While job growth in U.S. continues to move forward in fits and starts, the overall U.S. economy is still in a modest recovery mode. Depending on which economist or pundit you read or listen to, we are either on the verge of a sustained period of solid growth, in danger of slipping back into recession, or somewhere in between. But given the volatility of the modern world, it could be unwise to accept the analyses of those who apparently speak with unwavering certainty. What is certain, however, is that overall distilled spirits sales volume increased in 2013 for the seventeenth consecutive year, while overall wine sales volume saw positive results in 2013 for the twentieth year in a row.
According to the latest statistics, just released in the Handbook Advance 2014, published by the Beverage Information Group, total U.S. distilled spirits sales volume in 2013 rose to an estimated 210.6 million 9-liter cases, notching a 2.4% gain versus 2012. That represents a sales volume bump of nearly 5 million 9-liter cases over 2012. Importantly, overall spirits retail revenue growth (the combined dollar total of off- and on-premise sales) also increased in 2013, by a healthy 4.2% to $75.82 billion, a gain of more than $3 billion over 2012. The higher percentage gain in spirits revenue (versus spirits sales volume) underlines the ongoing trend of recent years: the dynamic sales activity among premium-priced and above-premium-priced spirits products.
The same holds true in the wine segment. Total U.S. wine sales volume increased by an estimated 2.2% in 2013, to approximately 326.0 million 9-liter cases. This represents a sales volume gain of more than 6.8 million 9-liter cases versus 2012 totals. And similar to spirits, the move toward high-end purchases continued in the wine segment, evidenced by the segment’s 3.6% revenue increase in 2013, to just under $30 billion.
The huge vodka category now comprises 34.1% of all spirits consumed in the U.S. But following years of annual growth rates hovering around 6%, the category gained only 2.5% in 2013, to an estimated 71.8 million 9-liter cases, adding nearly 1.4 million cases to its sales total. One explanation for the declining growth rate is simply the law of large numbers: the category has become so dominant in the spirits landscape that even a large volume increase does not equal a large percentage increase. On the other hand, some observers believe that a bit of consumer fatigue with the wide array of flavored vodkas is finally affecting the market. That may be true for some vodka brands, but for others, flavors remain an essential element in their product mix. Indeed, last year, suppliers continued to introduce new vodka brands, line extensions and flavors to the marketplace. At the same time, the superpremium vodka segment remains an important and vibrant part of the industry.
Rum, the second-largest spirits category, also saw growth in 2013, though up a very modest 0.3% to an estimated 26.83 million 9-liter cases. A variety of popular rum-based cocktails continues to aid category sales (the Mojito, etc). In addition, the category is also benefiting from new spiced and flavored rum product introductions, as well as a growing niche of aficionados drawn to higher-end rum offerings.
Straight American whiskey had a stellar year in 2013, with sales volume rising 5.6% to 17.45 million 9-liter cases. The segment continues to be energized by growth in the superpremium segment, while also benefiting from flavored bourbon debuts. At the same time, the smaller American blends segment decreased by 1.5% to just over 4.86 million 9-liter cases. For its part, overall Scotch whisky built on 2012’s modest gain (up 0.2%) to increase by 2.3%, one of the best showings for the category in recent years, totaling about 8.84 million 9-liter cases. Though several blended Scotch brands performed well, single malt Scotch sales saw an 11.7% across the board increase. Likewise, Canadian Whisky added to its modest sales increase in 2012, with a 1.2% gain 2013, to 15.65 million 9-liter cases. The segment’s recent popularity can be partly traced to an increase in high-quality, high-end offerings, flavored whiskies, and the consumer’s newly discovered interest in rye.
The smallest imported whiskey category, Irish and Other whiskies, jumped another 16.1% in 2013, to almost 2.5 million 9-liter cases, once again driven primarily by the ongoing success of Jameson Irish Whiskey. Tequila also increased last year, with consumption up a healthy 5.2% to 13.62 million 9-liter cases. Still largely driven by the Margarita, the category’s consumption trends also take into account the various levels – from premium to superpremium to ultra-premium – of a brand’s portfolio. The third-largest spirits category, cordials & liqueurs, saw a significant consumption increase of 6.1% in 2013, to 22.33 million 9-liter cases. The fast growth of honey-flavored whiskies most likely played a role in the gains. The brandy & cognac category also saw sales rise in 2013, by 2.4% to 10.75 million cases, with the largest increases, once again, seen among the high-end cognac segment. The gin category continued its slight decline from last year, down 1.2% in 2013; however, its increasingly visible high-end segment posted a 3.9% gain. For its part, Prepared Cocktails saw a decline, off 8.9%.
