The New Ice Age

stormhoek-couture.jpg

As far as wine marketing goes Stormhoek is a wine marketing and blogging success story. And from a product innovation perspective they haven’t disappointed either.

Stormhoek have just announced the imminent release of a concept wine in the UK named Couture – a Rosé made by Stormhoek winemaker Graham Knox, in a style intended to be consumed with ice.

Couture – a blend of Pinotage, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon – launches in June in a major UK retailer at £6.99. It is packaged in a tall, colourful, modern, and chic bottle, its developers say, and its secret recipe and different serving techniques, including draught on tap for the on-trade, they believe give the product an edge in all market sectors.

Knox credits his wife Dianne for the idea: “I’ve watched my wife drink Rosé for years and the one thing she’s always complained about, was that it tasted watered down when she put ice in it, so I made Couture especially for her!”

“The ongoing popularity of Rosé, the success of Magners Cider ‘over ice’ and a survey we conducted in South Africa, gave us the idea to take Graham’s ‘secret’ and develop it,” says Jason Korman, CEO of Stormhoek Vineyards. â€œYou can serve it many different ways, on ice and even as a mixer – we see it as part of a trend where Rosé can be consumed like a cocktail, making it an even more sophisticated drink.” 

Sixty-thousand consumers at Taste London 2007 will witness the launch of Couture, where an Interactive Ice Bar filled with huge blocks of multi-coloured ice, will have a mixologist serving Couture in its four guises: wine glass, tumbler, martini glass and champagne flute. The brand launch will be supported by pre-event video trailers on www.youtube.com and on its website, which launches this week.

The national campaign will see a Couture branded ice-cream van, with film crew and ice bar, travel around the UK visiting supermarkets and wine specialists, sampling its secret blend to thousands of consumers.

In addition, the consumer campaign will be supported by radio, TV and a link up with a top San Francisco global cosmetics company which has “a similar vision, and sense of ‘play’ and entertainment,” according to Catherine Monahan from Orbital Wines, owner of the Stormhoek brand. 

First published on www.wine.co.za

By Mike Carter.