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Safeway is promoting eyecatching wines that take the guesswork out of food pairings and special occasions
<p> Safeway is promoting eye-catching wines that take the guesswork out of food pairings and special occasions.</p>

Safeway Debuts Occasion-Based Wine

PLEASANTON, Calif.Safeway is merchandising nine SKUS of exclusive wine sheathed in eye-catching wraps that tell a story, present a recipe or celebrate a special occasion.

The giftable wines include Curious Beasts, a red blend made for a Halloween celebration; Schuck’s pinot noir, designed to be paired with fish; and Fuschsia, a white blend geared toward the “girls gone summer” consumer.

The Evocative Wrapped Bottles line was created for 22 buying occasions by wine maker Truett-Hurst and package designer Kevin Shaw of Stranger & Stranger. Wines are priced from $11.99 to $29.99, with a champagne that retails for $49.99, said Phil Hurst, chief executive officer of Truett-Hurst.

Read more: Spirit Sales Outpace Wine in Grocery

The wine comes at a time when occasional drinkers tend to select bottles that have the most interesting labels. This is especially true of the 20- and 30-somethings who’ve spurred much of the 9% jump in wine consumption in the past year. According to a report citing Wine Market Council research, 60% of those ages 26 to 34 find “fun and contemporary looking” wine labels of great importance when purchasing wine.

“You’d be amazed at some of the research that’s been done with consumers who’ve tasted the wine blind without seeing the package versus tasting it after they’ve seen the package,” said Shaw. “They have a totally different perception of the wine."

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