Table wine comprises almost 92.0% of all wine consumed in the U.S., and it continued growing in 2013, rising 2.3% in 2013 to reach just under 299 million 9-liter cases. Domestic brands continued to outperform imports, gaining 2.5%, while imported table wines were up 1.3% overall. Domestic table wines now represent 70.8% of the overall U.S. wine market. Most industry observers point to the growth of premium- and superpremium-priced wines as an important dynamic in the marketplace, even though the majority of the overall sales volume is composed of wines selling for under $10 per bottle.
Champagne & Sparkling wine posted a 2.7% increase in 2013, to almost 17.2 million 9-liter cases. Most of the growth in the category came from the more affordable domestic and imported sparklers. Even smaller in size is the Dessert & Fortified wine category, which declined another 2.0% in 2013, to 8.14 million cases, while vermouth was off 1.4%.
Brands Maintaining Growth
So, what is the rationale for publishing our Growth Brands lists? To quote what we’ve said here before, “There are beverage alcohol products in every category and at every price point that, for any number of reasons, have either lagged behind or outpaced their respective competitors. Often, a combination of elements – among them solid distribution and retail support, supplier resources, marketing creativity, product heritage and brand equity, the right economic environment, a solid product in the bottle, advantageous price positioning and sometimes just plain luck – help lead to product success.” For example, six years ago, at the height of the Great Recession, a number of high-flying brands suffered, particularly several superpremium-priced brands. At the same time, many value-priced brands thrived; and many other brands of differing price points adjusted to new market realities. Since the economy recovered, most of those superpremium brands have regained momentum; simultaneously, a wide variety of additional brands have continued to make positive strides with consumers and retailers alike. Those are the brands that appear on the following pages. And, as we’ve said in the past, though evaluating category consumption trends can provide the big picture, drilling down to actual brand performance provides the details. Thus, the reason for our annual Growth Brands report, which uses the most up-to-date industry results to highlight the wine and spirits brands with noteworthy growth over the past several years.
Spirits Fast Track Brands
The Fast Track Growth Brands category includes the top-performing brands, percentage-wise, during the past four years. The criteria are demanding: a wine or spirit must have maintained double-digit percentage growth over each of those four years while selling at least 100,000 9-liter cases this past year. Based on the Beverage Information Group’s 2013 statistics, 15 spirits brands made the Fast Track list this year, six fewer than last year’s total of 21. This year there are three new Fast Track spirits members, while three of the brands from last year that fell off the list moved to the Established Growth Brand category.
Overall, there are five vodkas numbered among the 15 Fast Track brands, with three of the top five brands being vodkas. The first, Burnett’s Vodka, leads the Fast Track, having broken through the 2 million case mark in 2012. The brand gained another 15.3% in 2013, notching 2.35 million 9-liter cases. The value-priced vodka counts Pink Lemonade, Limeade, Orange Cream and Maple Syrup among its nearly three dozen flavors.
Tito’s Handmade, the above-premium-priced vodka from Texas, returned to the Fast Track, showing another year of amazing growth, up 41.2%, breaking through the 1 million case barrier to 1.2 million 9-liter cases last year. Tito’s has successfully leveraged its made in America heritage and maintains its single original vodka in a sea of vodkas that have added numerous flavors onto their mother brand. Fast Track repeater, mid-priced Platinum 7X Vodka, distilled seven times, saw sales increase 12.7% last year, to 738,000 cases. Other vodkas include new Fast Track member Exclusiv, which exploded by 94.8% last year, to 565,000 cases. Priced at about $10 for a 750 ml bottle, Exclusiv, imported from Moldova, has successfully challenged the value-priced tier with its original vodka, plus several flavors, as well as a Rose Vodka, which is a blend of rose moscato and vodka. The final vodka listed here is Pearl Vodka, from Canada, which also returned to the Fast Track after another impressive year. The premium-priced brand increased its sales in 2013 by 15.7% to 250,000 cases.
