As a wine enthusiast, I enjoy seeking out new trends in the wine industry. You see as a Stellenbosch (part of the wine district in South Africa) local I feel it is important to be able to at least mumble a few intelligent sounding sentences at a braai so as not to seem too much out of place.
Jonathan Ray writes in his article titled, Wine Trends of the Noughties that “if the Noughties are to be remembered for anything, it’s for making pink wine acceptable. This market continues to grow both abroad (as Ray notes that the category now accounts for 12 percent of the UK off-trade and is worth some 533 million pounds) and locally as SAWIS reports a substantial growth in Blanc de Noir / Rosé produced in South Africa, with the total number of litres produced in 2009 being 6 429 240.
SHIFT TOWARDS GREAT VALUE FOR LESS
Ray continues in his article, that due to the high prices being charged for wine in the French regions of Bordeaux and Burgundy, a noticeable trend developed which has seen a shift towards great value but lesser-known regional wines. He continues that this trend has intensified over the last several months due to the economic crisis which befell Europe.
The green movement is clearly here to stay, to the relief of many environmentaly aware consumers. An annual survey from Packaging Digest stated that nearly two-thirds of their 1,012 respondents stated that consumer demand from both retailers and customers is driving the focus on eco-friendly packaging.
INNOVATION IN PACKAGING
In order to make wine more popular to the emerging Generation X, winemakers and wine marketers have taken to the drawing board to make wine entertaining through quirky packaging such as the Drink ‘n’ Stick Wine, which lets the consumer play dress-up with their wine bottle which features a 1950’s pin up girl dressed in nothing but lingerie.
WHAT’S IN A NAME
The trend in noticeable packaging has also been carried over into naming wines. Carolyn Paluch has created a range of wines which plays with pronunciation on the wine labels. The phonetic wine range is aptly titled Vee-Noh and the cheeky packaging is definitely an attention grabber.
FOOD AND WINE PAIRING
Many connoisseurs insist on the specific pairing of food of wines as an art form. That is why I found the trendhunter.com article on food specific wines so entertaining. The range was created for Archer & Vine’s by British graphic designer Matt Davey and features two red wines along with a white wine and a rosé. The wines have names such as “The Lost Sheep” which is a red blend meant to be paired with cottage or shepherd’s pie.
Two of my most favourite things in the world are ice cream and wine. To my happy surprize and amazement, it seems as though I am not the only person who sees the beauty in this pairing. A company in New York Wine Cellar Sorbets produces sorbet from wine. They boast on their website that each flavour is truly unique as it is based on the vintages, varietals and viticulture regions where the wines were produced. Another bonus is that the sorbets are all natural, non-alcoholic and are fat, gluten and dairy free.
WINE AND THE WORLD CUP
A recent article posted on iAfrica.com titled, Wine wins World Cup, details the positive effect that the World Cup has had on the South African wine industry. The author writes that the wine industry is one of the sectors to have derived a tangible benefit from South Africa’s hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, with packaged exports still on the rise, despite the continued strength of the rand and the protraction of the worldwide recession.
These are just some of the quirky trends that I found, please feel free to post a comment if you find any other noteworthy wine trends.