(by Shanken News Daily) Extending its foray into spirits, The Wine Group (TWG) has entered the rum and low-calorie premix cocktail categories with the launch of Flipflop rum and Lulu B. Fabulous Cocktails, respectively. An extension of TWG’s fast-rising Flipflop wine range, Flipflop rum features both silver and spiced expressions, priced at $13.99 a 750-ml. and $22.99 a 1.75-liter. The rums are currently shipping into select U.S. markets. Flipflop rum follows the 2010 rollout of Flipflop wines, which last year shipped 600,000 cases in the U.S., according to Impact Databank. “Rum is a large and growing spirits segment, and a logical next step in Flipflop’s evolution,” says Jeff Dubiel, EVP of marketing for Flipflop.
Lulu B. Fabulous Cocktails, meanwhile, are a spin-off of the Lulu B. wine brand, owned by Montreal-based Kruger Wines and Spirits and marketed by TWG in the U.S. TWG subsidiary Underdog Wine & Spirits will import the newly launched premix range, which features Chocolate Martini, Margarita, Cran Cosmo and Mojito cocktails, each with 37-48 calories per serving. Retailing for $14.99 a 750-ml., Lulu B. Fabulous Cocktails are priced in line with Beam’s Skinnygirl cocktails, which reached 586,000 cases on nearly 300% growth last year (Skinnygirl’s flagship Margarita weighs in at 38 calories a serving). The full Lulu B. cocktail lineup will be available nationwide by April 1.
The Wine Group’s other spirits labels include Cupcake vodka, which recently released two new flavors, Ginger Snap and Verry Berry, and depleted 100,000 cases last year, as well as Coyote Gold All Natural Margarita.