Five different whiskey brands were likewise listed here, all of them Fast Track repeaters. Jameson Irish Whiskey gained 250,000 9-liter cases, to about 1.86 million 9-liter cases. The brand continues to dominate the Irish whiskey category and is still one of the fastest-growing whiskey products with significant sales, percentage-wise, in the U.S. market. The second Fast Track repeater is Junior Johnson’s Midnight Moon Carolina Moonshine, which more than doubled its sales last year, gaining almost 200,000 cases to 320,000 cases. Packaged in “moonshine-like” mason jars, the above-premium-priced Midnight Moon is handcrafted in small batches and includes the original 80 proof moonshine whiskey along with 70 proof flavors of Blueberry, Cherry, Strawberry, Apple Pie, Cherry, Cranberry and Blackberry, which are infused with real fruit. Buchanan’s Scotch Whisky, first established in 1884, reached sales of 307,000 9-liter cases in 2013. The venerable portfolio includes Buchanan’s De Luxe, a 12-year-old blended Scotch made with a core of Dalwhinnie single malt; Buchanan’s Special Reserve, which is aged a minimum of 18 years; and top of the line Buchanan’s 21-year old Red Seal. Two American straight whiskies are repeating as the Fast Track winners. Bulleit Bourbon increased sales by an impressive 52.4%, to 282,000 cases in 2013; the brand is also seeing success with a superpremium-priced rye it added to its lineup in 2012. Woodford Reserve, another superpremium bourbon, gained 18.2% last year, to 214,000 9-liter cases. In 2012, the straight whiskey launched Woodford Reserve Double Oaked Bourbon, and also features a Master’s Collection that releases limited edition bottlings annually.
The three liqueurs in the Fast Track include two whiskey-based products, both of which have been listed here before. Fireball, once again, exploded in the market in 2013, more than doubling its sales to 1.87 million 9-liter cases. The 66-proof cinnamon-flavored whiskey liqueur has carved a niche for itself as a popular shooter, and it has spawned several similar brands from other suppliers in the wake of its enormous success. For its part, Wild Turkey American Honey Liqueur is one of the whiskey-based honey-flavored products seeing success in the market. The 71 proof Wild Turkey Bourbon line extension reached sales of 335,000 9-liter cases in 2013, a 17.1% increase. The third liqueur is Rum Chata, new to the Fast Track, having moved over from the Rising Star category after five years on the market. The above-premium-priced, rum-based liqueur posted sales of 460,000 cases in 2013, a 41.5% gain. The liqueur blends rum with cream, vanilla, sugar and cinnamon, and it comes in a uniquely shaped bottle.
Also new to the Fast Track is Ron Diaz, a rum imported from Barbados. The brand reached sales of 286,000 cases in 2013, a 15.8% increase. The brand features a portfolio that includes a spiced version, several flavored expressions, a regular dark and gold rum and a superpremium Grand Reserva.
Once again, the only gin to attain the Fast Track is Hendrick’s Gin, the superpremium brand with subtle, not forward, juniper characteristics. The brand grew to 209,000 cases in 2013, a 20.4% increase.
Rising Star brands have been on the market four years or less and are represented here for a few reasons: They have demonstrated significant growth over a short time; they have made a notable impression in the market; or they are still relatively small (with a requirement of selling at least 20,000 9-liter cases) but show promise. Last year the list included 28 Rising Stars; this year there are 33, with 18 of them new to the category. Suggested retail prices for these Rising Stars span the range from a lineup of value-priced brands to a number of superpremium-priced products.
Once again topping the Rising Star category is New Amsterdam Vodka, a companion to New Amsterdam Gin. The competitively priced vodka from E&J Gallo increased its sales in 2013 by 75.0%, to nearly 2 million cases in just its third year on the market.
Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey Liqueur, which had a strong 2011 debut, had an impressive 2013, selling 595,000 9-liter cases, a 22.2% gain. Made from a blend of Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey and a proprietary honey liqueur, the above-premium-priced brand is 70 proof and features notes of honey, cinnamon and spice. Indeed, other flavored whiskey and whiskey-branded liqueurs are notable on this list. Evan Williams Flavored Reserve Liqueurs, a line extension of Evan Williams Bourbon, includes the brand’s original Honey Reserve and Cherry Reserve flavors. The 70 proof liqueur reached sales of 165,000 cases in 2013, growing by 16.2%. The Early Times Bourbon brand released the line extension Early Times Fire Eater Hot Cinnamon Liqueur, with sales of 20,000 cases in its first full year on the market. Apparently hoping to emulate the success of Fireball, the 66 proof Fire Eater also hopes to appeal to a shooter constituency. Ditto for SinFire Cinnamon Whiskey, which reached sales of 35,000 9-liter cases last year. The 70 proof brand features a thermostatic label that lets a consumer know when the bottle is chilled to 32 degrees Fahrenheit, apparently the optimum temperature to consume it as a shooter.
