Posts Tagged ‘biodynamic’

Franklin Wine Club Organic Event

September 10, 2017

Franklin Wine Club

Organic Wine Event

An Education And Tasting 


Saturday September 9th 2017

Exploring Organic Wines

Guest Hosts: Kim Simone And Mark Lenzi

The Organic food and wine movement is hot!

At this event we will explore Organic wines and Organically grown wines.

What is the difference in USDA certified and those made with Organic grapes?

Are there sulfites in Organic wines?

Please come explore and taste.

About Us:

Kim Simone, CSW, FWS, Certified Specialist of Wine (CSW) By The Society Of Wine Educators,

French Wine Scholar And Instructor (FWS) by the French Wine Society

Owner of Vinitas WineWorks

Is THRILLED to be part of the educational team at Franklin Liquors! Kim has been in the wine business since 2002 and holds a Master’s degree in Gastronomy from Boston University, where she is now a teaching assistant. Her passion is helping novice wine drinkers understand why they like the wines they do, clarifying the complexities of wine, and making the topic approachable and fun.


Mark Lenzi CSW, CSS, CWAS, FWS, IWS, co-owner of Franklin Liquors

Trained by the International Sommelier Guild

Certified Specialist of Wine (CSW) and Spirits (CSS) By The Society Of Wine Educators

First in MA to be a California Wine Appellation Specialist (CWAS) by the SF Wine School

French Wine Scholar And Instructor (FWS) by the French Wine Society

First in USA to hold a Quini Certified Educator (QCE) title

Italian Wine Specialist (IWS) by the North American Sommelier Association.

Franklin Liquors is a family-owned business vintage 1978.


The Wines:


Starter Wine 

2016 Pizzolato Prosecco

Organic Grapes


750ml $12.99


Wine #1

2016 Pizzolato Pinot Grigio

Organic Grapes

750ml $11.99


Wine #2

2016 Badger Mountain Chardonnay

USDA Organic

750ml $12.99


Wine #3

2016 Badger Mountain Pinot Noir

USDA Organic

750ml $16.99


Wine #4

2016 Pizzolato Merlot

USDA Organic

750ml $11.99


Wine #5

2016 Badger Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon

USDA Organic

750ml $16.99


Wine #6

2015 Chateau Le Thil

Biodynamic And Organic Grapes

750ml $15.99


Event Photos

Franklin Liquors 2017 Events

Hosted By:

Franklin Liquors

333 East Central St

Franklin, Ma 02038



New Card Back 2016

Screen Shot 2016-07-25 at 2.58.51 PM

Co Host

Kim Simone Vinitas Wineworks


Our Liquor Industry News/Links 03-07-15

March 7, 2015

Liquor Industry News/Links


By: Mark C Lenzi CSW, CSS, CWAS, QCE*


Time Flies!

One Year Anniversary of the Yuengling Brewery entering the Massachusetts market.

During the month of March Our Beer Distributor Atlas will be celebrating.


Spring clock forward tonight.



New Shop Local Campaign


Take Care

Franklin Liquors

Mike & Mark


Liquor Industry Week In Review

This Weeks Highlights:

New Products

Natural Wines

Beer And Girl Scout Cookies




Our Friends Quini Recent Newsletter

Latest Newsletter From Quini


The word “reserve” on a bottle of wine has become one of the shadiest terms one can use when it comes to marketing wine.



We all know that sex sells, but some winemakers are far bolder in their interpretation of the tactic than others.




Madeira: The Historic Portuguese Wine That’s Hip Again

This complex, food-friendly fortified wine—a favorite of the Founding Fathers—is emerging as a top choice for today’s wine drinkers, too

Buying Wine from the Back Label

Using data to decipher winemakers’ language


14 Hands Winery Debuts First Limited Release Kentucky Derby® Red Blend

New Wine Available Nationwide and Offered at Select Events during the 141st ‘Run for the Roses


Shock Top Lemon Shandy This Week!

Anheuser-Busch InBev’s Shock Top has announced the return of its Lemon Shandy summer seasonal. Brewed with California lemon peels, Lemon Shandy will begin rolling out this week, kicking off what the company calls an early “unofficial start of summer.” Concurrently, Shock Top has launched a new campaign, titled “72 Degrees and Shock Top,” featuring a cross-country tour of summer-themed events that will travel from California to Boston. Along with Lemon Shandy, Shock Top’s portfolio includes its year-round Belgian White, Honeycrisp Apple Wheat, Raspberry Wheat and Honey Bourbon Wheat, as well as its Pumpkin Wheat and Shockolate Wheat seasonals.

Harpoon Brewery News

Boston-based Harpoon Brewery is set to take on distribution of San Francisco’s Speakeasy Ales & Lagers this month, according to news reports. The brewer’s Harpoon Distributing Company offshoot will initially launch Speakeasy’s portfolio into the greater Boston area on-premise, with off-premise retail expansion to follow. Established in 1997, Speakeasy Ales & Lagers’ core stable includes its Big Daddy IPA, Prohibition Ale, Metropolis Lager, Scarlett Red Rye and Tallulah Extra Pale Ale, among others. In addition to Boston, Speakeasy has a U.S. footprint spanning roughly 11 states.

State Sues Gallo Over Hazardous Dust Used To Make Wine Bottles

The California Department of Toxic Substances Control has sued Ernest and Julio Gallo’s glass production plant in Modesto.


Nicolas Joly and the Loire’s Wine Culture War

In the Loire Valley—the hotbed of the natural wine movement—a growing number of producers are at odds with the region’s regulatory body

Is A Wine’s Year Really That Important?

Buying wine isn’t easy. Okay, let’s rephrase that, because buying wine by aimlessly pointing at a shelf is actually quite easy to do. Buying wine knowledgeably isn’t easy.

Natural wines: no lab-bred yeast, pig’s pancreas or cryo-extraction

Modern winemaking has become a highly industrialised process – but a growing band of producers are going back to basics. The resulting wine is shocking: vibrant,

earthy and alive

The Weird World of Wine Law

Beverage lawyer Lindsey Zahn looks at the reasoning – or lack of it – behind some of wine’s odder laws.


Redd’s Apple Ale adds two flavors

Green Apple and Wicked Mango join portfolio


Certified Cicerones® Joe Falkowski and Nathan Gunter think about beer and Girl Scout cookie pairings!

Blind-Tasting a Mini-Stave Trial

Participants in Oak Conference prefer a blend of flavor profiles


Enter the newest industry buzzword: “Natural” or “The Natural Wine Movement.”


Top 20 Wine Influencers: Who to follow on Social Media?

Franklin Liquors is 21!

Wine Bottle Anatomy




Drinking wine does make you appear more attractive, but more than one glass will send you spiralling back to mediocrity, according to a recent study.

Attleboro MA liquor store shuttered 24 days in fourth violation for selling to minor in latest police sting

Zip’s Liquor Chest was slammed shut for 24 days straight by the licensing board after a police sting nabbed it for selling to a minor for the third time since 2012 and the fourth time since 2008.


Beam Suntory has unveiled a contemporary new bottle design for its Old Grand-Dad Bonded Bourbon.



If the California premium wine business were a family venture, Sonoma County and Napa Valley would be the momma and the papa of this sprawling brood of regions strung up and down the Pacific Coast – the parents who did the pioneering work that gave the state, and indeed the United States, a seat at the table of global producers of fine wines.


Classic Beer and Food Pairings: Do They Really Work?

Can these oft-repeated pairings keep up with the pace of beer’s evolution?



Wine in 90 Seconds: Languedoc France

Nice video review of the region


Following on from the success of Oregon Pinot Noir in a can, an Idaho winery has launched a Riesling in a can aimed at beer fans on the move.

12-Wine In Can-Franklin-Liquors

Washington Wine 101

A crash course in the basics of Washington wines, by the numbers:

Preferred Alcoholic Beverages of Each Country

13-Drinks_By _Country-Franklin-Liquors


Wegmans renews push to serve alcohol in Mass. Supermarkets

Wegmans, the New-York-based supermarket chain with locations at Northborough Crossing and two other spots in Massachusetts, is renewing a push to change the state’s liquor laws in order to serve alcohol inside its stores.

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Get updated On Liquor Industry News, Events, Sales And More!



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Upcoming Events


Franklin Wine Club Meeting


Wine Explorers wanted!

How To attend and join

March 10th

All About The Box-Bota Box

Franklin Adult Education 2015 Classes

Tuesday March 31st All About Green Wines

Tuesday April 14th Wine Tasting Using Quini

Tuesday May 5th How To Read A Wine Label

Medway Community Education 2015 Winter Classes



Registration Form


Tri-County Adult Education 2015


Franklin, MA

 FLMarkBack 2

Certified Specialist Of Wine-CSW

Certified Specialist Of Spirits-CSS

Society Of Wine Educators

California Wine Appellation Specialist-CWAS-San Francisco Wine School

Quini Certified Educator- QCE

Our Wines Are On Vinobly

In The Mood To Try Something New, Or Want A Little Personalized Help In Navigating Our Aisles? Check Out The New Free Vinobly App Which Makes Personalized Recommendations From Wines In Our Store. You Can Find Wine To Pair With Your Meal, Or Take Their Fun 3-Question Palate Profiler Quiz To Get Started

We Are Proud To Now Partner With Vinobly!

Download The App

Find Them Online


Looking For Wine Maps?

The best wine maps in the business!!


Get your complete wine tasting guide disguised as a notebook.

Over 100,000 copies sold worldwide!


De Long’s Wine Grape Varietal Table


All Our Wines Are Reviewed On Quini

Great wine educational and tasting app.

Every wine we taste and stock is on Quini.

Tell us what you think by rating the wines.


Liquor Industry News/Links 12-06-14

December 6, 2014

Liquor Industry News/Links


By: Mark C Lenzi CSW, CSS, CWAS, QCE*


This Week We Hosted Franklin Adult Education With Big Y Supermarket.

Holiday Desserts And Wine Tasting.


 Coming Next Week 2015 Medway Adult Education Winter Classes

 Our Franklin Wine Club Had First Annual Holiday Party At Davio’s Patriot Place


Take Care

Franklin Liquors

Mike & Mark


Liquor Industry Week In Review

This Weeks Highlights:

New Products

Wine Scented Clothes

Best Beers Of 2014



Lovely bubbly in the Champagne region of France

CHAMPAGNE. The word needs little explanation to any adult and is almost guaranteed to conjure up a memory or two.

Why shiraz/viognier is the perfect red wine for beginners

This unique blend of grapes hales from France in the Northern Rhone region just south of Burgundy



One of the main wines drunk around the holidays is ice wine,


Researchers concluded that resveratrol may be an effective tool in providing treatment for Alzheimer’s


It could be the perfect gift for the whisky-lover who has everything – a fabric that will permanently give off the scent of Johnnie Walker’s Black Label whisky.


Top 3 Beverage Alcohol Trends for 2015

Predictions on what’s hot in the wine and spirits industry in 2015

Sensory-active compounds influencing wine experts’ and consumers’ perception of red wine

For experts, wine quality is linked to high contents of norisoprenoids. For consumers, wine quality is linked to high contents of oak-related volatiles. Ethanol increases finish intensity and duration of coconut and floral flavors in red wine



UK wine merchant Laithwaite’s has launched the world’s first guide to wine and insect matching in response to the growing trend for edible critters.


Alcohol in wine: Keeping the balance

Each winemaker seeks a certain sugar level and flavor combination before deciding to harvest.

Champagne flutes’ tune now out of favor

Maximilian Riedel wants us to leave those flutes and coupes in the cupboard

Biodynamic versus Organic Vineyard Management: Sensory Showdown

There are several differences between organic and biodynamic viticulture, but probably the biggest difference relates to the use of fermented “preparations” in biodynamic vineyard management protocols.


The 25 best beers of 2014

Draft Magazines Top Beers

Bottoms Up Doorbell Dings Wine Glasses

Invented by Peter van der Jagt, this delightful mechanical doorbell strikes two wine glasses to produce sound.


