Quintessential, a family owned-and-operated import, marketing and sales company headquartered in Napa, CA, will represent Accolade Wines in the U.S. Accolade Wines is one of Australia’s largest wine companies, with 51 brands sold in over 140 countries — brands with histories that date back as far as the 1800s.
Accolade started with Hardys. This was one of the first wineries in Australia, established in 1853 by founder Thomas Hardy. Hardys has grown into one of Australia’s largest wine producers, and today is the top imported wine brand in Great Britain, the company says.
Grant Burge and St. Hallett are two other Australian brands in the Accolade portfolio, with long histories in the Barossa wine region. Five generations of the Burge family made wine in the heart of South Australia’s famous region. Burge is best known for making the The Holy Trinity, one of the first GSM blends (grenache, shiraz, mourvèdre).
Grant Burge’s newest labels is named Barossa Ink. These are two wines, a shiraz and a cabernet sauvignon, with a color so dark, it is almost ink, the company says.
St. Hallett was founded in 1944. All of the fruit used in every bottle is grown, made and matured in the Barossa, with some of the fruit coming from some of the oldest vineyards in the world, the company says. Three St. Hallett Shiraz — Core Faith, Core Black Clay and Reserve Blackwell — as well as the Core Gamekeeper Shiraz-Grenache and Reserve Old Vines Grenache — are among the first St. Hallett wines Quintessential will import.
Mud House and Hay Maker become the first two New Zealand wines Quintessential will represent since its founding. Over 20 years ago, the Mud House founders fell in love with Marlborough, near the top of New Zealand’s South Island. From these vineyards comes their sauvignon blanc.
In addition to Mud House’s Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, and Hay Maker (an under-$12 sauvignon blanc from the Mud House winery), Quintessential also represents the Mud House Central Otago Pinot Noir.
Going halfway around the world, an Italian prosecco and sparkling rosé from Treviso and the Veneto (where Glera grapes are grown) from Da Luca will also join the Quintessential Portfolio.
Stone’s Ginger Wine, from Great Britain, is the first wine Quintessential is handling from the British Isles. It is made with sugar beet neutral spirits and natural ginger flavor, and stored in wood casks for a short period of time. It is usually served as an aperitif or as a “spicy” mixer for a wide array of cocktails.
Finally, Quintessential will market three of the Echo Falls Fruit Fusion wines – Strawberry, Raspberry & Blackberry Rose Wine; Peach & Mango White Wine, and Raspberry & Blackcurrant Red Wine. Each is blended with natural fruit flavors.
“The Americas hold huge opportunity as a key growth market for Accolade Wines,” says Robert Foye, CEO of Accolade. “Through our partnership with Quintessential, we are excited to bring our amazing, award-winning portfolio of Australian and New Zealand wines – along with our Italian Prosecco, Da Luca – to the U.S. to enrich everyday moments in our consumers’ lives.”
According to Dennis Kreps, who owns Quintessential with his father, Stephen D. Kreps, “we’re always looking for wines that will ‘stand out’ in terms of quality and great value. Although we began conversations with Accolade more than a year ago, the current market circumstances we find ourselves in make it more imperative than ever that we carefully chose brands we believe we can successfully market and sell. Wines with history and heritage that fit with the rest of our portfolio.”