Spirits Rising Star Brands
Another fast-growing Rising Star whiskey is Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine, made from grain alcohol, which features 16 flavors along with its original 100 proof White Lightning. Its $27 price tag doesn’t seem to be keeping consumers from buying it, since the brand more than doubled its sales last year to 225,000 9-liter cases. At 80 proof, Bird Dog Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey features its base brand along with four flavored expressions: Blackberry, Maple, Peach and Hot Cinnamon. Priced at about $20, the young whiskey brand reached 62,000 9-liter cases last year. For its part, the spiced Canadian whisky, Revel Stoke, notched sales of 23,000 cases last year.
Non-flavored whiskies include two Jim Beam Brand extensions: Jim Beam Devil’s Cut, which grew to 77,000 cases in 2013, a 42.9% increase. The relatively new expression uses a proprietary process to reclaim the whiskey that has been absorbed into the barrel, resulting in a unique taste. And then there is Jim Beam Jacob’s Ghost, Beam’s new take on white whiskey. Jacob’s Ghost boasts a point of differentiation from other white whiskies in that it is aged for two years, imparting a smoothness to the product. Retailing for about $22, Jacob’s Ghost hit 50,000 9-liter cases in its first full year on the market. The mid-priced Jesse James American Outlaw Bourbon notched 26,000 cases last year. The company says the mid-priced brand is made in the traditional Southern manner, mellowed in charcoal and aged in oak casks. The final whiskey among the Rising Stars is another newcomer, 2 Gingers Irish Whiskey, which Beam purchased at the end of 2012; it is now available nationwide. Made in the Kilbeggan Distillery, 2 Gingers posted sales of 30,000 cases in 2013, while apparently developing a loyal female consumer base.
Several rums are repeating as Rising Stars, including The Kraken Spiced Rum, which had a 20.0% increase to 270,000 cases. The tar-colored black rum sells for above-premium prices and boasts a rich, spicy character. Bacardi Oakheart reached sales of 190,000 cases in 2013. Oakheart debuted in 2011 as Bacardi’s first mainstream spiced rum product, joining a host of other spiced rum brands in the category’s most vibrant niche. That segment also includes the returning Rising Star Blackheart Premium Spiced Rum, a 93-proof brand that is premium-priced. In 2013, the brand sold 65,000 cases. And then there’s Shellback Caribbean Rum, from Barbados. The premium-priced Shellback includes a spiced and a silver expression, and sold 75,000 cases in its second year on the market. New among Rising Star brands is Ron Barcelo, which features a lineup of eight expressions, ranging from mid- to superpremium pricing.
Familia Camarena Tequila is back as a Rising Star, with notable growth of 36.0% in 2013, growing to 571,000 9-liter cases. Both the Silver and Reposado versions are made with 100% blue agave and produced using a small batch, pot still distillation process. The brand sells at very competitive prices. The above-premium priced tequila, Zarco, offers silver and gold expressions. Made from blue agave, it boasts a proprietary production technique. It sold 140,000 cases last year. Another tequila, Old Mexico, offers Oro and Blanco expressions, at value prices. The brand reached sales of 25,000 cases in 2013. Priced above premium is the lineup of Olmeca Altos Tequilas. The 100% agave brand hit 28,000 cases last year.
We don’t know how many bottles of Kinky have been sold because of its name; however, who cares? Billing itself as a vodka liqueur, the 34 proof brand sold 382,000 9-liter cases last year, a 50.4% increase. The brand, which retails for about $23, is a blend of mango, blood orange and passion fruit with five-times distilled vodka. There’s also a Blue version.
A more traditional vodka is a new Rising Star, Deep Eddy, a handcrafted, small-batch vodka produced in Texas. The brand tripled its sales last year to 190,000 cases. Unlike the more famous Texan vodka, Tito’s, Deep Eddy also offers Sweet Tea and Ruby Red flavored expressions. Another new Rising Star is Ivanabitch Vodka, imported from The Netherlands, which gained 20% to sales of 192,000 cases. Selling for about $12 per bottle, the brand has grabbed attention with its tobacco-flavored expressions.