A good time for Cava

Overlooked Spanish wine is an option for the holiday season

A winemaker’s quest to capture Vermont in a bottle

Vermont winemaker Deirdre Heekin calls herself a farmer.


From the roaring 20s to the swinging 60s, Champagne has held a special place in the heart of popular culture for the best part of 100 years, not least on the silver screen.

Oenology in Long Island: Anthony Nappa Wines

Born in Massachusetts, he went to the University of Massachusetts in Amherst to earn a degree in agriculture with a focus on fruit-growing

We Have Wines In Stock!


The Hunt for Pappy van Winkle

There are lines around the block and long waiting lists. Some are even bidding to buy empty bottles. It seems like everyone wants to own Pappy Van Winkle whiskey…but is it worth it?

We get daily calls looking for this!!


The Bar Code: How Wine Labels Lie to Us

Did you know that your wine bottle is lying to you?


Col Solare releases first Red Mountain vintage

Col Solare, the landmark winery on Red Mountain in Washington state, has released the first-ever Red Mountain-designated vintage of its flagship wine – the 2011 Col Solare Red Blend.

Sebastiani launches new wine venture

Wine company Don Sebastiani & Sons, known for novel mass-market brands such as Smoking Loon and Pepperwood Grove, on Tuesday said it plans to launch a new venture that will focus on “craft-winemaking” brands.

How much do people’s taste/palate differ when it comes to wine?

Take a poll and see the results


A wine list composed entirely of wines made by women has been launched at a London restaurant.


‘Tis the season to get hosting, and what better way to entertain your nearest and dearest than with a Christmas cocktail. Here, we’ve assembled the top jolly tipples.


Bud Light Announces Super Bowl Plans

The beer brand is creating the Bud Light House of Whatever for Super Bowl XLIX, also utilizing its hashtag #UpForWhatever from the 2014 ad campaign.

Nook: The Ultimate Innovation For Storing Wine Anywhere

Craig Nottage and Paul Smith from Nook Wine Racks in Adelaide, Australia have created the ultimate innovation for storing wine anywhere.


2014 holiday gifts for the beer lover

All About Beer magazine has created a 2014 holiday gift guide for the beer enthusiast


A San Francisco-based design company has created what it claims to be a “spill proof” wine glass after four years of research.



An at-home, fully-automated cocktail maker that promises to churn out bespoke “craft” cocktails in just five seconds is on track to receive funding via Kickstarter.


Computer Testing Now Available for Society of Wine Educators Certification

Think you’ve got what it takes to be a certified wine educator?

What do You Really Smell in That Glass?

Ambitious newbies, eager to experience the breadth and depth of what the world of wine has to offer, often find themselves frustrated at their inability to pick out some of the tantalizing scents that wine critics offer up in their tasting notes.

Erath releases first wine from Willakia Vineyard

Erath Winery, one of the pioneering wineries of Oregon’s Willamette Valley and the region’s leading producer of Pinot Noir, has released the first wine from their new estate vineyard in the Eola-Amity Hills, Willakia Vineyard.

Is Red Wine Good For You? Two New Studies Say Yes

Two new studies weigh in and suggest that a substance found in red wine, resveratrol, does come with some health benefits, including preventing cancer and cardiovascular diseases.

Sommelier certification

The University of Delaware has become one of only five colleges in the nation to offer the Introduction to Wine certification course to hotel, restaurant and institutional management students.

Sign Up For Our Newsletters


Get updated On Liquor Industry News, Events, Sales And More!


Find Us Online



Like Us On Facebook


Follow Us On Twitter

Our Latest Specials





Upcoming Events


Franklin Wine Club Meeting


Wine Explorers wanted!

How To attend and join

Franklin Adult Education 2015 Classes Coming Soon!


Medway Adult Education 2015 Classes Coming Next Week


Coming Spring 2015

Tri-County Adult Education


Franklin, MA

Certified Specialist Of Wine-CSW

Certified Specialist Of Spirits-CSS

Society Of Wine Educators

California Wine Appellation Specialist-CWAS-San Francisco Wine School

Quini Certified Educator- QCE

 FLMarkBack 2

Our Wines Are On Vinobly

In The Mood To Try Something New, Or Want A Little Personalized Help In Navigating Our Aisles? Check Out The New Free Vinobly App Which Makes Personalized Recommendations From Wines In Our Store. You Can Find Wine To Pair With Your Meal, Or Take Their Fun 3-Question Palate Profiler Quiz To Get Started

We Are Proud To Now Partner With Vinobly!

Download The App

Find Them Online




Looking For Wine Maps?

The best wine maps in the business!!


Get your complete wine tasting guide disguised as a notebook.

Over 100,000 copies sold worldwide!


De Long’s Wine Grape Varietal Table


All Our Wines Are Reviewed On Quini

Great wine educational and tasting app.

Every wine we taste and stock is on Quini.

Tell us what you think by rating the wines.



Our Liquor Industry News/Links 10-18-14

October 18, 2014

Liquor Industry News/Links


By: Mark C Lenzi CSW, CSS, CWAS, QCE*

The Coldest Beer In Town!!

What Liquor Store Does Not Say That??

Well We Now Can Show/Say That With Our New 20 Degree Cooler!



There IS An App For That!

This Week We Started Our Fall Education/Tasting Classes.

Our Wine Room Was Filled With People Wanting To Explore Quini

We Can Recommend Wines To You All Day Long That We Think Are Great.

Bottom Line Is You As A Taster Are The True Test.

Our Quini Class Educates Wine Tasting And Gives You More Power To Learn What You Like.

There Are So Many Wines Today And We Love To Share Tools To Help You!


Take Care

Franklin Liquors

Mike & Mark


Liquor Industry Week In Review

This Weeks Highlights:

New Products

Halloween Craft

10am Sunday Opening



Consumers need to be re-educated about the significance of age statements associated with rum and understand the importance of maturation better, a distiller has stated.

Italian Wines’ U.S. Value Rising In 2014, Despite Volume Decline

Italian wine exports to the U.S. rose 5.5% by value, even as volumes dipped 0.9%, in the first eight months of 2014, according to data from the Italian Food & Wine Institute. The U.S. market’s largest imported wine region, Italy exported a total of 1,683,770 hectoliters (18.7 million cases) to the U.S. from January through August, compared to 1,698,320 hectoliters (18.9 million cases) over the same period last year. Value, meanwhile, jumped from $869.7 million to $917.7 million.

Sparkling wine, in particular, helped drive much of Italy’s progress in the U.S., where Italian offerings account for more than 50% of the market’s total sparkling wine category. The Italian sparkling wine segment grew 17.3% by volume to nearly 2.8 million cases, and 21.3% by value to $120.8 million, during the eight-month period.

New Boston Rum

Boston-based Bully Boy Distillers is launching a bottled rum punch called the Hub Punch, an homage to an original recipe dating back to the late 1800s in Boston. To create Hub Punch, Bully Boy steeps its own Boston Rum with orange and lemon peel and raspberry, and then infuses the liquid with botanicals and herbs. It’s bottled at 35% abv and is best served on the rocks, neat or mixed with soda water, ginger ale or lemonade. The suggested retail price is $29 a 750-ml. and the release date is October 22. Bully Boy will be made in limited-run batches on the company’s 750-gallon copper pot still, with distribution limited to Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

Ste. Michelle’s Bob Bertheau on Riesling, lots and lots of Riesling

Interview with Ste. Michelle winemaker now making over 1 million cases of Riesling every year!

The next big thing in wine? Lesser-known grapes

Unusual grape names are making an impact on supermarket shelves as our taste for adventure stretches to wine.

Not new for what we have in stock!


Crew/Matchbook Wine Co. Expands Production

Growing Matchbook and Sawbuck estate wines, and to increase capacity for its Mossback and Chasing Venus brands,

Henniker Expands Distribution to Vermont and Massachusetts

Henniker Brewing Company is proud to announce the expansion into the neighboring states of Vermont and Massachusetts.


Beyond the Black and Tan: 4 Great Beer Blends to Try

Four fall-friendly blends to help get you started.


Moderate drinking reduces risk of aneurysm

This study has been published by the British publication The Drinks Business.

Game of Thrones – Wine Mix Season 1-4

Ever watched Game of Thrones and thought they drink a lot of wine.

Lodi: A wine region which deserves attention

In the last decade or so, Lodi grape growers have been establishing family-owned, small-production wineries at an increasing rate—in order to utilize their own grapes and produce their own wine.

DIY Halloween Decor: Candy Corn Wine Bottles

Make a big impression with a candy corn painted bottle that makes for a cute decoration after it’s been enjoyed


Football Game Day Wine Pairings Chart has the perfect wines to pair with your meal.



Turning winery waste into biofuels

Researchers at Swinburne University of Technology have developed a technique for converting winery waste into compounds that could have potential value as biofuels or medicines.

Deep-fried tequila shots begin social media craze

Yes, deep-fried tequila shots are a thing.



American singer Melissa Etheridge has announced the launch of a range of products made from cannabis, including a cannabis laced wine, aimed at people suffering from cancer.


We have a more diverse selection of wines available at higher quality levels (and at more reasonable prices) than ever before.


The artificially intelligent robotic bartender named Monsieur, which was unveiled through a Kickstarter campaign at the start of this year, has been given a new lease of life after attracting significant funding from seed investors.


TTAB Finds “Naughty Girl” Not Merely Descriptive of Wine

In a recent opinion, the TTAB found a registered mark for “Naughty Girl” in Class 33 (wines and fortified wines) not merely descriptive of wine.


The Wine Advocate is launching a new international lifestyle magazine, 100 Points by Robert Parker.

An international perspective on bespoke experience, adventure and quality craftsmanship, presented in an elegant, contemporary environment

New Wine Movie

American Wine Movie

A major win for organic New Zealand wine in the EU

New Zealands organic wine industry has scored a major export victory with the announcement that the European Commission (EC) has agreed to recognise New Zealands organic wine production methods as equivalent to its own

How Trader Joe’s Sells Twice As Much As Whole Foods

Trader Joe’s sells twice as much per square foot as Whole Foods.

New High End Johnnie Walker

Diageo has unveiled a new limited edition luxury variant under its Johnnie Walker Scotch whisky brand, John Walker & Sons Private Collection 2014. A blend of 29 casks selected by Johnnie Walker master blender Jim Beveridge, Private Collection 2014 is a 46.8% abv whisky packaged in individually numbered decanters retailing at $850 each. 8,888 bottles of the limited-edition offering are being released. Diageo says forthcoming whiskies under the John Walker & Sons Private Collection will “build into a collectible series year on year.”


Whisky producers the world over have been embracing the flavour phenomenon, but it’s not just honey leading the trend as cinnamon expressions vie to capture consumers’ attention.

Perfectly pair your pumpkin beer

Planning a meal around pumpkin beer is fun, seasonal, and easy!


Kathie Lee Gifford draws fans in Granite State visit to promote wine

Kathie Lee Gifford attracted large crowds in Nashua and Bedford this past weekend as fans were eager to meet the celebrity and taste her newest wine.


Biodynamics, or, What Poop, Crystals, and the Moon Have to Do with It

For those of you curious about what biodynamics is all about, here’s a look back at some comics that explain the ideas behind the farming philosophy.




Personal Wine Releases Zombie Apocalypse Wine Bottle Series

Personal Wine released their Walking Dead Wine Collector’s Series in October


Top 10 unusual places to go wine tasting in the US

Here are ten states deserving your supping scrutiny.


Franklin MA sting: Two restaurant chains caught selling to minors

Two popular restaurants are facing possible liquor license suspensions after police caught them selling alcohol to a minor who had been working undercover with the department

The influence of the multisensory environment on the wine drinking experience

Recent studies have demonstrated that simply by changing the music playing in the background one can effectively change how people rate the taste of a drink or food, and/or how much they enjoy the overall experience.


