The 2016 Wine Growth Brands Awards: Dominant Trends and Best-Selling Bottles

Brand Features

Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi

The Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi brand sold 9.3 million cases of wine last year. This was a 1.3% uptick over 2014 numbers.

How does the nation’s second-leading premium wine brand continue such success? Part of it owes to a 360-degree marketing program, according to Michal Zeituni, marketing manager for Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi.

This summer, for example, the brand rolled out a Woodbridge block party thematic. In-store displays included savings for block-party staples like hot dogs, condiments and chips.


The program also included a block party event with celebrity chef Alex Guarnaschelli. This introduced a wine-infused barbeque sauce collaboration with Daddy Sam’s, which drove 580 million earned media impressions, Zeituni says.

“We also boosted our Woodbridge social presence via a summer block party sweepstakes, driving consumers to our microsite, where they could access all of the summer recipes, photography, and DIY videos that we had created throughout the program,” he adds.


While Millennials are not yet the core consumer of Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi, the brand is naturally exploring new ways to connect with younger wine consumers. This includes launching a more mobile-friendly website this March, as well as seasonal wine—Harvest Spiced Red Blend—unveiled in 2015 as a fresh spin on traditional mulled wine.

Q&A with Lunetta Prosecco

Sparkling wine benefited in 2015 from the prosecco boom. And brands such as Lunetta—which grew 15% last year and won a Fast Track Award—led the way for proseccos. We caught up with the Palm Bay brand team for a quick Q&A.

BD: What is behind the prosecco boom?
Value. Approachability/accessibility. Italian intrigue.

BD: Does Lunetta’s price point intend to capture a certain demographic?
We think Lunetta appeals to a wide demographic. The price is consumer-friendly, and the new package lends a premium look while still feeling approachable.

BD: How does Lunetta position itself more as an every-day wine, not just for celebrations?
Through our use of cocktails. Over this summer, we will be promoting cocktail booklets on the bottles that feature over 10 recipes, as well as savings on mix components.

BD: What’s next for Lunetta?
Next for Lunetta will be the launch of our Sparkling Rosé. This taps into two of the hottest categories in the wine industry.

Q&A with Gran Passione

We caught up with Todd Nelson, marketing and communication manager for Winesellers Ltd., to talk about the company’s Rising Star Award-winning wine, Gran Passione.

BD: What are your activation plans for 2016?
We will hold true to the general principles of the brand by offering premium and unique regional Italian wines at competitive pricing.  We’ve seen growth with other unique varieties such as the Falanghina from Campania, Salice Salentino DOC Riserva made from 100% Negroamaro and the two Piedmont selections—our Gavi DOCG (100% Cortese) and Barbera d’Asti DOCG Superiore. The growth in these SKUs, in addition to the ever-expanding Veneto Rosso Appassimento, will continue the growth trend for 2016.

BD:  What industry trends contribute most to the brand’s growth?
In the current market, most consumers are attracted to fruit-forward wines, with price and authenticity being big factors in deciding what to buy. The Gran Passione range fits into the value-driven niche geared towards Millennials.




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