copy writer behind a luxury wine and food tourism company, wine clubs, and her own blog, among other websites and channels. At Benson, Nikki focuses on copy writing and creative digital marketing campaigns for the agency’s clients. Nikki has a B.Sc. degree in marketing communications from San Diego State University.

Both positions are new for the agency.


Rathbone Family Partners with Benson

For many reasons, Americans tend to stereotype wines from Australia.

We hope to help change that by showcasing the quality and diversity of Aussie wines in our work with Wine Australia, as well as with our newest client, Australia’s Rathbone Wine Group.

The family-owned and managed company has tapped Benson to support distribution and sales growth in the U.S. for its three brands, exemplars of cool climate Pinot Noir (Yering Station), cool climate Shiraz (Mount Langi Ghiran), and Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon (Xanadu).

Our campaign combines digital advertising, promotion, and media coverage that support on and off premise accounts.

Here’s a summary of each Rathbone Wine Group brand:

  • Yering Station. With vines first planted in 1838, Yering Station is proudly renowned as Victoria’s first vineyard. A  jewel of the Yarra Valley, Yering Station produces world-class cool climate Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Shiraz Viognier, Cabernet Sauvignon.
  • Mount Langi Ghiran. Established in 1969, the winery is home to some of Australia’s most iconic cool climate Shiraz. Mount Langi Ghiran – translated as home of the yellow tailed black cockatoo – is set in a quintessentially Australian backdrop of the Grampians region of Victoria (pictured above).
  • XANADU. Tucked away in Australia’s southwest corner, Margaret River, Xanadu is one of the country’s most acclaimed wineries, a true reflection of its idyllic setting and poetic namesake.
Nadea Mina

Mina Joins Benson PR Team

To bolster our PR team and services, Nadea Mina joined Benson late last year in the role of Vice President.

Nadea brings a wide range of experience promoting wine and spirits — as well as CPG brands — to Benson’s PR and digital services.  

Most recently, Nadea was a V.P. at Rubenstein Communications where she handled a diverse roster of clients for national wellness, CPG, and hospitality brands. Her team managed clients included Eataly, Tate’s Bake Shop, The Russian Tea Room, and Crunch Franchise.

Prior to that she worked at Sunshine Sachs agency and Sopexa on global brands including The Family Coppola Wines, Great Women Spirits, Monkey 47, Loire Valley Wines, Aveniu Brands, Emilio Moro Wines, Rias Baixas Wines, Wines of France, and more.  

Based in New York, Nadea graduated from California Polytechnic State University with a B.S. in Journalism with Minors in Spanish and Ethnic Studies. 

Riboli Family Wines Taps Benson

We are excited to announce an expanded PR and digital marketing engagement with Riboli Family Wines, focusing especially on the company’s Riboli Estates Group of brands.

The PR campaign includes consumer and trade communications and media pitching around the REG division — including San Simeon, Maddalena, and Highlands 41, among others — as well as the broader company, Riboli Family Wines, which includes the popular Stella Rosa brand. Benson’s work with the family owned and managed company first started in 2018 with the completion of brand messaging projects for the company’s REG portfolio.

More on Riboli Family Wines

Riboli Family Wines, a family-owned company since 1917, celebrates over a century crafting award-winning wines. Wine Enthusiasts’ 2018 American Winery of the Year, Riboli Family Wines includes the Riboli Estate Group division – a portfolio of estate-based brands sourced from the family’s 1,300 acres of sustainably farmed vineyards in Paso Robles, Monterey, and Napa Valley. With a natural affinity for creativity and innovation, the third and fourth generations of the Riboli family continue to lead the industry and push the boundaries of winemaking and the wine drinking experience.  

San Simeon

Rugged, refined and respected, San Simeon wines are driven by terroir – shaped by California’s unique coastal soils and the cooling influence of the Pacific Ocean. The fog and cool air from the sea bring a vital freshness to the wines, which are crafted with 100% estate-grown fruit from the Riboli family’s certified sustainable vineyards in Monterey and Paso Robles. San Simeon’s portfolio of premium wines includes Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Grenache Rosé, Viognier,  Syrah, Petite Sirah, Merlot, as well as a more premium tier that includes a Bordeaux-style blend named Stormwatch, and a Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon from select vineyard blocks


Maddalena Wines is the namesake of Maddalena Riboli, the family matriarch, whose bold vision and pioneering spirit have inspired the family’s innovation for more than eight decades. Like Maddalena herself, these wines make their mark with a full range of white, red, and rosé offerings from Monterey and Paso Robles. Proudly 100% estate-grown and sustainably made from vineyard to bottle, Maddalena Wines is also a stalwart supporter of Dress for Success – West, a worldwide non-profit that empowers women to achieve economic independence.  

Highlands 41

Highlands 41 represents the thrill of adventure and the road less traveled. Historic Highway 41, which connects the Pacific Ocean and Yosemite, carves through an ancient seabed that is now the Riboli family’s Creston Highlands Vineyard – a limestone-rich site 1,300 feet above modern-day sea level. Crafted for freshness and purity with minimal oak, these dry, estate-grown wines are an invitation to adventure, exploring the dramatic natural settings that frame our outlook and shape our vineyards.


Wine Australia Taps Benson

Benson is excited to announce a U.S. media outreach campaign for new client, Wine Australia.

The wine PR campaign includes communications and media pitching around key messaging for Australian wines, including the creativity and diversity of the Australian scene, elevating the awareness of premium Australian wine in the U.S., and promoting Australian Wine CONNECT.

Australian Wine CONNECT is a dynamic, always-on, virtual platform bringing the global wine community together to build new connections with hundreds of Australian wineries for powerful commercial outcomes. CONNECT is free-to-use for all wine trade wishing to extend their knowledge of, and business reach with Australia. The platform offers business-to-business matching services for retailers, importers, and the on-trade across the globe.

More on Wine Australia
Wine Australia supports a competitive wine sector by investing in research, development, and adoption (RD&A), growing domestic and international markets, and protecting the reputation of Australian wine.
Wine Australia is an Australian Commonwealth Government statutory authority, established under the Wine Australia Act 2013, and funded by grape growers and winemakers through levies and user-pays charges and the Australian Government, which provides matching funding for RD&A investments.

Pipe Dream Bourbon among the Redwoods

Redwood Empire Whiskey and Benson “Drink Among Giants”

We are thrilled to add Redwood Empire Whiskey, part of Purple Brands, to our client roster. Redwood Empire Whiskeys age slowly and gently in the cool evenings, foggy mornings, and temperate climate of the region that inspired the brand’s name.  The Redwood Empire defines a string of ancient Redwood groves that stretch from north of San Francisco to the Oregon border along the steep coastal hills marked by thick fog –  the preferred habitat of majestic Coastal Redwoods, some of which are 2,000 years old and 350 feet tall. The Sonoma County, California distillery names each expression for one of these ancient trees: Pipe Dream (bourbon), Emerald Giant (rye), and Lost Monarch (a blend of straight whiskeys). Each bottle includes the GPS coordinates of the tree that inspired that whiskey, and its tagline, Drink Among Giants.

The distillery boasts California’s largest inventory of ageing whiskeys, and all Redwood Empire Whiskey is blended onsite in Sonoma County. A Bottled in Bond expression will be released fall 2021.

Redwood Empire Whiskey’s partnership with the NGO, Trees for the Future, has resulted in 225,000+ trees planted. The distillery donates money to plant one tree for each bottle sold.

Benson’s campaign will include raising awareness of the fast-growing brand in both consumer and trade media, as well as messaging strategy.