New Menage A Trois Products

Trinchero Family Estates has added new wines under its Ménage à Trois brand, including a Prosecco and a dark red blend called Midnight. Ménage à Trois Prosecco DOC is made from 100% Glera grapes and retails at $14.99 a 750-ml. Midnight, meanwhile, is a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petite Sirah and Petit Verdot that is positioned at $12.99. The Prosecco and dark red blend launch on the heels of another recent extension to the Ménage à Trois stable—its line of vodkas including Straight, Triple Berry and Triple Citrus, which debuted in June at $24.99 a bottle.

Sierra Nevada Snowpack Variety Hits Shelves

Sierra Nevada (Chico, CA) Snowpack Winter Variety Pack is hitting shelves now.

The 12 pack features two brand new offerings alongside Pale Ale and Porter – Boomerang IPA, and Coffee Stout.


Why Some Wines Taste Better With Age

Why is it that some wines taste better as they get older while others get worse?

Researchers pinpoint mechanism for aroma formation in wine

The majority of wines are produced from around 20 different types of grape, all of which have their own typical aroma. This is due to the terpenes, a diverse category of chemical substances including cholesterol and estrogen

VFW and American Legion May Receive Liquor License Fee Exemption From Selectmen

Two organizations for military veterans could be getting an exemption for their liquor license fees next month in Sharon MA.

Quiz: What type of beer are you?

Take this quiz by USA TODAY Network to find out what type of beer you are.

I was wheat beer!


US and European wine regions step up campaign to protect online wine names

American winemakers were joined by their counterparts from Champagne at a conference on deregulating internet domain names in an effort to boost awareness of how weaker controls would negatively impact the wine business.

Sunday 10am Opening Time Approved By Town Of Franklin

Resolution 14-62: Local Licensing Authority’s Approval of Package Store Licensees’ Notifications of Change in Hours to Permit Earlier Sunday Openings

motion to accept, passed via roll, unanimous (6-0)

October 26th will be first Sunday to open at 10am


Tuscan producer has welcomed the Chianti region’s recently introduced top tier classification, Gran Selezione, as a tool for distinguishing wines with “personality”.


This Chart Will Help You Choose the Perfect Wine to Pair With Your Halloween Candy



State regulators investigating Somerville brewery’s ‘pay-to-play’ allegations

State regulators are investigating charges made by a Somerville brewer, Dann Paquette, who touched off a firestorm among beer enthusiasts when he accused two popular Boston bars of refusing to carry his company’s products because other brewers or distributors had paid to reserve taps there.

9 things on a wine label you should know

If you don’t know a few basic terms on a bottle, your confusion probably will grow


New Shipyard Winter Beer

Portland, Maine’s Shipyard Brewing Company will release new winter seasonal, GingerBreadHead Ale, next month. Available through February, the full-bodied, 4.6%-abv craft offering is brewed with Caramunich and Chocolate malts and features notes of ginger, clove and cinnamon, the company says. It will be distributed in six-packs, 12-packs and on draft. Shipyard produces 20 varieties of craft beer and in 2013 was ranked the 14-largest craft brewery in the U.S. by the Brewers Association.


Amar’e Stoudemire, of the New York Knicks, has taken a novel approach to recovery by bathing in red wine.

That Worm at the Bottom of Your Mezcal Isn’t a Total Lie

The worm is added at the end of the production process

Soju Makers Aim to Turn Fire Water Into Liquid Gold

More of the Korean spirit soju is made than any other liquor in the world.


Stoneham MA secures five new liquor licenses

And so it begins…”the licenses will be a boost to the town”

The Best Beer in the Country Just Got Better

Heady Topper by Vermont brewery The Alchemist is a world-beating IPA. Now if only you could find some.


New Study: Cities With Cheapest And Most Expensive Beer&Wine

A survey released this week by WalletHub found that both beer and wine prices could vary by almost 100% depending on the city.

Time and Oak May Change the Way You Enjoy Your Whiskey

Customize the flavor of your favorite whiskey and improve the quality in 24hrs.


The difference between cheap wine and wine that is made cheaply

How to tell the difference between cheap wine and wine that is made cheaply

Sign Up For Our Newsletters


Get updated On Liquor Industry News, Events, Sales And More!


Find Us Online



Like Us On Facebook


Follow Us On Twitter


Our Latest Specials

Upcoming Events


Franklin Wine Club Meeting


Wine Explorers wanted!

How To attend and join

Franklin Adult Education Fall Classes


Medway Adult Education Classes



Coming Spring 2015

Tri-County Adult Education


Franklin, MA

Certified Specialist Of Wine-CSW

Certified Specialist Of Spirits-CSS

Society Of Wine Educators

California Wine Appellation Specialist-CWAS-San Francisco Wine School

Quini Certified Educator- QCE

 FLMarkBack 2

Our Wines Are On Vinobly

In The Mood To Try Something New, Or Want A Little Personalized Help In Navigating Our Aisles? Check Out The New Free Vinobly App Which Makes Personalized Recommendations From Wines In Our Store. You Can Find Wine To Pair With Your Meal, Or Take Their Fun 3-Question Palate Profiler Quiz To Get Started

We Are Proud To Now Partner With Vinobly!

Download The App

Find Them Online


Looking For Wine Maps?

The best wine maps in the business!!


Get your complete wine tasting guide disguised as a notebook.

Over 100,000 copies sold worldwide!


De Long’s Wine Grape Varietal Table


All Our Wines Are Reviewed On Quini

Great wine educational and tasting app.

Every wine we taste and stock is on Quini.

Tell us what you think by rating the wines.


Liquor Industry News/Links 10-4-14

October 4, 2014

Liquor Industry News/Links


By: Mark C Lenzi CSW, CSS, CWAS, QCE*


Another Great Week For Our Franklin Wine Club. We Had Our First Road Trip To Greenvale Winery. The Weather Was Beautiful For A Tour, Tasting And Picnic Lunch.


Here Is A Nice Blog From Club Member Michele:

October is Non-GMO Month


We Have Added Non-GMO Wines To Our Organic Section.

Find more information about the verification process at


Let Us Help You With The Following Wine Options:






Fair Trade

No Sulfites

Take Care

Franklin Liquors

Mike & Mark


Liquor Industry Week In Review

This Weeks Highlights:

New Products

Tito’s Sued Again!

New Liquor Studies



Fall Whiskey Cocktails

Check out these autumnal whiskey cocktails by NYC master mixologist Josh Brandenburg.


Riesling’s an Oktoberfest-friendly wine

October means Oktoberfest, which for wine lovers means Riesling.

25 breweries you should know

By the latest stats, the number of breweries in the United States has nearly doubled from 1,625 in 2010 to 3,040 today.

5 Great Gluten-Free Beers

There are plenty of beer companies out there that want to provide you with tasty, gluten-free beer


Meet the man who scaled Argentina’s mountains to bring malbec wine to the world

Nicolas Catena has scaled mountains to make seriously good wine.

New wine from Cornell’s latest grape variety

Aromella make a name for itself, by releasing the first wine pressed from the great grape.


Think you drink a lot? This chart will tell you.

To break into the top 10 percent of American drinkers, you would need to drink more than two bottles of wine with every dinner. And you’d still be below-average among those top 10 percenters


Beer may keep your brain sharp

In lab experiments on young mice, scientists found than xanthohumol a type of flavonoid found in beer helped improve cognitive functions in them.

Three Things You Didn’t Know About Chablis

A few fascinating facts about one France’s most celebrated white wine regions.



Men are more likely to “catch” a smile from people in their social group after drinking alcohol, according to a new study.


A Single Tweet By LeBron James, going out to his 15.1 million followers, and the wine in question is made by American football legend, Drew Bledsoe, you can be sure it’s going to get some coverage.


Glenmorangie has released a new single malt, Taghta, which it says is the world’s first crowdsourced whisky. Created over the past 18 months with input from whisky enthusiasts in more than 30 countries, Taghta—which is Scots Gaelic for “The Chosen One”—will be available globally in a supply of 12,000 bottles, retailing at £70 ($114) apiece. The new malt was developed by—and will be sold through— Glenmorangie’s Cask Masters program, led by Dr. Bill Lumsden, the brand’s director of distilling and whisky creation. Through the Cask Masters program, consumers helped decide in which casks the spirit was matured and assisted with packaging design and imagery associated with the finished malt. An Impact “Hot Prospect,” Glenmorangie has more than doubled its U.S. volume to 108,000 cases over the past three years.

New UV Vodka Flavor

UV vodka has launched UV Salty Caramel Apple, the brand’s first limited edition seasonal flavor. Featuring notes of apple, caramel and salt, the fall-inspired offering will be available nationwide, retailing for $11.99 a 750-ml. and $12.99 a 1-liter. Salty Caramel Apple joins UV’s existing range of more than 20 flavored vodkas, including its recently released UV Sugar Crush and UV Sriracha entries. UV vodka is projected to hit 2 million cases this year, according to Phillips Distilling.


The science of skunky beer (and how to prevent it)

Even though it’s cool and breezy out, your beer can still get skunked.



Wine just got even better for you as Australian researchers have developed a technique for converting winery waste into compounds that could have potential value as biofuels or medicines.

Samuel Adams releases 16-ounce cans

Samuel Adams has released its Boston Lager and Rebel IPA in 16-ounce cans.


Beer Today, Gone Tomorrow: Why You Need to Drink Wet-Hopped Beer Right Now

wet-hopped beer, the fleeting embodiment of the season


not all of the smells are straightforward and pleasant.


Antioxidant found in wine may help fight acne

A key antioxidant derived from grapes – and also found in wine – inhibits the growth of acne-causing bacteria, a new study has found.

What can your wine tell you?

you can learn about a white wine by looking at the color.

Make Your Own Yarn-Wrapped Wine Bottle

Get creative and make your own yarn-wrapped wine bottle to decorate for your own home or as a gift!


Leading Producers of Beer, Wine, and Spirits Launch Digital Guiding Principles

The first-ever set of global guidelines for beverage alcohol producers’ online marketing and social media use.

Young drinkers have abandoned big beer. Can it be saved?

Big Beer still has a problem: Drinkers, especially millennials, aren’t consuming enough of it.


Keg theft crackdown in California with signing of new bill


All you would-be keg thieves out there beware, California is coming for you.

New Gansett

Providence, Rhode Island’s Narragansett Beer is returning its collaborative Autocrat Coffee Milk Stout label this month. Created in partnership with Rhode Island coffee producer Autocrat LLC, Autocrat Coffee Milk Stout first appeared in December 2013 as part of Narragansett’s limited edition Hi Neighbor Mash-Up series. The 5.3%-abv entry, which features roasted barley, chocolate malt and crystal malt notes, will be available across select East Coast markets through December, in 16-ounce can six-packs and 12-ounce bottle 12-packs, priced at $8.99-$9.49 a six-pack.



Wine Lover’s Guide to Austria

Austrian wine producers have been crafting superlative wines—sparkling, dry, and sweet—from white and red grapes in small quantities at competitive prices for centuries


10 Things Every Wine Lover Should Know About Gaja

The story of Gaja, one of Italy’s outstanding and most influential wine producers.

Infographic: Beer Versus Wine, Oktoberfest Edition



Pack It Up Folks, There’s Now Spreadable Beer

“Birra Spalmabile” or spreadable beer, is being manufactured and distributed by an Italian company


The family trees of the six companies that make 50% of the world’s beer



Foxboro bars get poor marks

One-third of Foxboro’s liquor establishments get failing grades in sting


Submerged diamonds, rare Cognac, luxurious Champagne and extravagant garnishes are just some of the things which make these cocktails so expensive.


A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit by the descendants of John Wayne over the trademark of a Bourbon brand launched in the late actor’s name.



Sheryl Crow has joined up with Chateau St. Jean winery in California’s Sonoma Valley to raise money for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.


A disabled woman frustrated at the lack of information on access when travelling has  a blog offering disabled people tips and advice on getting around California’s wine country.


The Mead You Need

Often termed “the ancestor of all fermented drinks,” mead is the only fermented beverage that can emerge naturally from our surroundings.

