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.
https://www.wineaustralia.com/

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.

Lance Winters, Dave Smith at St. George Spirits distillery

New Client: St. George Spirits

We are proud to start working with St. George Spirits, America’s original craft distillery — a team recognized for “gleefully shunning the spirits world’s conventions” (Esquire).

In 1982, founder Jörg Rupf began making unaged fruit brandy on a single, 65-gallon Holstein pot still in a wood shed he built by hand—modest beginnings that brought Old World distilling methodologies to the New World and “inspired the American artisan distillation movement.” (NPR)

Though Rupf retired in 2010, St. George Spirits continues to be owner-operated, artfully producing a range of imaginative single malt whiskey, absinthe, and several gins, vodkas, brandies, and liqueurs. Rupf’s reverence for extraordinary raw materials and exacting standards continue to inspire master distiller Lance Winters and head distiller and “President of Vices,” Dave Smith (both pictured), and the rest of a talented, dynamic team. The distillery is located in a former WWII aircraft hangar in Alameda, California.

At Benson, our goal will be to simply, clearly convey the passion, intentionality and skill that goes into these extraordinary spirits. For a 4-minute introduction to St. George Spirits narrated by Lance and Dave, watch this video produced for Whole Foods. (Photo credit: Alex Zyuzikov.)

Benson Included in Meininger’s “Power List”

Last month we were proud to be included in “The Top PR Companies for Alcohol Beverage Brands” by Beverage Trade Network for “stellar work that has attracted the right clients…” (We agree!)

This month, we received a similar accolade from Europe’s Meininger’s Wine Business International, making their top 10 “Power List” of U.S. wine and spirits agencies. As author Roger Voss pointed out, “Nowadays, there is no business without good marketing.”

Of course, we would be expected to agree. But we interpret Roger’s quotation as a challenge to continue innovating how we communicate — with clarity, style and integrity – what is truly fascinating about the people and products we represent.

Ok, back to work!

Crushing it at Napa Wine Co.

Some sites just attract history.   ​

​At the intersection of Hwy 29 and Oakville Crossroad lies Napa Wine Co., California Bonded Winery #9. Wine has been produced at this site since the 1880s.

More recently (1993), Napa Wine Co. has been an incubator for many famous winemakers and wines. Benson is proud to launch a trial digital campaign for the company, bringing greater attention to their talented team, production capabilities, and “leave it better than you found it” approach to business.  Napa Wine Co. has supported the wine industry in myriad ways, including a tuition reimbursement program for employees and a new Grower Program helping crush and ferment grapes rejected by buyers for fear of smoke taint. 

Learn more at Napa Wine Co. by following their Facebook and LinkedIn pages.

Benson Named a Top Marketing Agency

Beverage Trade Network’s blog post this month titled “Top PR Companies for Alcohol Beverage Brands,” included Benson along with our peers.

While multi-year client engagements are perhaps the best indicator of client satisfaction – we are proud that our average is 4+ years — it’s also affirming to receive this third party endorsement.

More importantly, their call for wine and spirits brand to increase marketing spending is timely.

The post stated: “The wine and drinks industry has an overabundance of brands in the market and there is an acute need for brands to differentiate themselves with PR and marketing.” It went on to say, “In times of COVID when traveling has become tight, budgets even tighter, and flashy events cannot be held, digital marketing is a great way for your brand to reach a target market. With most human eyes glued to screens small and large, it has become more important than ever to create an active digital marketing strategy. We take a closer look and bring you the most important PR companies in America for your beverage brands.”

The post also said about Benson, “stellar work that has attracted the right clients…”  We agree! Our goal has never been about being the largest, but about being the best.

Barton & Guestier

Benson Adds Barton & Guestier, Veuve du Vernay to Roster

Benson is proud to add two new brands to its client roster to begin the new year: Barton & Guestier, and Veuve du Vernay. The campaign includes consumer and trade press coverage and digital marketing support services.

Barton & Guestier: Reviewed by Thomas Jefferson!

Founded in Bordeaux in 1725 by the Irishman Thomas Barton, Barton & Guestier is the oldest wine house in Bordeaux. The brand  has developed a premium brand strategy based on AOC and varietal wines from Bordeaux, Loire, Burgundy, Beaujolais, Rhône Valley, Languedoc, Provence and Gascony.

With almost three centuries of experience, B&G combines the authenticity of the appellations with the consistency of quality and the typicity of each vintage.

