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Off-Piste Wines launches varietal-led range, from the creator of 'I Heart' brand

Published:  26 May, 2015

Off-Piste Wines has launched a new mid-tier range of varietal-led wines that is targeting younger consumers in the convenience sector.

The Most Wanted range, which were sourced by Off-Pistes winemaker Clem Yates MW, has launched with six skus - a Prosecco from Treviso DOC, a Swartland Chenin Blanc, a Sauvignon Blanc from Hawkes Bay and a Pinot Noir from Nelson in New Zealand, an Albariño from Rías Baixas, and an Malbec from San Juan - but there are plans to introduce increasingly popular wines including potentially a Picpoul de Pinet.

Prices range from £7.99 - 9.99. 

The range was developed by Rachel Archer, who launched the "I heart" wine range for Copestick Murray in 2010, initially into the impulse channel but which subsequently became one of the fastest growing brands in the UK outside own label exclusives and a global wine brand. Archer joined Off-Piste Wines as new product development manager last August.

Archer said the idea behind the Most Wanted range was to demystify wine and make it less intimidating so that it was easier for people to understand and to trade up into less familar varietals. It is intended to be premium mainstream brands that appeals to the interested but not obsessive wine drinker, Archer said.

"I am passionate about wine being accessible to all consumers, and this is always at the forefront of our new product development. Wine can be intimidating and scary but it doesn't have to be. We want to strip all of that away and make it easy for people. Our plan for Most Wanted is to bring some great quality wines to the consumer whilst taking the snobbery, pomp and pretence around wine away - and inject some fun"

Off-Piste's owner and managing director Paul Letheren told the brand would not be going up against the I Heart Wine range per se. "Rather than go up against "I Heart", it is more of a brand for those customers, as well as many others - particularly millennials - to trade up a level and to have the confidence to experiment a little bit more with wine," he said.

The wines have been listed at The Coop and Booths and they will from this month.

The company has also launched The Duke, a 13.5% abv easy drinking blend of Tempranillo, Shiraz, Garnacha and Merlot from Campo de Borja and Manchuela  which has been listed by Morrison (rsp: £7.99).