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New range for Evans & Tate

Published:  23 July, 2008

Margaret River winery Evans & Tate, which has been in the midst of takeover talks, has launched its new X & Y range in the UK.

The range was launched in Australia in September, turning over A$500,000 in its first three months. Brand manager Jane Moulynox said that Margaret River wines were generally positioned in the traditional, premium category' but there was a need for a range targeted at a younger audience - a sector it had previously ignored.

The X & Y range comprises two whites (a Chardonnay and a Sauvignon Blanc) and two reds (a Cabernet/Merlot and a Shiraz). They will retail in the UK at 8.99.

Margaret River is renowned for its straight Cabernet Sauvignon, yet the X & Y Cabernet is blended with Merlot. Moulynox explained: It's a blend to make it more approachable for our target audience. These wines aren't for cellaring; they're for drinking.'

The region has escaped the droughts and frost affecting the majority of the country but the issue is still close to home. In the short term, Australia is going to lose money and get screwed up but in the longer term, the reduced 2007 crop is a get-out-of-jail-free card for us.

Retail chains won't be able to screw us any more, as the demand for Aussie wines will still exist, but with less supply, and customers will realise the real worth of our wines.'

Following the rejection of Yarraman's initial bid for the company, Moulynox had hinted at a new future direction: There were holes with the Yarraman deal and since the rejection, we may have found a way to patch the financial situation up without the takeover.'

Yarraman entered a revised bid for Evans & Tate on 1 February, which was due to remain open until 7 February.