This month, Barton & Guestier releases the newest vintage of their Côtes de Provence rosé wine, Tourmaline, to the U.S. market. Made by Véronique Florentin, newly appointed head of winemaking of Provençal wines for Barton & Guestier, the 2020 Tourmaline is a true-to-type Provence wine showcasing the authenticity of the appellation and its world-renowned style.

Fun fact: Barton & Guestier was the first wine brand imported to the U.S. and was recommended by President Jefferson.

Veuve du Vernay

Veuve du Vernay

Veuve du Vernay: Vive la Vie!

Veuve du Vernay is the leading French sparkling wine brand in the U.S., channeling classic Parisian lifestyle and joie de vivre.

Veuve du Vernay captures both the traditional and the modern. Whether serving the elegant Brut or the flirty Ice Rosé, these wines elevate all occasions.

Fun fact: Veuve du Vernay was founded by Robert Charmat, son of the scientist who patented the Charmat Method of producing sparkling wines. Robert named his wines for a widow in Vernay who helped his father during his early winemaking days. (Veuve in French means widow.)

Today, Veuve du Vernay is produced by Patriarche and made by winemaker Maryline Gianna. Founded in 1780 in Beaune, the heart of Burgundy, Patriarche is a leading wine producer in France with two areas of focus: Burgundy appellation wines and fine sparkling wines.

Chronic Cellars

Chronic Cellars: New Look, Same Attitude

January 26, 2021—Paso Robles, CA—No wallflowers here. Chronic Cellars, the Paso Robles winery known for making seriously good wine for people looking for a dose of adventure, is getting a fresh look for 2021. Inspired by the same disruptive approach to traditional wine culture on which Chronic Cellars was founded, the new package communicates a fresh and imaginative take on what it means to make ‘wines with character.’

Reimagined from the bottle to the capsule, the new look for Chronic Cellars starts with a distinct label on embossed, high quality textured paper that gives the artistic, colorful Chronic Cellars characters their rightful stage below a refined logo. The bottle also gets an attractive upgrade fit for Chronic Cellars’ highly acclaimed wine. An elegant new gray capsule and an updated signature skull icon tops the updated package.

“More than 15 years ago, Chronic Cellars shook up the traditional wine world with bold labels and witty names, while never compromising on wine quality or style,” says Chronic Cellars Winemaker Kip Lorenzetti. “Our new look communicates a continued commitment to that promise we made to our fans all those years ago. Great wine is in our bones.”

The legend of Chronic Cellars dates back to 2004 when founders, Josh and Jake Beckett, combined their winemaking skills with their wit and passion for fun to turn an idea into reality. The brand’s high personality wines garnered both critical acclaim as well as an extremely loyal fan base in the process. In 2020, founding Winemaker Josh Beckett handpicked Winemaker Kip Lorenzetti to carry on the Chronic Cellars mission of creating wines with character that showcase Paso Robles’ unique terroir and infinite possibilities. Today, Kip has completed his first vintage as Chronic Cellars head winemaker working alongside his friend Josh.

“I couldn’t be more thrilled with how the new line up looks,” added Lorenzetti. “It vividly brings to life the outstanding wines we are making and beautifully shares our vision for the uninitiated.”

Chronic Cellars Wines at a Glance: Six Chronic Cellars wines are available nationally at retailers and restaurants across the country and select countries outside the U.S., including the United Kingdom, Canada and Japan.

  • Chronic Cellars Purple Paradise Red Blend: Catch a lucky break with this Zinfandel-dominated blend that bursts with juicy blackberry, dark cherry and enchanting whispers of mocha.
  • Chronic Cellars Sir Real Cabernet Sauvignon: Noble to the core, this Cabernet Sauvignon delivers layers of black fruit, plum, and bright cassis for a balanced mouthfeel.
  • Chronic Cellars Suite Petite Petite Sirah: Impossible to forget, this seductive stunner brings bodacious flavors of bursting blackberries, blueberries, anise and a subtle hint of cacao.
  • Chronic Cellars Sofa King Bueno Red Blend: With wit and confidence for days, this savory blend weaves together a zing of black pepper, luscious black and blue fruits and cool, earthy flavors.
  • NV Spritz & Giggles Sparkling: Spritz your senses with refreshing aromas of citrus blossom and a hint of apple. Then, giggle as crisp effervescence meets notes of ripe peaches and hints of pear.
  • Chronic Cellars Pink Pedals Rosé: Sit back and enjoy the ride with aromas of watermelon and rose petal. Then coast on to flavors of strawberries and a splash of citrus.