Out-of-the-box Oktoberfest beers

If you’ve sipped too many malty-sweet Oktoberfest beers to count, turn your sights to this mix-six: all fest-worthy, all a different direction from the seasonal lager

Yellow Tail producer to launch premium brand in the US

The new range will retail at up to US$100 per bottle as opposed to Yellow Tail which sells for around $7 per bottle.

Vintage Atlantic Wine Region

Wineries from New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania are part of this regional alliance

Wine and Your Sex Drive

Alcohol in small amounts will increase your libido.


And Then You Read This!!


Drinking as few as five units of alcohol per week could lower men’s sperm count, new research shows.

Tito’s Faces Another Lawsuit

Tito’s Handmade Vodka owner Fifth Generation Inc., which is currently being sued in a California court over its claim that the brand is “Handmade,” is now facing a similar lawsuit in Florida. In recent days, plaintiffs Shalinus Pye and Raisha Licht—both consumers who claim to have previously purchased Tito’s—filed a class action suit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida in Tallahassee.

The Florida lawsuit alleges that “through unlawful, deceptive and unfair trade practices, and false advertising and marketing, defendants manufactured, marketed, and/or sold their ‘handmade’ vodka to consumers with the false representation that the Vodka was ‘handmade’ when, in actuality, the vodka is made via a highly-mechanized process, which is devoid of human hands.”

Similar claims were made in the California lawsuit. Fifth Generation owner Tito Beveridge said he would vigorously contest that suit. “All of our labels have gone through the approval process of the Department of the Treasury’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB),” says Beveridge. “After sending a field agent to Austin to review our processes, the TTB has approved our use of ‘Handmade’ on our label. We think our pot still batch distillation process is one of the key things that differentiates us from a great majority of other vodkas. We disagree with these claims and will defend ourselves against this misguided attack.”

Wine Beats Yogurt in Health Stakes

Probiotic levels in wine beat more traditional dairy sources of good bacteria, a new study in Spain reveal


What makes today’s Lodi wines special?

Great article to read as we prep for Grady Family Winery to visit our tasting room for the Franklin Wine Club!

Pumpkin Cocktails

How to make your own pumpkin purée

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Liquor Industry News/Links 9-27-14

September 27, 2014

Liquor Industry News/Links


By: Mark C Lenzi CSW, CSS, CWAS, QCE* 

Try Before You Buy.

Did You Know We Have An In-Store Wine Dispenser??


You Can Sample Select Wines Daily.

Dispenser Preserves The Wine So You Always Get A Fresh Taste!

Take Care

Franklin Liquors

Mike & Mark


Liquor Industry Week In Review

This Weeks Highlights:

New Products

Tito’s Vodka Sued




Pabst Acquired By Eastern European Brewer Oasis Beverages For Reported $700 Million

Pabst Brewing Company has been sold by private equity owner Metropoulos & Co. to Oasis Beverages, a Cyprus-headquartered brewer with operations focused in Eastern Europe. The purchase price was undisclosed, but sources told the New York Times that the deal was above $700 million. Metropoulos had acquired Pabst—including the Pabst Blue Ribbon, Lone Star, Rainier, Ballantine IPA, Schlitz, Old Style, Stroh’s and Old Milwaukee beer brands—from Kalmanovitz Charitable Foundation for around $250 million in 2010.

Oasis has global volume of 6.1 million hectoliters and claims to have a 12% share of the Moscow beer market. It also operates in Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Belarus. The company was founded in 2008 by Eugene Kashper, who began his career with Stroh’s in 1994. Oasis’s acquisition was backed by TSG Consumer Partners, which will retain a minority stake in Pabst as part of the deal.

“We intend to invest meaningfully in the organization, to continue strong marketing support for PBC’s unique brands, and to drive new product innovations and renovations, such as the recent launch of Ballantine IPA,” Kashper said.

Pabst’s core Blue Ribbon brand has grown by more than one-third in the U.S. market since 2010, rising 7% to 35 million (2.25-gallon) cases last year, according to Impact Databank.

Wine Maker Changes at Groth

Cameron Parry, a veteran Napa Valley winemaker who was recently hired by Groth to succeed Weis 


The Tito’s Lawsuit: When Approval is Not Approval

Tito’s vodka being sued for not being “handmade”

Tito’s Founder Response To Lawsuit

Discover Your New Favorite Wine in Under 60 Seconds with Vinobly

New Wine App recommends wines from stores near you.






A bracelet designed by students that can detect levels of alcohol in someone’s system and “check in” to ensure the wearer is conscious has been praised by Microsoft.


How Important are Federal Excise Taxes to the Wine Industry?

The TTB, the federal agency that has primary jurisdiction over alcohol beverages in the U.S., is to collect federal excise taxes on alcohol beverages


 Minerality Lacks An Objective Meaning

One of the most perplexing words in common wine parlance: minerality.



South African winemakers are adding holograms to their labels as wine fraud moves out of the top end and into the everyday.


Coffee giant Starbucks is developing a non-alcoholic latte that tastes like Guinness.


5 Countries That Produce The Best Wine

Several factors are considered to classify a place as conducive for wine-production.

Cider Cocktails to Mix this Fall

You won’t believe what mixologists are mixing with cider this season. Basil, bacon and ginger are some of the ingredients that will be popping up in fall cocktails.


Low alcohol wines dogged by lack of awareness and poor quality perceptions

France and the USA are the most attractive markets for lower alcohol wines, although others show great potential, says a new report from Wine Intelligence.

Sangria Over Sit-Ups: How Wine Might Help You Replace Your Pesky Gym Membership

Some researchers even referred to red wine as “exercise in a bottle”


Farmers in the desert: the Horse Heaven Hills AVA

Home to some of the most important vineyard land in Washington State

Primitivo: A Gentle Giant

Nice review of Primitivo

Some Coca-Cola with your merlot? 5 Chinese wine myths debunked

Examine some of the myths that have grown up about wine drinking in China.

Good Vibrations in Your Wine Glass

Whether for marketing, to improve vine health or for sheer sensual appreciation, the links between sound and wine are growing.

Update on Direct-to-Consumer Wine Shipping

Massachusetts could quickly become one of the top five states for wine sales and represent $70 million to $100 million in sales within a few years.

California Law and Wine: Ups and Downs

Crazy new law in CA requires sign below in stores


Do you prefer a glass of wine or a pint of bitter? The alcohol you choose is written in your genes, study finds

Genes influence intensity perceptions and whether we like certain drinks

When Cigarettes Cost More, People Drink Less. Except For Wine

Published Wednesday in Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, highlights the tie between the vices.


Who Harvests Your Grapes? You’d Be Surprised

It seems like a simple enough question.


Gadgets for wine lovers



Washington is the second-largest producer of wine in the country,



All about Mead

What’s behind ‘natural wine’?

No consumer would ignore a natural product for an unnatural one, and that distinction is at the heart of a huge wine controversy that, chances are, you haven’t heard about.

Privateer Rum News

Massachusetts-based Privateer Rum has expanded its distillery to 18,000 square feet, tripling its production capacity to about 300 barrels (6,700 cases) of rum annually. The Boston-area distiller, led by founder and president Andrew Cabot—namesake and direct descendant of the 16th-century patriot, privateer and rum-maker—produces two rum offerings: best-seller Silver Reserve, which is 80 proof and retails at $27 a bottle; and True American Amber, which is 90 proof and retails at $34. Privateer’s rums are currently distributed in Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Colorado, California, Rhode Island and Washington, D.C.


The Lynchburg, Tennessee-based distillery has been resting a charcoal-mellowed rye whiskey in new American oak barrels for the past two years, marking the first time since before Prohibition that Jack Daniel’s has experimented with a different mash bill.


Manischewitz: The Great Story of a Not-So-Great Wine

The story of Manischewitz is as intriguing as the wine isn’t


What kind of wine/alcohol should you cook with?

If you don’t enjoy taking a sip of it, you probably won’t enjoy chewing food that has been infused with it

Foxboro MA to decide on liquor licenses at town meeting

It’s only an eight-article town warrant, but it could pack an 80-proof buzz of debate.



Moderate alcohol consumption, as part of a healthy lifestyle, could help prevent four out of five heart attacks in men, according to a recent study.



A new US study has found a link between exercise and how much we drink, suggesting one could well follow the other.

New video series on California wine regions

In honor of California Wine Month 2014, the San Francisco Wine School has produced a series of videos on California wine regions featuring Founder & CEO David Glancy, MS.


More Smirnoff Vodka Flavors

Diageo’s Smirnoff vodka has extended its flavor stable with the addition of its new Smirnoff Sours range. The lineup, which features Green Apple, Watermelon and Fruit Punch expressions, is targeted toward the shot occasion and priced at $15.99 a 750-ml. The Sours launch will be supported by digital advertising, point-of-sale and on-premise initiatives. Smirnoff Sours brings Smirnoff’s flavor range—which also includes the brand’s recently-launched Sorbet Light lineup—to a total of 39 entries. The largest vodka brand in the U.S., Smirnoff was down 0.2% last year to 9.7 million cases, according to Impact Databank.

Rogue Craft Beer News

Oregon’s Rogue Ales & Spirits is launching two new craft ciders this fall. The first, Fruit Salad Cider, is a mix of cherries and plums from Rogue’s Tygh Valley, Oregon farm, blended with Oregon-sourced apples, peaches, marionberries, pears and apricots. The second, 7 Hop Cider, is an apple cider that is dry-hopped with seven varieties of hops from Rogue’s Independence, Oregon farm. Both ciders will debut in 22-ounce bottles and on draft in December. Meanwhile, Rogue has re-launched its Rogue Farms Wet Hop Ale, a returning limited edition entry. Made with fresh Freedom and Yaquina hops sourced from the Independence farm, Wet Hop Ale—available on draft—is produced within a short timeframe, with the hops harvested, transported to the Rogue Brewery and brewed in a little over two hours.

The Big Secret About Pinot

Time to get to the bottom of the story of Pinot, an ancient grape that has boggled us for centuries.

Flavor Profiles of Red Wines



The History of Sulfite Use in Wine

Consumers are constantly complaining about the sulfites in wine

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Liquor Industry News/Links 8-30-14

August 30, 2014

Liquor Industry News/Links


By: Mark C Lenzi CSW, CSS, CWAS, QCE*


Happy Labor Day Weekend!


September Will Be California Wine Month.

The range and diversity of California wine today are unprecedented.

We Pride Ourselves In Finding The Best Value/Tasting Wines From CA For You.


The Earthquake In Napa Left A lot Of Damage To Wineries.

Please Keep Them In Your Thoughts And Glass.


How You Can Help:


Also A Group Started A Wine Bucket Challenge:


Our Labor Day Sale Newsletter


Take Care

Franklin Liquors

Mike & Mark


Liquor Industry Week In Review

This Weeks Highlights:

New Products

Napa Quake

Drink Beer Warm?


A closer look at leaving the stems in wine

This week I have been reading how wine stem use affects taste.

Here is an interesting read on the topic.



Creative Garnishes

As you may have noticed, there have been an increasing amount of creative, extravagant cocktail garnishes popping up on drink menus this year.



Is Wine an Acquired Taste?

If you are brought up drinking wine do you like wine more?


Red Mountain microclimate makes for spectacular wines

Read about this unique area in Washington St


It Takes a Lot of Cow Skulls to Make Good Wine

Items used for biodynamic winemaking




Tips on dental care when drinking wine


Problems with wine by the glass?

Issues with ordering wine by the glass.

Always ask “when was it opened”



A Guide To Joining The Best Wine Clubs

With direct shipping now legal in MA you have choices.

Good read on club options.

“It’s my humble opinion that getting to know your local wine retailer and shopping regularly is the best way to learn about new wines”


The business of Washington wine is bigger than you think

Did you know?

The percentage of Washington wines that Wine Spectator has rated 90 or above is higher than for any other region, including France and California.


