Gallo draws on Stewart image

27 August, 2008
Page 11 
Martha Stewart is coming to a wine cellar near you - the iconic American homemaker has join ed with E&J Gallo, California's largest winery, to create Martha Stewart Vintage wines.

The first release will be limited to six regional markets in January, but a national rollout is expected later in 2008.

Some 15,000 cases of Sonoma County Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot will go on sale in Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Denver, Phoenix and Portland - all good wine markets, but not exactly in the New York-Miami-Chicago-Los Angeles league.

It has not been revealed how much of the US$15 retail price will go to Stewart, although she is known to drive a hard bargain.

A Gallo insider told Eye the deal was in the works in 2004, but when Stewart served prison time in a case involving stock trading, Gallo put the project on hold.

There is speculation that Gallo is initially aiming

at markets where women are not major wine consumers, counting on the Stewart image to bring in new drinkers.

It is doubtful Gallo would get behind a project that didn't involve sales of at least several hundred thousand cases, so by the end of 2008 Stewart may well be in cellars around the world.

Make sure yours is tidied up before she arrives.


Dominic Roskrow

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