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Taplines: How Beer Boosted the First Wine Cooler Boom

Nothing exists in a vacuum, and beer is certainly no exception. The history of the brewing industry is littered with instances of significant influence and interference from beyond the category (see: Tequiza). But unlike Anheuser-Busch’s Corona killer that wasn’t, today’s episode is about a beer- adjacent product that did take off, moving cases like crazy in the ‘80s and putting bev alc executives in every category on notice.

When Stuart Bewley and his cofounder dreamed up the idea for California Cooler, a single-serve, fermented, fruit-based ready-to-drink in the mid-’70s, they couldn’t have known that it would inspire knockoffs from heavyweights in the wine industry (e.g., E. & J. Gallo’s Bartles and Jaymes) and the beer industry, too (Miller’s Matilda Bay, for example). And get this: Bewley says the long-running boycott of a certain big-on-the-West-Coast brewer was instrumental in getting California Cooler onto the trucks of distributors that otherwise might not have had anything to do with it.

Today on “Taplines,” Dave Infante is joined by Stuart Bewley to discuss the first-ever wine cooler, an RTD Cinderella story. Tune in for more.

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The article Taplines: How Beer Boosted the First Wine Cooler Boom appeared first on VinePair.

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