Hit me with your best shots: Premixed cocktails hit Boston packies

The cocktail shooters come in four flavors: Vodka Cucumber Lime, Vodka Kamikaze, Vodka Lychee Grapefruit and Tequila Cinnamon Orange. A single-flavor three-pack costs $7.99.

LIQS Cocktail Shots for 25drink


Should Beer Be Served Cold?

A general rule to follow is this: the lighter the flavor of the beer, the cooler it may be served.

Pumpkin beers aplenty already this season

The great pumpkin invasion has begun — already.


Mexico’s Montejo Beer Debuts in United States

Fernando Valenzuela throws out first pitch for Montejo beer at Dodger Stadium



Big Wine and crowdsourcing

New trend for big wineries.

Learn about crowdsourcing and how you can take part



Wine Gelée Makes A Perfect Dessert For All Seasons

Jellied Wine With Summer Fruit



How Julia Child And Cookbooks Taught Us About Wine

Child coaches readers, providing the detail they need to choose a wine, use it in cooking and serve it with meals–CnlHVRtnxoj64EDUboFsqONZPAhSgwBaG7e0V-2O-63GElc8v4mSS_7pvTU3mj3hcNSNA_MEM7OQXOgb0T2dki_x1-XrDjg857QQ6BCM05uz9L7A&_hsmi=13912922


Three Things You Didn’t Know About Oregon Wine Country

Interesting facts about Oregon’s wine country about which even its hard-core wine buffs may not be aware.


Most wineries not insured for quake losses

most are not insured for quake damage



Have You Purchased “Small-Batch” Whiskey?

If so, you may be entitled to take part in a consumer class action to get your money back!


Every State in the USA, Ranked by Beer

Each state ranked by the beers in it




These suggestive, outlandish, tongue-in-cheek and quirky brands included in our list of the top 10 funny spirits names are sure to prompt a chuckle or two.



Ever heard about the drunken bear who massacred the owner of a Russian pub, or the King who went up in flames wrapped in a brandy-soaked linen?





Earthquake Proof Your Wine

Wine Folly Blog with tips and ideas


Here Are The Rules To Buying Alcohol In Each State’s Grocery Stores

Maps for Beer,Wine And Liquor In Each State.

Also Where To Buy On Sundays


Texan brewery unveils 99-pack of beer

Beer fans rejoice: a Texan brewery is selling packs of beer with an eyebrow-raising 99 cans each



Four new books for beer lovers

Ready for some lessons about a favorite beverage? New textbooks will keep you engaged.


A Beginner’s Guide to German Wine

A fifth of all of the wine grapes planted in Germany are Riesling



Why You Should Know Where Your Wine Grows

Interesting read from Wine Folly


Fall’s 5 Craziest Cocktail Trends

Fall season’s most provocative new drinks


New Sam Adams Beer

Boston Beer’s Samuel Adams is debuting Kosmic Mother Funk Grand Cru, a Belgian ale aged in Hungarian oak tuns for more than a year. Through November, the craft offering will be available on draft in select U.S. cities. Kosmic Mother Funk Grand Cru is brewed with wild yeast and bacteria including Brettanomyces and Lactobacillus for a spicy, fruity flavor with hints of oak and vanilla, according to the company. The ale was also blended into the Samuel Adams Barrel Room Collection series of Belgian brews. Kosmic Mother Funk Grand Cru will be available on tap in a “tasting tour” that will hit select locations in Boston, New York, Denver, Cleveland, Dallas, Philadelphia, D.C., Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego, Seattle and another city to be voted on by craft beer lovers across the country.


The ancient origins of beer

The exact origins of beer will forever be a mystery.–and-straws



Chaos erupted in China when deadly cobras used to make wine escaped into a city.


Shock Top adds limited edition banana wheat beer

Shock Top has expanded once again to include a new limited edition beer: Shock Top Spiced Banana Wheat.



Tasting Mastery

Tim Gaiser Blog on Wine tasting


Pop Cap Bottle Openers: An Eye Catching Way to Open Your Beer

Simply place the Pop Cap over the bottle, press down firmly on the cylinder and voila! Off comes the cap!



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Liquor Industry News/Links 8-16-14

August 16, 2014

Liquor Industry News/Links


By: Mark C Lenzi CSW, CSS, CWAS*


Happy Tax Free Weekend!

This Week Our Franklin Adult Education Classes Have Been Announced.

Starting In October We Will Have Three Classes.

Wine Tasting Using Technology

Wine And Pie Tasting


Wine And Holiday Cookie Tasting

To Sign Up And See Coarse Description Click Below


Take Care

Franklin Liquors

Mike & Mark


Liquor Industry Week In Review

This Weeks Highlights:

New Products

Sulfites In Wine

Two Buck Chuck


Midnight Moon Moonshine New Size

Piedmont Distillers has released its Midnight Moon in “half-moon” 375-ml. trial size jars. The new size is available in Apple Pie, Strawberry and Blueberry. The new size jars are distilled from corn, handcrafted in small batches and infused in the jar with fruit. They’re available for a suggested retail price of $11.99 to $13.99. The company has also launched an unflavored 100 proof version of Midnight Moon, which is available for $20 to $22.



In a highly competitive marketplace, spirits brands will do any multitude of things to stand out from the crowd, such as using a face or name from the past to sell their products.


How that nightly glass of wine can wreck your teeth: Dentists warn of the dangers of alcohol for oral health

A glass of wine can suck the calcium from your teeth as well as giving you bad breath


A plea for sulfites in wine

A look at why sulfites are needed in wine

Are Beer Labels Sexist?

breweries are choosing to alienate a whole group of drinkers who would potentially buy their beer



An In-Depth Look at the Proposed Sta Rita Hills AVA Expansion

TTB Notice to Open Comments on the Proposed Expansion of the Sta Rita Hills AVA

Pinot Grigio shortage could see consumers opt for other white wines

Pinot Grigio is in short supply on the bulk market around the globe, which is starting to push up prices.

Advice to an Intern: 10 things Winemakers want you to know

Advice from winemakers to volunteers at harvest time

Research suggests fruit flies could be responsible for wine’s pleasant aromas

Could fruit flies be responsible for the nice smell of most wines?

Having Fun With Wine—The Video Version

China Uncovered: Interview With One Of The Largest Wine Importers In China

What Wine Importers Look for when Sourcing New Brands as Long Term Supply Partners.


You have a bottle of wine / beer / bubbly. You are without anything that one might consider a vaguely useful opening tool. What do you do?


A Canadian team of technologists are seeking funding to launch a pocket-size device capable of detecting whether a drink has been spiked.


Don’t believe everything you read on bourbon bottles

If you follow the bourbon industry closely, you’re familiar with the debate over the concept of contract products.

How The Quini App Helps You Become a More Consistent Wine Taster

Great step by step guide on our new wine education program


Gnarly Head Debuts Authentic Black Wine

Black is a dark, inky Petite Sirah-based blend


Vermentino Is Mediterranean Summer In A Glass

The region of Gallura, in Sardinia’s northeastern corner, is Vermentino’s natural home Read about this Italian white grape.

5 Sauvignon Blancs That Will Change Minds

Sauvignon sales are growing apace, up over 15% year on year in volume terms, and they represent around 25% of our white sales. Five recommendations:–fI0U9BGOkxbXpuStNcao49nL3EQUqvAkkGrQNPHlRShcNsj7o_BL-7MxMuPnjEaf_AnojzkgPunohNOtywluiY6f_bktYzXZXNA4vxKY8gVmZ9Ag&_hsmi=13759798



US archaeologists have discovered what could be the ancestor of Chianti’s famous wine style in the form of 500 waterlogged grape seeds.

The really big ruckus over ‘Two Buck Chuck’

Follow up on a story we posted last week which as been taken down.

Standard wine bottles



Manton Valley AVA

In the shadow of Mt. Lassen in the far northern reach of California.

TTB announced its approval August 1st

Is Wine-Tasting Junk Science?

What makes the connoisseur different from the rest of us is that he or she is simply a better thermometer, a more specific, more reliable device for measuring facts about art or wine or whatever.


How to Video



JRR Tolkien’s fantasy novel The Hobbit is to become the basis for a new range of beers set to be released in the US this month.


What is tannin?

Information on a very common term in wine

Coolest Beer Taps

For decades tap handles have been catching the eye of inexperienced drinkers, lost in a sea of beer as well as seasoned Craft Beer veterans.


The Old Wine Pairing Rules Don’t Work Anymore

you can still pair wine in the traditional way, but as eating habits have changed so should wine pairing.

A Match Made in Heaven — an Introduction to Rioja Wines

Discover the history of Rioja wine and make the perfect match with the heavenly grapes.

Research finds hormone-disrupting chemicals in 59% of wines

New research has found that 59% of tested French wines contain at least one form of phthalate, most likely as a result of plastics used in wineries.


Requirements for pot still and vintage brandies changed



A court has overturned a decision to give Swiss absinthe producers a protected designation of origin, calling the spirit a “generic” product and not explicitly tied to any one geographical location.

Collio wine country: Italy’s undiscovered region

Located about an hour-and-a-half drive from Venice, in the Province of Gorizia

A primer on flaws in wine

How to identify flaws that rear their ugly heads in the winery or the bottle.


What’s Up With Organic Wine?

Details on the differences and some recommendations

Former NFL Quarterbacks New Wine

Dan Marino and Damon Huard New Wine Passing Time.

Interesting Washington Wine


Baiju Buying Tips

An introduction to the world’s most popular drink you’ve never heard of: Baijiu.

What’s Inside a Bottle of Wine



Society Of Wine Educators Goes Mobile With New App!

Free educational wine and spirits quizzes.

Biodynamic wine: Setting the table for seriously sustainable agriculture

Biodynamics explained


Ballantine is coming back

Starting September, Pabst will start selling Ballantine India Pale Ale in six packs and larger bottles in the Northeast.

New app finds the right craft beer to pair with your supper

Brewmasters.Club will help users choose the right food to go with the beer they ordered or the right beer to go with the food they are cooking.

9 Lesser-Known IPAs You Should Be Drinking

Now’s the time to diversify your fridge collection and remember why you fell in love with IPA in the first place. Here are nine excellent beers to get you started.


New Italian Spirit

Italian fine wine importer Vias Imports is debuting a new line of artisanal spirits from Sibona Antica Distilleria in the U.S. market. Located in the Piedmont region of northwestern Italy, family-owned Sibona Antica is working with Vias to bring its line of grappas and liqueurs to the U.S. The initial introduction will include 1-liter offerings of aperitif Amaro Sibona ($29.99, 28%-abv), Chamomile Grappa-Infused Liqueur ($35.99, 32%-abv), Tennessee Wood Aged Grappa Riserva ($69.99, 44%-abv) and Uve di Langa Grappa Brandy ($62.99, 40%-abv). Plans are in place to extend the line in 2015. New York-based Vias Imports has a portfolio with more than 60 products, including Produttori del Barbaresco and Damilano.

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Beverages: Keeping an Eye on CPI


Source: CITI

Apr 16th


Alcoholic Beverage Prices Were Up Again – The CPI for Alcoholic Beverages (Off-Premise) increased 1.1% in March, showing a sequential acceleration compared to the prior month (+0.8%). The CPI for Alcoholic Beverages (On-Premise) increased 2.6% this month, slightly up from the 2.3% increase seen in the previous month. The CPI for Beer (Off-Premise) increased 1.0% this month, in line with the 1.0% increase seen in the prior month. The CPI for Spirits (Off-Premise) was up 1.5% this month, above the 0.3% change seen in February. The CPI for Wine (Off-Premise) increased 0.9% in March, above the 0.7% increase seen in February.




China’s Fake Alcohol


Its black market in fake alcohol is a health risk and costly to legitimate restaurants and bars.


Source: The National Review

By Jillian Kay Melchior

Apr 16th


Two days before Christmas, Chinese authorities led a raid in the capital city. Their findings would be shocking, had it been anywhere but China: 37,000 bottles of counterfeit alcohol, destined for Bar Street in Sanlitun, a popular drinking hub for expats in Beijing.


