Thursday, August 2, 2018

Made with Organic Grapes: Top 10 Bestselling Wines - Bellissima (#9), A Christie Brinkley Wine

Number 9 on the list of bestselling wines in the "Made with Organic Grapes" category is Bellissima, organic Prosecco and sparkling wines from Italy.

Just like movie stars Brad and Angelina, supermodel Christie Brinkley has a wine brand - only hers is organically grown. And has bubbles. Bellissima comes in three types: regular ($20), rosé ($21) or zero sugar ($24), which is for diabetics or people who are on a diet, Brinkley says.

Those price points are well above those of Tiamo Prosecco (which sells for $15.99 on Since both are organic, I guess you pay more for the model. Perhaps having Botticelli's Venus on the label is worth more than Tiamo's sunflower.

Launched in 2016, Brinkley, now in her early 60's, is the face of Bellissima, and a tireless promoter she is, appearing on CBS, at the wine's launch in Vegas, and at many other venues to drive home the marketing messages.

In an interview in the Dallas Morning News, where Brinkley was in town to appear with the wine at local supermarkets, she is quoted as saying, "When I first started drinking wine, I wondered why there weren't more organic wines out there."

Here she is with Jane Pauley on the CBS TV magazine show Sunday Morning: 

The brand's web site is definitely aimed at a female audience and its Instagram feed is plenty active.

In rolling out the brand to Publix supermarket chain's 1,150 stores in 2017, Iconic Brands predicted Bellissima would hit 100,000 case production, based in part on prominently promoting the Zero, which is the only organically grown wine competing in the low-cal wine space pioneered by Skinnygirl (which now has a $15 Prosecco) and Skinny Vine ($11). 

(The Skinnies are not really that much lower in calories than other sparkling wines).

Skinnygirl was started by reality TV star Bethenny Frankel while she was on the show Real Housewives of New York City in 2009. Frankel sold the liquor licensing rights to Beam in 2012 for $8 million. (Frankel has famously retained the brand name for all of her other product lines). She originally started with Skinny Girl margaritas and later expanded into wines. 
Skinnygirl founder Bethenny Frankel
In 2013, Treasury Wine Estate launched The Skinny Vine, which is endorsed by Christine Avanti, author of Skinny Chicks Eat Real Food.

It's worth watching this space to see what supermodel influence like Brinkley's can do to move the needle for a brand and how closely "Made with Organic Grape" wines can move with the broader wine trends.

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