News
Portuguese Wines Rise In U.S. As Domestic Market Struggles
Economy
23 July 13
With Portugal’s domestic wine market challenged by the country’s ongoing economic crisis, Portuguese winemakers have been casting their sights abroad—and finding solid growth in export markets like the U.S. According to Impact Databank, Portugal’s bottled table wine shipments to the U.S. have increased by roughly one-third since 2006, rising 3.4% to 1 million cases last year. One Portuguese player, Alentejo-based Esporão, has been intensifying its efforts in the U.S. lately. The company—whose wines are imported by Aidil Wines in the East and Vinum Importing in the West—opened 10 new U.S. markets this year and is now in 40 states. In particular, its entry into California and a placement of its Monte Velho red ($11 a 750-ml.) at Whole Foods have helped grow U.S. volume by 13% year-to-date through June, says global sales director Diogo Melo e Castro. In addition to Monte Velho, Esporão’s brand portfolio also includes Alandra ($8) and Esporão Reserva ($15) and sells around 60,000 cases in the U.S. annually. “Portugal is progressing from being seen as an exotic wine region to a more serious part of the market,” says Castro. “We want to speed that development.” In prior years, Esporão exported around one-third of its 1.3-million-case production; now, owing to Portugal’s economic difficulties and a sharper focus on exports, the company sends about two-thirds of production abroad. Leading Portuguese winemaker Sogrape is also rapidly expanding its U.S. business—both through its own Evaton Inc. unit and Pernod Ricard USA, which markets its Sandeman Ports. Evaton, based in Connecticut, handles Sogrape’s Gazela, Mateus and Grão Vasco brands from Portugal (its portfolio also includes non-Portuguese Sogrape labels like Finca Flichman and agency brands like Ramazzotti). Gazela, specializing in Vinho Verde at under $10 a bottle, was up 9% to 95,000 cases in the U.S. last year, and has more than tripled since 2006. “Gazela is developing well, and we’re convinced it will continue to grow,” says Júlio Martins, Sogrape’s international sales and marketing director. “We think the brand and the light Vinho Verde style fit perfectly with the U.S. consumer.” On the Port side, Sogrape has been working with Pernod to premiumize Sandeman and extend its reach into new audiences and consumption occasions, like cocktails. “We’ve been seeding for years, and Portuguese wines are now seeing positive signs at the consumer level,” Martins says. “It’s encouraging, but there’s still more work to do.”
Lastest News

9 September 21

Wines of Portugal is one of the sponsors of the Danish Association of Sommeliers

Wines of Portugal is one of the sponsors of the Danish Association of Sommeliers in 2021.

Read more about the Danish Sommeliers Association here: https://sommelier.dk.

Read more

Events

8 September 21

Wines of Portugal participates in the 5th Global Wine Tourism Conference

The 5th Global Wine Tourism Conference this year takes place in Portugal, from the 8th to the 10th of September, in Monsaraz.

Wines of Portugal collaborates with Portugal’s Tourism Institute in this initiative through the organization of a Masterclass, which will take place on the first day of the event (September 8th), from 12:00 to 14:30, where there will be a Wine Tasting of the 14 Portuguese Wine Regions addressed to around 50 international participants who will be at the Conference.

Read more
Press ENTER to search or ESC to close
Cookies

Wines of Portugal uses cookies to enhance your online experience. By using this website you agree to our cookies policy.

More