Organic, Unique & Boutique: Marriott Introduces New Wine Portfolio With 150 Wines From Around the World

WASHINGTON, March 7 /PRNewswire/ — Marriott International, Inc. (NYSE:MAR) , one of the world’s top wine purchasers, today introduced their new Gold Standard wine portfolio. After two weeks of extensive blind tastings of over 650 wines, more than 70 new wines were added to the list, which features 150 wines from 88 different vintners. Marriott purchases over 400,000 cases of wine yearly.

“We feel our new wine portfolio truly represents the best wines in their categories,” said Robin Uler, Marriott’s senior vice president, food and beverage, retail and spas. “We added best in class limited quantity wines like Beaulieu Vineyards Georges de Latour Private Reserve for those looking to splurge on a special occasions, and high quality, great value wines such as Donnafugata Sedara Nero d’Avola, a red wine from Sicily.”

Many of the new wines selected address up and coming trends in wine consumption. For example, Marriott added Bonterra’s Organically Grown Viognier, the first time they have carried an organically produced wine and an unoaked chardonnay from Greg Norman Estates in California.

According to Brian Yost, vice president, restaurants and beverage, other trends represented in the new portfolio include products from several wine growing regions that are enjoying newfound popularity with consumers, such as Spain, Sicily, Argentina and South Africa, and high quality wines closed with screw tops, or Stelvin closures. Marriott added several wines from New Zealand vintner Kim Crawford that employ this revolutionary technology.

Yost added, “We are seeing a rise in the popularity of aromatic and rose wines. These wines, including new items like Saint M Riesling and Kim Crawford Pansy Rose, beautifully complement highly-seasoned foods well, such as Asian cuisines.”

In addition to wine, Marriott recently rolled out its Gold Standard spirits and beer portfolios after blind tastings of 95 spirits and 16 beers.

“We know our guests are still enjoying classic cocktails but with a new twist. An example is a recently developed cocktail, The Cosmo Thyme Ten. This is fruity, yet has new flavors with Tanqueray No. Ten and fresh thyme,” said Uler.

Other new trends in these areas include: flavored rums, premium gins, artisinal tequilas, organic beers and fruity brightly colored cocktails. For the first time, Marriott and Renaissance hotels will feature a portfolio of 12 flavored vodkas and 10 flavored rums, as well as an organic lager from Sam Smith.

There are over 1,000 restaurants and lounges in Marriott full-service hotels around the world. Marriott purchases approximately $90 million of wine, beer and spirits yearly.

MARRIOTT INTERNATIONAL, INC. (NYSE:MAR) is a leading lodging company with over 2,600 lodging properties in the United States and 65 other countries and territories. Marriott International operates and franchises hotels under the Marriott, JW Marriott, The Ritz-Carlton, Renaissance, Residence Inn, Courtyard, TownePlace Suites, Fairfield Inn, SpringHill Suites, and Bulgari brand names; develops and operates vacation ownership resorts under the Marriott Vacation Club International, Horizons, The Ritz-Carlton Club and Marriott Grand Residence Club brands; operates Marriott Executive Apartments; provides furnished corporate housing through its Marriott ExecuStay division; and operates conference centers. The company is headquartered in Washington, D.C., and has approximately 133,000 employees. It is ranked as the lodging industry’s most admired company and one of the best places to work for by Fortune(R) magazine. In fiscal year 2004, Marriott International reported sales from continuing operations of $10 billion. For more information or reservations, please visit our web site at http://www.marriott.com/.

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