A gang of counterfeiters had apparently been collecting empty bottles of genuine alcohol, refilling them with a cheap substitute from who knows where, and then reselling them to bars. The police arrested a handful of people, but expats suspected the bar owners had been complicit, too – how else could they afford to offer their famously strong “10 kuai drinks” (U.S. $1.61)?


China is notorious for forgeries and counterfeits. Earlier this year, the China Bee Products Association claimed that half of all honey sold in the mainland is fake. Kunming in Yunnan Province brims with artificial Apple shops, converted overnight to “Smart Stores” throughout the duration of government campaigns to stamp out intellectual-property violations. Before the final Harry Potter book was released in 2007, J. K. Rowling knockoffs, including Harry Potter and the Crystal Vase and Harry Potter and Leopard Walk Up to Dragon, made their way to Chinese bookstores, as CBS reported.


Shops at the Beijing Silk Market hawk everything from fake Adidas to fake Gucci. And near Drum Tower, I once saw a gift shop selling a suitcase full of phony American hundred-dollar bills.


Alcohol is yet another item that’s frequently counterfeited. Joe Passanante, an American doctor based in Beijing, tells me that “from what I’ve seen clinically, [counterfeit alcohol] seems to be a widespread problem,” adding that “being a physician, I think it’s personally happened to me.”


Like melamine-tainted milk and counterfeit pharmaceuticals, China’s fake alcohol can carry significant health risks. Sometimes, it’s merely an inferior alcohol – think two-buck Chuck – being substituted and sold as a pricier one. But counterfeiters also use chemically distinct alcohol that’s dangerous if consumed. It’s generally made from one of three bases: ethylene glycol, which is essentially antifreeze, attacks the kidneys and heart and is potentially fatal; methanol, which attacks the retinal nerve and can result in blindness; and isopropyl alcohol, more commonly known as rubbing alcohol.


Passanante says that from what he’s seen, he suspects most of the counterfeit alcohol in Beijing is isopropyl alcohol – though “we never know. There’s no specific test for it. . . . If it doesn’t kill you the night you drink it, most people will be fine.” The clearest indications are a slightly fruity breath smell and a crippling hangover the next morning, Passanante says.


As little as 250 milliliters – just over a cup – of isopropyl alcohol causes heavy intoxication and can reportedly be fatal, though people have survived after drinking much more. Passing out, imbibers can enter a coma. Those who die after drinking isopropyl alcohol generally drown in their own vomit or saliva. And “there are a lot of what appear to be responsible people ending up in a coma,” Passanante says.


Jeff Gi, an expert mixologist and the owner of Beijing’s Mai Bar, tells me he’s been approached by vendors who offered him fake liquor at hugely discounted prices. Known for his dedication to cocktail perfection – Gi often takes five minutes to fine-tune even the simple Hendricks and tonic – Mai Bar uses only genuine alcohol.


“But a lot of people use fake alcohol because they want to save money, and it’s cheap,” Gi says. “They don’t care about the quality or their customer’s experience . . . and they don’t care if you come back or not.”


Like any black-market product, China’s counterfeit alcohol is hard to quantify. Some big liquor producers collect their own statistics on the prevalence of alcohol counterfeiting, but they keep them secret, fearing their brand might become associated with fakery and therefore altogether avoided in China’s huge and emerging consumer-goods market, says Marjana Martinic, the deputy president of the International Center for Alcohol Policies.


The few estimates that have emerged are disturbing. George Chen, a restaurateur who specializes in wine, told TimeOut Shanghai that his best guess is that up to 80 percent of the city’s alcohol isn’t genuine – either not meant for consumption or an inferior substitute marketed as a higher-priced brand. The chief executive of Brown-Forman, maker of Jack Daniels, has claimed that one-third of the alcohol consumed globally is produced illicitly. And the World Health Organization has found that in Southeast Asia, homebrew or other illegally procured beverages account for 69 percent of overall alcohol consumption.


Even anecdotally, it’s evident that fake alcohol is a big problem in China. Barely a month after the December 23 crackdown, Beijing police busted a bigger ring, arresting 88 suspects and confiscating counterfeit alcohol worth $861,000. The state-run media reported in February that a single public-security officer was responsible for monitoring the alcohol quality in more than 20 Sanlitun bars, and when I was there in March 2013, 10-kuai drinks were still abundantly available.


Nor is alcohol counterfeiting limited to Beijing. Last November, authorities in Zhejiang Province discovered 10,000 bottles of fake Château Lafite Rothschild, valued at around $16 million. China’s nouveau riche crave wine as a status symbol, and sometimes the flamboyant display of wealth is more pleasurable than taste; the BBC has reported that around 70 percent of the Château Lafite bottles sold in China aren’t the real thing.


Two years ago, Chinese police reported that at least $33,800 in fake booze had been sold around Shanghai before 25 people were caught and arrested. In Huaihua, Hunan Province, police found counterfeit alcohol valued at $675,000 in 2011; and in Shoaxing City, Zhejiang Province, police broke up a $305 million operation that had sold counterfeit alcohol in 97 Chinese cities. The China Daily reported that the suspects “had allegedly poured cheap liquors into real containers . . . that they had bought from liquor vendors and rag pickers.” And those are just a few examples.


Counterfeit alcohol is not only dangerous – it’s also harmful to businesses, which are already contending with China’s complicated and often corrupt economic system.


“It’s a nightmare. It’s an absolute nightmare,” says Charlie, a veteran bartender in China who works at The Stumble Inn in Sanlitun, who declined to give his last name. “The fake booze hurts. If you poured it in your car, it would probably work. I’ve siphoned petrol out of a car before, and it was a more pleasant taste. But it’s a roaring trade. It’s a 10-kaui mojito, and people are cheap.”


Charlie tells me that fake alcohol presents “a massive problem, especially when you’re trying to run a good, clean establishment.” There’s the competition factor – a rum and Coke at Stumble Inn costs about 45 yuan, compared to 10 yuan for a drink of questionable origin across the street. Moreover, customers bar-hop in Sanlitun, starting the night out at Stumble Inn and ending up at a less reputable establishment. The next morning, they show up with a brutal hangover, and they want to blame Charlie for selling them fake booze.


Stumble Inn has coped by establishing a reputation for an honest drink. Each bottle of liquor is examined. The latest labeling information from the company is scrutinized, and the liquor is taste- and smell-tested before it’s served. Whenever possible, the bar uses vendors recommended by the liquor companies. When it can’t, it instead consults with other expat bars to find a supplier with a good reputation. Stumble Inn also withholds 40 to 60 percent of suppliers’ payments for at least 30 days, and if even one fake is discovered, “we stop dealing with them immediately, and they will not be paid,” Charlie says. He estimates the bar spends more than $800 a month on quality control for food and drinks.


Vouching for the integrity of alcohol can be difficult for suppliers, too, though. Chinese manufacturers expert in forging have been known to produce not only counterfeit bottles and counterfeit liquor – some also counterfeit the customs stamps and certifications that are supposed to mark the real deal.


Consequently, China’s bartenders have come up with their own tests. One tells me that Jack Daniels “is the benchmark. If they’re using it, I can smell it and I can taste it. It’s the most unique-smelling alcohol there is.” An additional perk? If it’s real, Jack Daniels will leave a white band around the perimeter of a glass when it’s mixed with Coca-Cola. The fake version doesn’t. Bombay and tonic is also a good test, bartenders tell me, because it has a slightly bluish tint when exposed to light. And seasoned drinkers can often taste the difference, too.


Of course, the fact that bartenders and bar owners feel the need to do their own diligence is telling. China’s black market in counterfeit goods challenges not only the health of its people but also its legitimate economy. It’s essentially a short-sighted approach   economics. And like fake alcohol, it can be expected to end in one hell of a hangover.




Cognac shipments down -7% in March, with Asia volatility continuing


Source: Barclays

Apr 16th

Global Cognac shipments fell -7% in March, a turnaround from the +10% reported in February, despite a soft comparable of -1%. Exports fell -6% (+5% in February), impacted by weak reported Asian shipments. There was also a meaningful fall in domestic shipments (5% of industry), down -20%. 12-month rolling industry volumes are now up +2.4% vs. the +2.8% rate in February.

Asian shipments were soft again, down -18% following the -11% drop last month. However, the comparable was particularly tough at +28%. Chinese volumes fell -29%, following the -22% drop in February, but was cycling a +78% comparable given the earlier Chinese New Year (CNY). We note next month’s comparable will remain equally tough at +79% given the stock build last year after the CNY celebrations and ahead of price increases. The rolling 12-month shipment trend into China is now +4%, compared to the prior double-digit run-rate (c.+10%). Singaporean shipments (the largest Asian market) fell -9% vs. a -2% decrease in February, while Hong Kong fell -40%; both are markets where most of the product ends up moving into China. Taking both of these markets into account, we estimate overall exports to China fell -21% in March vs. the 12-month trend which is still up +6% (this was +9% in February).

The US, the largest global export cognac market (c.30% of exports), reported shipments up only +1% (+11% in February) while some of the larger European markets also reported weaker trends; Germany -10%, Norway -36% and Russia -27%. However, the UK reported a solid result with shipments up 15%, a continuation of the strength we have seen year to date.

There continues to be volatility in the monthly cognac data with the March dataset still impacted by the shift in Chinese New Year in our view (difficult China comparable). The focus now is on price increases taken by the industry in March/April. LVMH mentioned on its Q1 sales analyst call (April 16th) that it has taken a 4.5% price increase on VSOP brands and slightly more on XO.

Given the favourable price/mix dynamics of brown spirits and attractive industry TSRs, we remain fundamentally positive on the major spirits companies and reiterate our Overweight ratings on Diageo (PT 2400p) and Pernod (PT EUR110). However, given the current uncertainty around consumer off-take in China and concerns over the future for gifting/banqueting in the region following the recent political transition, we accept Pernod may struggle to make significant headway until greater trading clarity is established. Diageo remains our preferred play for now given its leading position in the growing US market, benefits still to come from the United Spirits acquisition in India and favourable FX tailwinds.



Drinks industry “no role” to play in alcohol policy creation – WHO (Excerpt)


Source: Just-Drinks

By Ben Cooper

16 April 2013


The alcohol industry has “no role” to play in formulating alcohol policies designed to tackle alcohol-related harm, according to the director-general of the World Health Organization.


The claim was made by Dr Margaret Chan in a letter to the British Medical Journal (BMJ) last week. The creation of alcohol policies must be “protected from distortion by commercial or vested interests”, said Dr Chan, who also gave explicit support to the Global Alcohol Policy Alliance (GAPA), a consortium of health NGOs and academics that has voiced its opposition to industry engagement on the issue.




One small glass of wine a week fine during pregnancy, suggests study


Pregnant women who consume low levels of alcohol ‘no more likely to have children with cognitive or behavioural problems’


Source: The Guardian

17 April 2013


Women who drink one small glass of wine a week while pregnant are no more likely to have children with cognitive or behavioural problems as those who do not drink at all during pregnancy, research suggests.


Light drinking during pregnancy “is not linked to adverse behavioural or cognitive outcomes in childhood”, the new study found.


Previous studies have linked heavy drinking during pregnancy to health and development problems in children. But the authors wanted to examine the effects of low-level consumption.


In the new study, published in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, more than 10,000 seven-year-olds took cognitive tests and their parents and teachers interviewed or asked to complete questionnaires.


The findings suggest that children born to light drinkers – those who drank two units or less a week – had lower behavioural difficulty scores than children born to mothers who abstained from drinking during pregnancy. Similarly they were found to have higher cognitive test scores for reading, maths and spatial skills tests.


When the authors adjusted the score for potential confounding factors, most of the results did not prove to be significant. But boys born to mothers who drank small amounts during pregnancy were found to have significantly better reading and spatial skills.


The paper concludes that while children born to light drinkers appeared to have more favourable developmental profiles compared with those born to mothers who did not drink during pregnancy, after statistical adjustment these differences largely disappeared.


