Uncorkings 1.2.12

News and notes from the world of wine.

Pernod Ricard’s Absolut Vodka has released an all-natural white grape, dragon fruit and papaya flavored product called Absolut Gräpevine. Set to be released later this month, the new addition will cost $21 and will be available in 1-liter, 750-ml and 50-ml bottles.

Napa Valley’s Grgich Hills Estate appointed Chris Berry northeast regional sales manager to oversee sales in the states stretching from Maine to Washington, D.C. Berry has worked in the wine industry for 17 years, and has held positions at Robert Mondavi Winery and Constellation Brands.

On Tuesday, December 20, Ron Rubin, owner of the premium tea brand The Republic of Tea, acquired River Road Vineyards and Winery in the Sonoma County community of Forestville, adding the production of ultrapremium wine to his quality beverage holdings.

Last week, on December 26, Forrest Klaffke, lead winemaker of Willamette Valley Vineyards in Turner, Oregon, passed away at the age of 56. Klaffke, who was known for his passion for Pinot Noir, lost his battle with cancer after two years in remission.

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