Chronic Cellars wines retail from $16.99 to $25.99 and are available at wine retailers nationwide or online at www.chroniccellars.com. Follow Chronic Cellars on Instagram and Facebook.

Press Contact:
Alex Parker
Benson Marketing Group
parker@bensonmarketing.com
707.266.8917

Wines of Languedoc Sud de France

Languedoc Wines End 2020 on High Note

Languedoc Wines US Wine Trade Success with Wine.com Sales and Strengthened Trade Relationships

New York, NY – January 13, 2021 – Languedoc Wines (the CIVL – Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins du Languedoc) has seen admirable success in 2020, even in this most unusually challenging year. Carefully considered partnerships with Wine.com and Napa Valley Wine Academy addressed retail sales and trade education goals for U.S. wine trade and kept the region top of mind with these key gatekeepers and decision makers.

Languedoc Wines and Wine.com Partnership

Languedoc Wines partnered with Wine.com for a special promotion of the region’s wines at the nation’s largest online retailer. This partnership yielded $1.36 million in sales revenue for Languedoc Wines (June – December 2020) and the YOY growth percentage by month outpaced that of Wine.com as a whole. The partnership also spurred expansion of Wine.com’s category search by Region to include South of France. Languedoc and its appellations were also added as search terms, giving deserved recognition to these wines from France’s largest wine region.

Languedoc Wines and US Trade Education

Citing support for top tier wine education as a pillar of the region’s long-term strategy, the CIVL also partnered with Napa Valley Wine Academy to create a range of education opportunities. These included an webinar on the region and its wines, a WSET Diploma level scholarship and a second iteration of the Languedoc Wines National Sommelier Challenge. An updated Regional Guide for Languedoc is also available on SevenFifty Daily.

The winner of the 2020 Languedoc Wines WSET Diploma Scholarship is Irina Ponomarenko, a wine educator living in Los Angeles and the winner of the 2019 Languedoc Wines National Sommelier Challenge. This contest included a written essay on key elements influencing winegrowing in Languedoc, as well as global market positioning given the leadership of the Languedoc region in both organic winegrowing and rosé wine production. At the end of October, the region announced the two winners of the 2020 Languedoc Wines National Sommelier Challenge; Melissa Graeff (Kysela Pere et Fils, LTD) and Miranda Elliot (The Elliot Wine School). Watch an interview with each on NVWA’s Instagram account.

“As the largest wine region in France, and the leader in French organic viticulture, Languedoc, South of France wants to be top of mind with U.S. trade and educators as a dynamic source for incredible diversity and innovative, high-quality winemaking. Through these activities we have strengthened our relationships with members of the U.S. wine trade community and we look forward to continuing to work with them”, says Miren de Lorgeril, wine producer and CIVL President.

About Languedoc Wines

The Languedoc is France’s largest wine region with a history of innovations in winemaking dating back to the Middle Ages. Stretching along the Mediterranean coast, the climatic conditions, topography, and soils offer a multitude of unique terroir for the production of wines of excellent quality. Over 100 grape varieties are grown in Languedoc’s appellations, in a diversity of wine styles, ranging from sparkling to still to dessert wines. The CIVL represents 23 AOCs and 19 IGPs, accounting for 30% of France’s total wine production, 30% of total French rose wines (11% of global rose production), and 36% of France’s organic viticulture.

The Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins du Languedoc (CIVL or “Languedoc Wines”), located in Narbonne in the South of France, manages the worldwide promotion of Languedoc wines. The council was set up in 1994 to represent Languedoc AOCs (Appellations of Controlled Origin) for the entire wine sector, including still, sparkling and sweet wines. This state-approved private organization gathers economic players from the local wine production sector (producers and merchants) and was joined in 2012 by the organization representing the Sud de France PGI (Protected Geographical Indication).

For more information visit: Languedoc-wines.com

FB: @LanguedocWines / IN: @LanguedocWinesUsa / TW: @LanguedocWines

Lauren Liebler

Liebler Joins Benson Marketing Group

Lauren Liebler joined the Benson team in early 2021 to support PR and marketing communications campaigns.

Her prior experience includes agency PR work, specializing in travel and tourism with clients in the Caribbean and Florida. There, she secured valuable coverage and supported teams in winning multiple awards for integrated marketing campaigns. She also brings experience from the Miami headquarters of Southern Wine & Spirits where she worked as an intern in the public relations department.

Lauren graduated with a M.S. in Marketing from American University, and a B.S. in Communication from University of Miami.