Riot Wine Co acquired by Carlton & United Breweries

Carlton & United Breweries has backed the keg and canned wine trend, acquiring Adelaide-based Riot Wine Co.

Recently featured on the Drinks Adventures podcast, Riot Wine Co is the only company in Australia that sells wine exclusively in kegs and cans, with a range of quality wines led by its canned rosé helping it to become the category leader.

“Anyone that opens a can, I want them to think, ‘wow, that was good value for money’,” co-founder Tom O’Donnell told the podcast.

“Our cans sell in a four pack of 250ml cans for around $28. But, I’d like to think we’re making $25 to $30 equivalent 750ml bottle standard in quality wines.

So, we’re definitely fighting up there in the quality spectrum. It’s not the cheapest wine on the market.”

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Announcing the CUB deal on Monday morning, O’Donnell said: “We are incredibly excited to be joining Carlton & United Breweries. Their investment, expertise and customer relationships will help us continue our rapid expansion.”

Riot co-founder and general manager Joe Cook said: “We launched Riot Wine Co to start a wine revolution in Australia by getting venues and consumers to switch from bottles to steel kegs and aluminium cans. Wine drank this way is fresher and easier plus it’s more sustainable because one keg saves roughly 23,000 bottles from entering the environment. Our kegs prevent wine oxidising and our wine has a fun and fresh taste profile, with less sulphur making it cleaner than traditional wine.”

Riot produces high-quality wine from South Australian grapes, supporting local producers in premium wine regions. The new investment by CUB will also see Riot’s urban cellar door upgraded in the Adelaide suburb of Brompton, creating a revamped hospitality space where wine lovers can sample and enjoy Riot products and food.

The partnership continues CUB’s investment into SA and follows the building of a new Pirate Life brewery in Port Adelaide last year.

CUB Sales VP – Australia and NZ, Rose Scott said: “We are committed to being the best beverage company in Australia and expanding our portfolio to meet the evolving needs of Australian drinkers. Riot Wine Co will help us do that. Riot Wine Co is a truly innovative company and CUB shares its commitment to quality and sustainability. Its rapid expansion in just three years shows venues and retailers agree that it can deliver great things for consumers.

“We plan to accelerate the expansion of this growing business through our large on-tap network and more than 100 years of draught experience.

“The Riot Wine Co team won’t change and management will stay on to ensure the elements that have helped drive the business’ success – a focus on quality wine from grape to glass, disruption and innovation, and the quality of its people and outstanding customer relationships – remain in place.”

More:
Canned wine trend is coming to Australia, says Tom O’Donnell of Riot Wine Co: Season Three, Episode Five

Author: James Atkinson

Accomplished freelance journalist and copywriter specialising in the food, drink, travel and hospitality arenas. Australian International Beer Awards 2017 Media Award Winner and Certified Cicerone®. Founder Drinks Adventures podcast.

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