Champagne Wishes and Vending Machine Dreams

Moet & Chandon stuffs vending machines with small bottles of brut and rosé.
The Champagne Vending Machine at the Pendry San Diego / Photo courtesy of Moet & Chandon

The plop of a golden token now proceeds the pop of the bottle for Moet & Chandon fans who frequent the Pendry San Diego, a new hotel in the seaside city’s Gaslamp District. That’s where the Champagne producer installed a vending machine that sells 187 mL bottles of brut and rosé bubbles.

It’s one of three in the United States. The first was at Mandarin Oriental Hotel. The others can be found at Caesar’s Palace’ in Las Vegas and the Ritz Carlton in Los Angeles.

The Company spokesmen would not provide sales estimates or targets for the Moet Mini Vending Machines.

However, Pendry spokeswoman Jessica Martin said, “It was unveiled on Sept. 21, and we sold nearly 300 that first weekend.” The machine holds 320 bottles and has been a hit on social media. The hotel has six restaurants and bars, including the cocktail-focused Fifth & Rose and the three-meal hub of Provisional Kitchen and Mercantile, where the vending machine lives. “With our heavy food and beverage program, they thought we would be the perfect fit,” said Martin.

The token comes with a top that allows one to drink straight from the bottle, although a flute can be requested. The bottles can be taken anywhere on the property, including hotel rooms, the spa, or any of the dining establishments. “Fifth & Rose can turn it into a cocktail for you, and Provisional will give you fresh juice to build your own mimosa or Bellini,” said Martin.

“As a whole, Champagne consumption is becoming deformalized as consumers are making everyday moments, moments worth celebrating with a bottle of Champagne,” said Kenny Moore, brand director for Moet & Chandon. The company is trying to get other luxury locations to accept the machine.

“The vending machine combines this consumption pattern with a more accessible form of distribution.” The company has been “thrilled” with the popularity, he said.

Moet & Chandon is part of the LVMH empire, which has seen its shares on the Paris stock exchange soar 52 percent over the last 52 weeks, handily beating the 20 percent gain that the benchmark Paris CAC 40 saw for the same period.

Published on October 6, 2017
Topics: Latest News
About the Author
Matt Kettmann
Contributing Editor

Reviews wines from California.

A fifth generation Californian originally from San Jose, Matt Kettmann covers California’s Central Coast and South Coast for the magazine. He is also the senior editor of The Santa Barbara Independent, where he’s worked since 1999, has written for the New York Times, Time Magazine, Wine Spectator, and Smithsonian, and co-founded New Noise Santa Barbara, a music festival.

Email: mkettmann@wineenthusiast.net.



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