“In this large, nationally representative study of seven-year-olds, there appeared to be no increased risk of a negative impact of light drinking in pregnancy on behavioural or cognitive development,” the authors wrote.


“Prior to statistical adjustment, children born to light drinkers appeared to have more favourable developmental profiles than children whose mothers did not drink during their pregnancies, but, after statistical adjustment, the differences largely disappeared.


“Our findings . support the suggestion that low levels of alcohol consumption during pregnancy are not linked to behavioural or cognitive problems during early to mid-childhood.”


Prof Yvonne Kelly, co-author of the study from University College London, said: “There appears to be no increased risk of negative impacts of light drinking in pregnancy on behavioural or cognitive development in seven-year-old children.


“We need to understand more about how children’s environments influence their behavioural and intellectual development. While we have followed these children for the first seven years of their lives, further research is needed to detect whether any adverse effects of low levels of alcohol consumption in pregnancy emerge later in childhood.”


The government’s advice to women who are pregnant or trying to conceive is that they should avoid alcohol altogether.


But if they choose to drink they should not consume more than one or two units once or twice a week.




Top 10 biggest US craft brewers


Source: the drinks business

by Andy Young

15th April, 2013


The Brewers Association, a not-for-profit trade group that collates production statistics for the US brewing industry, has released details of the top craft breweries in the US.


Craft beerThe association describes an American craft brewer as “small, independent and traditional”.


Small means that the brewer has an annual production of six million barrels of beer or less, “flavoured malt beverages are not considered beer for purposes of this definition”.


Independent means that “less than 25% of the craft brewery is owned or controlled by an alcoholic beverage industry member who is not themselves a craft brewer”. And traditional relates to “a brewer who has either an all malt flagship (the beer which represents the greatest volume among that brewers brands) or has at least 50% of its volume in either all malt beers or in beers which use adjuncts to enhance rather than lighten flavour.”


The association claims that there are more than 2,000 breweries in the US and 97% of these are “small and independent”, adding that “on average, most Americans live within 10 miles of a brewery, and hundreds of thousands of people have toured or tasted at their local brewery.”


Craft beer sales are booming in the US and the association said: “Nielsen research confirmed that beer drinkers are shifting to more robust beer styles and we know from Information Resources that seasonal beer is one of the top selling craft beer categories.”


Speaking about these results Paul Gatza, director of the Brewers Association, said: “In 2012, craft surpassed 6% of the total US beer market, with volume and dollar sales reaching record levels. Increasingly, beer lovers are turning to craft brewed beer from small and independent producers to satisfy their thirst for bold, innovative and flavour-forward beers.”


Click through the following pages to find the top 10 US craft brewers, based on 2012 beer sales volume.




NABCA – Register for the 76th Annual Conference


Source: NABCA

Apr 16th


Dates:  May 15-19, 2013

Location:  Phoenix, Arizona


Please remember to register with NABCA by next Monday, April 22, 2013 before the fees increase!  The Arizona Biltmore room block has sold out, please contact the Meetings Department for an alternate list of hotel options.  We recommend making a reservation with one of these hotels as soon as possible.  Visit for registration and rooming details.


For questions, please contact the Meetings Department at or 703-578-4200.  Thank you!




Direct-to-consumer wine sales outperform overall US wine exports: Report


Source: DBR

17 April 2013


The US direct-to-consumer wine sales has increased by 10% to $1.46bn in 2012, which is greater than the overall value of wine exports in the US, according to 2013 Direct Shipping Report by ShipCompliant and Wines & Vines.


The report was prepared by combining the different transactions processed through ShipCompliant Direct compliance platform and Wines & Vines’ comprehensive database of wineries to find out the consumer shipping channel of a winery.


According to the report, the volume of wines shipped directly to consumer increased 7.7% to more than 3.17 million nine-liter cases in 2012, when compared to 2011 figures.


Among different region wineries, Napa County wineries topped the sales list with $713m worth of wine shipped in 2012. However, the value was less than the overall wine shipping channel.


ShipCompliant CEO Jason Eckenroth said the report will guide wineries emphasizing the importance of direct-to-consumer channel.


“The idea is to give wineries not just the systems to help sell to consumers, but also new ideas and insights to apply to wine sales and marketing,” Eckenroth.


US-based ShipCompilant provides wine and spirits suppliers and importers with automated alcohol beverage compliance tools.




Moscato drives US wine sales to new heights


Source: Decanter

by Chris Mercer in California

Tuesday 16 April 2013

Sales of wine in the US hit a new record in 2012, spurred on by drinkers’ growing thirst for Moscato.


Figures released by the California-based Wine Institute show that Moscato sales rose by a third in volume last year in US chain retailers, excluding bars and restaurants.


The grape variety, which has been talked up by hip-hop stars such as Lil’ Kim and Kanye West, now commands a 6% share of wine bought in retail chains, where it is more popular than Sauvignon Blanc and only two percentage share points behind Pinot Grigio.


Moscato’s rise, based largely on the lower-alcohol, lightly sparkling style, helped overall wine sales in the US to rise by 2% in 2012, to 360.1m cases. Sales rose by 5% in value, to US$34.6bn.


‘It is likely that American [wine] consumption will continue to expand over the next decade,’ said wine industry consultant Jon Fredrikson, of Gomberg, Fredrikson & Associates.


He cited strong demographics and better distribution, noting too that Facebook Gifts and Amazon have both moved into online wine sales. Direct wine shipping is now allowed in 39 US states.


‘Consumers have more access to wine with wine-selling locations expanding by well over 50,000 from five years ago,’ added Danny Brager, vice president of beverage alcohol practice at Nielsen.


California accounted for 58% of wine sales by volume and close to 64% of sales by value in the US last year.


Other varietals performing well in chain retailers included Malbec, which saw volume sales rise by a fifth in this channel off a low base. Sweet red wine is also considered a style to watch.




Non-sulphur wines ‘a reality’ with natural preservative


Source: the drinks business

by Rupert Millar

16th April, 2013


Integrapes, a company in Italy, is currently testing an anti-oxidant and anti-bacterial preservative derived from grape pips that it claims is as effective as sulphur.


Furthermore, the wine is supposed to retain more of its natural aromas, particularly the more delicate floral aromas that sulphur can cover.


Derived from the polyphenols found naturally in grape seeds, the resulting solution is added to the must and wine at various points in the winemaking process.


The kits vary only slightly for red, white, rosé and sparkling but essentially involve one litre of the preservative added to every 20 hectolitres of wine at the end of the alcoholic and then malolactic fermentations and then prior to bottling.


The resulting wine is then non-sulphur but supposedly with the potential to age, something many “natural” wines are criticised for not doing.


Commercial director, Donatello Calaprice, told the drinks business that the company had been experimenting and conducting trials for the past seven years and still had wines from that time which are drinkable.


He described the method as a form of “homeopathy”.


Integrapes compares four figures regarding levels of sulphur, anti-oxidants (in vitro using both the Folin-Ciocalteu Index and ORAC Unit) and pigmentation (anthocyanins C3GE) in wines using sulphur and those using Integrapes method.


In nearly all cases, wines (red, white and sparkling) produced with Integrapes’ solution outperform those produced with sulphur.


For example, a 100% Cabernet Sauvignon displayed sulphur levels of 2mg per litre, registered 50.05 on the Folin-Ciocalteu Index, 120.33 C3GE/100ml (anthocyanins equivalent) and 16,665 ORAC Units.


By contrast, the Cabernet Sauvignon produced normally displayed equivalent results of: 41mg/L SO2, 35.55 on the Folin-Ciocalteu Index, 32.22 C3GE/100ml and 11,820 ORAC Units.


The product has been endorsed by one of Italy’s leading wine writers Luca Maroni, who is also collaborating in the on-going tests.


He has stated: “I have tasted hundreds of wines from around the world developed without sulphur dioxide (natural, organic, biodynamic, etc.).


“But so far each of these has turned out to be, irreversibly, off, oxidised or stained by oenological processing defects which compromise the integrity of the fruit.


“Then I tasted the first white wine produced with the Integrapes method and the fruit was blameless, pure and oxidatively still intact.


“The dream of wine without added sulphites in now a reality.”




Parker and Galloni settle dispute


Source: Decanter

by Adam Lechmere

Tuesday 16 April 2013

Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate and its former correspondent Antonio Galloni have settled their dispute out of court.


Antonio Galloni told he could make no comment on the confidential settlement but he said the dispute had been resolved amicably.


On the bulletin board, Robert Parker said, ‘We are pleased to announce that The Wine Advocate and [Galloni’s company] All Grapes Media have resolved all of our outstanding issues amicably, and The Wine Advocate has withdrawn its lawsuit against Mr Galloni and All Grapes Media.’


In March, the Wine Advocate announced it was suing its former California correspondent for breach of contract, fraud and defamation.


Galloni, who was contracted by the influential wine journal for a reported US$300,000 a year to cover California wines, resigned earlier this year after a majority share in the Wine Advocate was bought by a group of Singaporean investors.


The crux of the Wine Advocate’s suit was a report on Sonoma wines that Galloni was due to deliver, explaining to subscribers on his new website that he would not be able to do justice to the diversity of the region in time for the Wine Advocate’s February issue.


Parker said, ‘We expect that Antonio’s Sonoma report will appear in the April issue of The Wine Advocate and that Antonio’s Brunello reviews will be added to our data base sometime in May. We thank our subscribers for their patience during this period.’




20 Individuals From Across the United States Earn Title of Advanced Sommelier


Martin Sheehan-Stross of San Francisco Takes Home the Rudd Scholarship



Apr 15th


Five days of intense examination culminated today with 20 new names being added to the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas list of distinguished Advanced Sommeliers.


Held at Disney’s Grand Californian Resort from April 8-12, 39 candidates sat for the exam, which is the third in a series of four increasingly challenging tests of knowledge and skill offered by the court. At this level, candidates with a superior understanding of wine theory and beverage service, as well as a highly sophisticated tasting ability, are distinguished from the thousands of wine service professionals who attempt the court’s exams on a yearly basis. Of the 20 passers, one rose to the top as the exam’s highest scorer. Martin Sheehan-Stross of San Francisco earned the Rudd Scholarship, offered by the Guild of Sommeliers, which provides funds toward the coursework needed to prepare for the Masters Exam and an invitation to attend the prestigious Rudd Masters Roundtable in Napa Valley, California.


By the time candidates reach the Advanced Examination, most have already invested years of study, in addition to significant time working in and around the beverage industry. From here, they’ll set their sights on the Court’s Master Sommelier Diploma Exam, which just 197 individuals worldwide have ever managed to pass.


“The dedication and talent needed to pass this portion of the exam and succeed in this field is tremendous,” said Shayn Bjornholm, the examination director for the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas. “It is a pleasure to see such impressive qualities in these 20 individuals, and their commitment and enthusiasm is an inspiration to the industry.”


“I am pleased to welcome these exceptional individuals to the next level in wine education,” said Greg Harrington, dhairman of the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas. “They should all be, as we are, extremely proud of their achievements.”


