NYC Beverage Market Quickfire – September 2019
We are in the last quarter of 2019 and the NYC Beverage landscape is wacky as F#$(&.
Below are some broad trends that are shaping the market today.
Mayday Mayday Rosé
Was this a good Rosé season? Maybe for some, but saturation is pushing the rosé category into the danger zone. For a while, selling Rosé seemed like a sure thing. Not anymore. If we want to Maké Rosé Great Again, the buyers are going to have to adjust – and the importer/distributor is going to have to be smarter.
I will tell you this – my earlier Rosé article holds true; if you DI’d Rosé and let the rest of the season go you are probably laughing at those that have thousands of cases left.
Portuguese wine has been building over the last year, but more and more real wine coming from Portugal is flowing through the market. Luis Seabra broke through on the top end and premier NYC retailers are putting Portugal on offers and selling them out like crazy. Quality, story, price, well-launched. I see this continuing to grow. Look for Importers to start looking for more…
Natty Wine Story – The Tribe and OG’s
Natural Wine is not built on the wine, but the Tribe. Sick of hearing about Natural Wine? So what. What about all the people that are just hearing about it? That’s the build and trajectory. The definition of Natural wine isn’t what everyone says it is or isn’t. IT ISN’T THE WINE. It is the people that make and drink it that define the movement. This is BeBop – it ain’t for everyone, and that is part of the strength.
There are going to be more tussles about who the cool kids are in the natural wine cafeteria and who the uncool folks are; the Natural Wine version of what do you bench…And heads up, the OG Natural Wine ambassadors are not too keen on stepping to the side so the young and new can jump in. Look for some Fratty Natty hazing.
I take over your bar, you take my wines…
There have been and will continue to be many wine takeovers, so many your head will spin.
And they will always be the best deal on wine and food and work out well for everyone involved. Kidding…
Since the one-percenters burgundies are getting even more expensive as demand grows and the wines are traded like baseball cards at auction, alternative Burgundy is having a moment. Any ghetto category that used to be laughed at like Rully or Givry now has a chance at some play.
“ Is the Orange Man in the white house driving the NYC crowd to drink? UMMM...HELL YES.
Educate the People
A few wily marketers in the restaurant biz have attempted to stake a claim on educating the consumer at low cost and with a very high impact/return.
Education isn’t just for the retailer anymore – and this will continue to expand. Another interesting attention-grabbing move. Bravo.
The Trump Bump
Is the Orange man driving the NYC crowd to drink? UMMM…HELL YES. The press got more subscribers and we got the uptick in consumption. This will most likely keep going until he is out.
Wait, we can’t taste that?
Act now or this wine will be gone! Email me for an allocation, this is so rare and hard to get.
Alice Feiring put up a post on instagram about the email blast and the comments are hilarious and at times insightful.
The truth is that smaller importers are starting to get used to offering a few cases here and a few cases there – acting like there is so much demand for the wines they represent that the wines sell out immediately. This model only resonates with me unless they are being honest. So I ask you…are they being honest? Are they using the word allocation as a manipulation?
My take is this: sometimes the wine does actually sell out before release. And if you have an addiction to these wines and want to support them, you should respond. Ask if you can pop a bottle to check out the new vintage.
BUT, anyone who engages with a dishonest messenger or HAS to have that wine (as if there are no other options), or chooses to work with importers who can only buy small amounts for the whole US and fake allocate has decided their own fate.