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Tesco to launch priciest own-label ever

UK supermarket Tesco has doubled its Argentine wine range and next month will launch its most expensive own-label wine ever.

tesco finest
Tesco is to launch “Finest” Chassagne-Montrachet

Speaking to the drinks business at this week’s autumn press tasting, Tesco product development manager Laura Jewell MW said that the supermarket was now carrying twice the number of Argentine wines since a full range review in July, while drawing db’s attention to a launch planned for later in the year: Tesco Finest Chassagne-Montrachet.

Intending to hit shelves in mid-November, the white Burgundy is a premier cru from the 2011 vintage made by winemaker and producer Julie Belland.

Notably, with a price of £34.99, it will become Tesco’s most expensive own-label wine when it goes on sale, beating the previous top-priced Tesco Finest wine: a Pauillac from 2008 made by Château Grand-Puy Ducasse, and costing £30

Explaining the decision to list the high-priced white wine under the Tesco Finest label, Jewell said, “We found this amazing parcel and wanted to put it under the Tesco own-label.”

Jewell added that Tesco has secured three vintages of the Burgundy, while noting that it “wasn’t difficult” to sell other fine wines using the Tesco branding, such as the £30 Pauillac or a Margaux at £25, because “the packaging is very smart, and the Tesco Finest logo is just on the capsule”.

Tesco Finest PauillacSpeaking further about the extension to the Argentine wine range, Jewell said that the South American nation was “a country we believe in and it’s giving us good value for money”.

Adding that “Argentine Malbec is a style that people understand and it’s easy to find a food match,” she said that Tesco has “tried not to be all Malbec” when it came to the additional wines.

Indeed, among the new labels are Cuesta Del Madero Tempranillo, DV Catena Cabernet Franc and Alma Mora Barrel Select Shiraz.

Among other additions to the supermarket’s own-label wine range is a Denbies Estate Tesco Finest English White from the 2013 vintage – “they couldn’t make any for us in 2012” – and a Tesco Finest Slovenia Furmint, to complement an existing Riesling from the same country, as well as a Tesco Finest Prosecco from Cartizze.

When asked about the competition for wine customers from discount chains, such as Aldi and Lidl, which are placing greater emphasis on their wine ranges, Jewell said Tesco were concentrating on keeping prices low and quality high.

She said, “We are aware of what the discounters are doing and we are reacting accordingly… our core business is making sure that there is lots of wine at EDLP [every day low pricing] that satisfies our customers, so we are putting a lot of effort into everyday low pricing.”

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