Other vodkas noted here include Wave, which posted 86,000 cases in 2013. The lineup of value-priced flavored vodkas is led by Purple Wave, a grape-flavored vodka. Vesica Vodka is a Polish, triple-distilled potato vodka. The value-priced brand reached 53,000 cases last year. A higher-priced vodka (around $25 retail) making the Rising Stars for the first time is Devotion, which bills itself as “sugar-free” and “gluten-free.” Besides the original, the brand features five flavors, which altogether totaled 30,000 cases in 2013. At a similar price point is American Harvest, a vodka that bills itself right on the front label as an organic spirit. The brand also boasts organic flavoring that comes across as a subtle vanilla sweetness. Made in Iowa, American Harvest reached sales of 35,000 cases last year. At the superpremium level is Double Cross Vodka, imported from the Slovak Republic and distilled seven times. Packaged in a uniquely shaped bottle, the brand reached 21,000 cases last year.
For its part, Twenty Grand is a vodka-infused cognac, retailing for about $29. The brand notched a healthy 50,000 cases its first full year on the market. Another new Rising Star is the pumpkin-flavored liqueur, Fulton’s Harvest. The brand posted 65,000 9-liter cases in its second year on the market.
Finally, two Sauza Tequila branded line extensions are listed here: the prepared cocktail Sauza Sparkling Margarita, which had sales of 65,000 cases in its inaugural year, and Sauza Hornitos Lime Shots, another prepared cocktail, which notched sales of 30,000 cases in its first full year on the market.
Spirits Established Growth Brands
The Spirits Established Growth Brand category represents large-volume brands (sales of more than 400,000 cases) that increased sales over each of the last four years. The brands cited here are mostly mature brands; there are a number of premium and above-premium priced brands here, as well as several value-priced products. Of the 26 Established Growth Brands in 2013 (nine more than in 2012), 16 return to the list from last year, and 10 are new to the category.
A dozen of the brands here are vodkas, beginning with Smirnoff, which topped the list once again, with 2013 sales of nearly 9.93 million cases, a modest 0.8% gain, and maintained its position as the best-selling spirit in the U.S., aided by its lineup of flavored expressions (its two latest are Smirnoff Cinna-Sugar Twist and Wild Honey). Svedka, the Swedish import, priced lower than most other well-known imported vodkas, notched sales of 3.95 million cases in 2013, a 3.3% increase. With several flavors joining the original brand, Svedka maintained its solid growth. Indeed, the brand recently debuted two additional flavors: Svedka Mango Pineapple and Strawberry Lemonade. Pinnacle Vodka has created a niche with offbeat flavor extensions (ie, Whipped Cream, Key Lime Pie, Pumpkin Pie), and it recently added two more: Pinnacle Peppermint Bark and Caramel Apple. The brand hit 2.85 million case sales in 2013, an outstanding 11.8% gain. For its part, Skyy Vodka increased by 1.6% to 2.85 million cases. The above-premium-priced brand continues to promote its portfolio of Infusions natural flavored vodkas, with two recent additions: Vanilla Bean and Georgia Peach.
Ketel One has rejoined the Growth Brand family. One of the many superpremiuum brands that suffered a sales decline during the initial throes of the Great Recession, the brand has regained its positive momentum, posting sales of more than 2.1 million cases in 2013. The superpremium grape-based vodka Ciroc, imported from France, is also new to the category, having moved over from last year’s Fast Track. Besides its original expression, the brand’s portfolio includes Red Berry, Coconut and Peach flavors. It increased sales by 3.0% last year, to more than 1.9 million cases. Also new to Established Growth Brands is the superpremium-priced Belvedere, a rye vodka imported from Poland, which saw sales increase last year to nearly a half million cases.
The remaining five vodkas are all generally below-premium priced, but their growth is nevertheless noteworthy. Barton grew another 1.5%, to sales of more than 2.07 million cases last year; Skol hit sales of 1.93 million cases (up 2.7%); UV Vodka, known for its wide range of flavored versions and moving over to this category from last year’s Fast Track, posted sales of 1.61 million cases; Sobieski, the Polish rye vodka that features a trio of flavors, reached just under 1 million cases last year; and Taaka Vodka, which gained a respectable 10.6% in 2013 to sales of 617,000 cases.
There are four tequilas in the category, with three of them featuring super- and ultra-premium expressions. Patron continued its positive sales momentum in 2013, with a 3.8% gain, to reach sales of more than 2.07 million cases; the brand’s latest expression is Gran Patron Piedra, an extra anejo that used a traditional “stone” production process. Sauza, new to the category, features an extensive portfolio ranging all the way up to ultra-premium; the brand eclipsed the 2 million case mark last year for the first time. The line of 1800 Tequila totaled 960,000 cases, representing a 3.8% increase, while Juarez Tequila, a value brand, ended last year with sales of 820,000 cases.
