Treasury Wines Estates, owners of some of nation’s most famous wine brands, including Penfolds, Lindemans and Wolf Blass is evoking the name of one of the industry’s more colourful people in the 20th century in a bid to attract millennial drinkers.
The new “masstige” label, Samuel Wynn & Co, will initially feature two reds priced under $20, with the company saying it wants to attract the attention of younger drinkers as boomers begin to cut back on their consumption.
Polish-born Wynn migrated to Australia just before the start of World War One to avoid military service. He made a name for himself in Melbourne as a wine and spirits merchant and restaurateur, buying his first wine business in 1918 and in the 1920s, creating his own label, Boronia.
He was a prominent Jewish community leader and Zionist, having lost more than 60 members of his extended family during the Holocaust. He reportedly smuggled small arms into Palestine on numerous trips before the state of Israel was established in 1948.
In 1951, with his son, David, they bought the vineyards John Riddoch established in the 1860s renaming it Wynns Coonawarra. It was the start of a new tradition that continues to this day, and putting Riddoch’s winery on the label created one of the country’s most recognisable wine logos. The thrice-married Wynn died in 1982, aged 91.
Treasury Wine Estates managing director Angus McPherson, said the new range builds on recent product launches such as 19 Crimes and the Lindeman’s Gentleman’s Collection.
“When we launched Gentleman’s Collection a few years ago, this was the first range of wines we specifically targeted to millennials, a group that under-indexed in wine at the time,” he said.
“Since then, we’ve focused on developing brand-led innovations and have seen the millennial segment take over baby boomers in wine consumption. They now represent one of our most important consumer segments.”
The first wines launched under the Samuel Wynn & Co label are ‘The Man From Nowhere’ shiraz 2016 and the ‘Last Rites’ cabernet sauvignon 2016, both priced at $19 RRP. The grapes are multi-regional.
McPherson said the angular, whisky-like bottle was designed to capture attention.
“The key to maintaining momentum with millennials is to think beyond traditional wine norms and make wine engaging and enjoyable,” he said.
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