The complete list of candidates who earned the title of Advanced Sommelier at the recent Anaheim, California exam includes:


    Martin Beally (Seattle, WA)

    Caryn Benke (Andina Restaurant, Portland, OR)

    Paul Coker (Stonehill Tavern at St. Regis, Monarch Beach, CA)

    Lauren Collins (L’Espalier, Boston, MA)

   Nicholas Daddona (Boston Harbor Hotel, Boston, MA)

    Michael Dolinski (Restaurant Gordon Ramsay at the London, New York, NY)

    John Filkins (Wit & Wisdom, A Tavern by Michael Mina at Four Seasons, Baltimore, MD)

    Alexander Good (Alloy Dining Ltd., Calgary, Alberta, Canada)

    Sean Isono (Halekulani, Honolulu, HI)

    Carlin Karr (Frasca Food & Wine, Boulder, CO)

    Patrick Miner (Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, Walnut Creek, CA)

    Jeremiah Morehouse (SPQR, San Francisco, CA)

    Steven Murphey (Mid-State Wine and Liq., Houston, TX)

    Carolyn Peete (Charleston, SC)

    Cameron Porter (Los Olivos Wine Merchant and Café, Los Olivos, CA)

    Benjamin Roberts (Masraff’s Restaurant, Houston, TX)

    Martin Sheehan-Stross (San Francisco, CA)

    Jonathan Sloane (Quince, San Francisco, CA)

    Ryan Stetins (Napa, CA)

    Shane Taylor (Blue Water Café, North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada)


About the Court of Master Sommeliers

The Court of Master Sommeliers was established in England in 1977 to encourage improved standards of beverage knowledge and service in hotels and restaurants. The first Master Sommelier Diploma Exam to be held in the United States was in 1987. The title Master Sommelier marks the highest recognition of wine and spirits knowledge, beverage service abilities, and professionalism in the hospitality trade. Education was then, and remains today, the Court’s charter. There are four stages involved in attaining the top qualifications of Master Sommelier: 1) Introductory Sommelier Course; 2) Certified Sommelier Exam; 3) Advanced Sommelier Course; and 4) Master Sommelier Diploma. There are 129 professionals who have earned the title of Master Sommelier as part of the Americas chapter since the organization’s inception. Of those, 111 are men and 18 are women. There are 197 professionals worldwide who have received the title of Master Sommelier since the first Master Sommelier Diploma Exam. For more information, visit




William Grant & Sons appoints new US chief (Excerpt)


Source: Just-Drinks

By James Wilmore

16 April 2013


William Grant & Sons has promoted one of its senior executives to the role of managing director and president of its US division.


The appointment of Jonathan Yusen, currently the company’s senior US marketing VP, was announced by the UK-headquartered group today (16 April). Yusen replaces Simon Hunt, who was recently promoted to the newly-created role of the group’s chief commercial officer, the Glenfiddich distiller said.




Mendocino Wine Company Names Verónica E. Portello as Western Division Manager


Source: Balzac

Apr 16th


Mendocino Wine Company, a family-owned wine company based in Mendocino, California, has named Verónica E. Portello as Western Division Manager, effective April 8, 2013.


With over 19 years of experience in the wine and spirits industry, Portello is a proven performer. Prior to joining Mendocino Wine Company, Portello spent time at Freixenet as their West Division Sales Manager, Vice President of National Accounts at Huneeus Vintners, and at Aveniu Brands as Regional Sales Director.


“Having called on the entire west at some time or another, I am thrilled to take on the division manager position at Mendocino Wine Company,” said Portello. “Brand building is my strength, and I look forward to working closely with the distributor network in promoting, growing and educating the public on the fantastic wines of MWC. Working alongside the Thornhill family and with industry veterans such as Gary Glass and John Girty will be a great honor for me.”


“We are very excited to have Verónica on our team,” stated Chase Thornhill, Senior Brand Manager for Mendocino Wine Company. “With her years of knowledge and experience she’s a perfect fit, and we look forward to growing the brands with her help.”


About Mendocino Wine Company

Formed in 2004, the Mendocino Wine Co. (MWC) owns and operates Parducci Wine Cellars, Mendocino’s oldest winery, as well as Paul Dolan Vineyards, Sketchbook and Wines That Rock, among others. The Thornhill family continues the tradition of making award-winning wines using sustainable wine growing and land use practices.




Tesco profits halve as supermarket group confirms US exit


Tesco, Britain’s biggest retailer, has reported its first fall in profits since the early 1990s after its decision to pull out of the US cost more than £1bn and a slowdown in sales in the UK also hit the company.


Source: Daily Telegraph

By Graham Ruddick

17 Apr 2013


Philip Clarke, chief executive, said the results “are natural consequences of the strategic changes we first began over a year ago and which conclude today”.


Mr Clarke launched a strategic review of Tesco’s US venture Fresh & Easy last year and has now confirmed that the company will exit the business.


Sir Terry Leahy, Mr Clarke’s predecessor, launched Fresh & Easy in 2007 but it is yet to make a profit.


In order to exit Fresh & Easy, Mr Clarke has been forced to book a £1bn writedown on the value of Tesco’s assets in the US. On top of £169m of trading losses in the last year, this means the US venture has wiped £1.2bn from profits.


In the UK, Tesco has also written off £804m after deciding not to build stores on more than 100 sites that it controls.


The company said: “We have reviewed all of the schemes included in the pipeline individually, assessing their viability and potential to deliver an appropriate level of return on capital employed if built out.


“As a result, we have identified more than 100 sites – the majority of which were bought between five and ten years ago, at a higher point in the property cycle – which we no longer plan to develop and have therefore written their values down.”


Last year, Mr Clarke launched a £1bn investment plan to revitalise Tesco in the UK after it was forced to warn that profits would be lower than expected.


This plan included hiring more staff, revamping stores, and relaunching food ranges, such as converting Tesco Value into Everyday Value.


Mr Clarke said Tesco is making “real progress” in the UK.


However, trading profits in the 52 weeks to February 23 fell 8.3pc to £2.3bn.


In total, Tesco reported pre-tax profits of £1.96bn, a 52pc drop on last year. However, this does not include the US writedown, which has been accounted for as a discontinued operation. When this is included, Tesco made just £120m after tax, compared to £2.8bn last year.


The company held its final dividend at 10.13p.


Mr Clarke said: “The announcements made today are natural consequences of the strategic changes we first began over a year ago and which conclude today.


“With profound and rapid change in the way consumers live their lives, our objective is to be the best multichannel retailer for customers.


“Our plan to ‘Build a Better Tesco’ is on track and I am pleased with the real progress in the UK. We have already made substantial improvements to our customers’ shopping experience, which are starting to be reflected in a better performance.


“We have set the business on the right track to deliver realistic, sustainable and attractive returns and long-term growth for shareholders. The consequences are non-cash write-offs relating to the United States, from which we today confirm our decision to exit, and for UK property investments which we will not pursue because of our fundamentally different approach to space.


“We have also faced external challenges which have affected our performance, notably in Europe and Korea.


“Our focus now is on disciplined and targeted investment in those markets with significant growth potential and the opportunity to deliver strong returns.”




Target lowers Q1 sales and profit forecast


Source: RT

By Mike Troy

April 16, 2013


Softer than expected sales trends prompted Target to lower its first quarter earnings outlook Tuesday morning.


The company said it now expects first quarter comps to be flat, after previously forecasting a range of flat to 2% growth. The softer than expected sales prompted the company to revise first quarter adjusted profit expectations to an unspecified level of “slightly below” earlier guidance of $1.10 to $1.20.


The reduced guidance was offered as part of a financial update connected to the company’s recent settlement of a debt tender offer and credit card portfolio sale. According to the company, factors contributing to the reduction included losses related to the early retirement of debt of approximately $445 million, or 41 cents per share and expected earnings per share dilution of 23 cents related to the company’s Canadian segment somewhat offset by accounting gains of approximately 36 cents associated with the sale of Target’s entire consumer credit card receivables portfolio to TD Bank Group.


The sales weakness was characterized as softer than expected, but Target chairman, president and CEO Gregg Steinhafel did offer a heavy dose of pessimism when sharing his first quarter outlook back in February when fourth quarter results were reported.


“As we enter 2013, we will plan appropriately, as the U.S. economy is growing at a painfully slow rate and unemployment remains persistently high,” Steinhafel said during the company’s fourth quarter conference call. “While there are some encouraging signs in the housing market, volatility in consumer confidence, the payroll tax increase, and rise in the price of gas all present incremental headwinds. Given these new challenges facing an already sluggish economy, we have a tempered view of the near-term sales environment.”


Despite the first quarter weakness, Target maintained its full year profit forecast which calls for adjusted earnings per share in the range of $4.85 to $5.05.


Target currently operates 1,784 in the United States and 24 units in Canada.




Minnesota: Minnesota brewers, liquor lobbyists say proposed alcohol tax hike will hit consumers


Source: Associated Press

By Kyle Potter

Apr 16th


Lawmakers’ plan to boost alcohol taxes in Minnesota could add as much as $2 to the cost of a standard 12-pack of beer, local brewers and liquor lobbyists said Tuesday as they tried to rally opposition to the proposed tax spike.


House Democrats argue that a hike in Minnesota’s alcohol excise tax, which was part of the tax package they unveiled Monday, would be a small, 7-cent-per-drink increase to help the state raise revenue and pay for the social costs of alcoholism. But executives at two of Minnesota’s largest homegrown breweries said the proposal would quadruple their annual tax bills and eventually hit beer drinkers’ wallets.


“Ultimately, we throw our customers under the bus and expect them to pay for this,” said Mark Stutrud, founder and CEO of St. Paul’s Summit Brewing. “I’m terribly uncomfortable.”


Minnesota charges brewers and wholesalers that sell their products in the state a different excise tax rate based on the type of alcohol. Currently, brewers including Summit pay the state $4.60 for every 31-gallon barrel they brew. Liquors and other spirits are currently charged $1.33 for each liter bottle. For bottles of wine, it varies based on alcoholic content.


Those rates haven’t changed since 1987. The House tax bill looks to bump up all of those taxes, by as much as $27.75 for each barrel of beer.


Summit expects to brew about 120,000 barrels of beer this year, Stutrud said. Even after a $1.4 million tax credit, the proposed increase would

increase Summit’s tax bill to the state from about $550,000 last year to about $1.9 million. Ted Marti, president of August Schell Brewing Co., said he expects a similar figure for his brewery in New Ulm, Minn.


Stutrud and other opponents of that increase said it would compound as a barrel travels to the consumer: Brewers will hike their prices to distributors to cover the cost of the tax increase, then distributors will do the same before selling to retailers. Eventually, the trickledown results in higher prices on bar menus and liquor store shelves.


“It’s not 7 cents a drink anymore. It’s terrible spin. It’s a lie,” Stutrud said.


House Tax Committee Chairwoman Ann Lenczewski, DFL-Bloomington, said she doesn’t buy that argument.


Lenczewski said the projected revenue from the excise tax increase would do little to tackle an estimated $3 billion in costs for alcohol abuse.


“We’re trying to get the high users of alcohol to help the state recoup some of its costs,” she said.


Lenczewski said the bill deliberately provides extra help to Minnesota brewers small and large. It includes a tax credit that wipes out the excise tax for up to 50,000 barrels a year, so microbreweries would be off the hook. Brewers and wholesalers who sell more than 200,000 barrels a year aren’t eligible.


“They don’t feel that way because it’s a tax increase, but they’re getting special, preferential tax treatment,” she said.


Stutrud said Summit is on track to pass that 200,000-barrel threshold in the next five to six years, and August Schell may do the same. That means both companies could lose that tax credit.


Even at that point, Marti said: “You’re by no means a large brewer.”




Mississippi: Governor vetoes bill allowing transport of liquor through dry counties


Source: Associated Press

April 16,2013


Gov. Phil Bryant has vetoed a bill that would have allowed Mississippians to transport a limited amount of unopened alcohol through dry counties.


Senate Bill 2526 was passed during the waning days of the 2013 session. The bill would let a person buy the liquor in a wet county and drive through dry counties to another wet county. The bill also set limits on how much unopened liquor could be transported.


In his veto message, Bryant said the bill would undermine illegal liquor enforcement in Mississippi.


He said state law barring possession of alcohol in a dry county is straightforward.


“However, if the law is amended to permit the carrying of alcohol through such jurisdictions, then officers will be required to question every person they encounter who is in possession of alcohol to determine whether the person is merely passing through on his or her way to a wet jurisdiction.


“Further, such a person could create an issue of fact, and probably require a full-blown trial, simply by claiming that he or she was on his way to a wet county. Consequently, the prohibitions applicable in dry counties would be much more difficult to enforce,” Bryant said.


Mississippi in 1966 became the last state in the nation to legalize liquor sales, but only in counties that agreed to exempt themselves from the state’s prohibition. Mississippi has a patchwork of “wet” and “dry” counties.

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