There are six whiskies noted here, among them Crown Royal, the superpremium Canadian whisky, which jumped another 3.5% in 2013 to 4.38 million cases. Last year, the brand entered the flavored whisky field with its own Crown Royal Maple Finished expression; just recently, it debuted the ultra-premium Crown Royal XO, finished in cognac casks. The venerable Jim Beam Bourbon is one of the major players in the renaissance of American Straight Whiskey. It posted a healthy 10.8% gain last year to just under 3.5 million cases. In addition to its popular base brand, Jim Beam had released several line extensions, most recently Jim Beam Signature Craft 12 Year and Jim Beam Signature Craft Rare Spanish Brandy.
Two other bourbons continued to do well in the marketplace. The first, Evan Williams, climbed to sales of 1.65 million cases, a notable 15.3% increase. The bourbon’s base brand is competitively priced; however, it also features an ultra-premium single barrel expressions. Meanwhile, the superpremium Maker’s Mark Bourbon is another high-end product that has maintained its growth status, gaining another 5.6% in 2013, with sales of about 1.25 million cases.
Johnnie Walker Black is new to the category and its only Scotch. The brand increased a respectable 6.6% last year to 917,000 cases. Meanwhile, the value-priced Canadian whisky Rich & Rare returned to the Established Growth Brand category. The brand reached sales 833,000 cases in 2013.
Two rums are listed here. Admiral Nelson Spiced Rum grew another 2.5%, reaching sales of 820,000 cases, while Sailor Jerry, another spiced rum, notched sales of 733,000 cases. The brand is new to the category, moving over from last year’s Fast Track.
The final two spirits are well-known brands, yet new to the Established Growth category. The high-end Bombay Sapphire, the only gin noted here, increased sales to 939,000 cases, while the superpremium portfolio of Remy Martin Cognacs gained 2.1% to 647,000 cases.
As in previous years, the Wine Fast Track reflects the popularity of approachable, easygoing wines with clear imagery that generally sell for under $10 at retail. As always, there are several Fast Track wines that sell for above $10 and a couple that retail above $15 (including a few that feature lower-priced labels while also offering higher-priced reserve and single vineyard wines in their portfolio, for example). There are even one or two superpremium-and-above wine brands that are included here.
Wine Fast Track Brands
This year, Wine Fast Track brands number 35, compared to 33 from last year. Nine new brands were added this year, including four that were previously noted as Wine Rising Stars.
Once again leading the list is E&J Gallo’s Barefoot Cellars, with its expansive portfolio of varietal and other wines. Usually selling for below $10, the brand added an additional 1.5 million case sales in 2013, pushing its overall sales to 15.87 million cases, a 10.2% gain. E&J Gallo also has three other brands making their first appearance in this category (moving over from Rising Star status). They include Apothic, which features a line of California Syrah, Zinfandel and Merlot retailing for below $10, with 2013 sales of 1.12 million 9-liter cases, a 14.3% gain. Alamos, a brand Gallo imports from Argentina, highlights a Malbec for under $10. Alamos sales jumped 14.4% in 2013 to 915,000 9-liter cases. And La Marca, an Italian Prosecco imported by Gallo, priced about $12-$13, which increased to sales of 278,000 cases, a respectable 26.4% gain. Three additional Gallo brands return to the Fast Track including Canyon Road, a line of red and white varietals, which reached sales of 815,000 cases (up 3.2%). Also returning is William Hill, the Napa Valley winery that specializes in superpremium-priced, complex Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. William Hill also just released its new Coastal Collection of Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon, at $17 suggested retail. The brand rose 15.7% last year to sales of 295,000 cases. In addition, Gallo’s Starborough is listed here. Imported from New Zealand, and primarily featuring its Sauvignon Blanc, it gained 26.9% in 2013 to 165,000 cases.
Constellation is represented by five fast-growing brands here, beginning with Black Box, which features a lineup of bag-in-box offerings. The brand gained a noteworthy 26.5% to 3.41 million cases. The company also boasts the value-priced Rex Goliath line of varietals and a Free Range Blend, which features the giant 47-lb. image of the Rex Goliath rooster on the label. The wine, with grapes sourced from California coastal vineyards, grew by 20.3% to more than