E. & J. Gallo Winery Purchases Ledgewood Creek Winery and Vineyard

Plus other news and notes in the world of wine, spirits and beer.


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E. & J. Gallo Winery announced today it has purchased Ledgewood Creek Winery and Vineyard in Solano County for an undisclosed sum. Located in the North Coast AVA, the 400-acre ranch consists of approximately 230 acres of vineyard, which produces wine grapes including Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir. There are no immediate plans to operate the Ledgewood Creek Winery or tasting room.

A new reality TV show focusing on Michigan winemakers has begun filming. Dubbed Wine Warriors, the show will follow the three producers from the Traverse City-area’s 80 wineries. According to Detroit News, the show will highlight the state’s $300 million wine industry. Wine Warriors is currently being pitched to networks.

In addition to implementing its Evenings wine and beer program, Starbucks Corp. plans to roll out its new Fizzio handcrafted sodas in the U.S. and Asia this summer. Howard Schultz, chair for the Seattle-based company, said both programs are part of the company’s long-term goal of building traffic beyond morning hours.

Taco Bell Corporation is launching a more upscale taco restaurant targeting consumers who wouldn’t ordinarily eat at Taco Bell. The sit-down-only U.S. Taco Co. and Urban Taproom will open this summer in Huntington Beach, California, and offer tacos, serving wine and craft beer in the future. If successful, the company plans on expanding the franchise.

The Rioja DOCa council declared the 2013 vintage “good,” citing a difficult growing season. Since the 2004 vintage, the council rated each year’s wine either “very good” or “excellent,” according to the council’s report.

According to research group Wine Monitor, overall wine consumption in Italy has dropped 6.5 percent, while 2012 marked the lowest level of wine consumption since the 19th century. Experts attribute the decline to the changing Italian family lifestyle—with smaller families and less meals eaten together—and the rising popularity of beer in the country. 

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