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“Cool Cat is going to be built on-premise once things lift again,” says Venneri. The brand is already available for purchase at high-end New York spots like The Standard Hotel, STK Downtown and Bottino.
“We’re not going to be in the bodegas and CVS and where a lot beer and hard seltzer brands are sold,” Venneri says. “This is an exploratory brand for consumers. I do think there will be a lot of pickup for RTDs at upscale on-premise. You can walk around with a canned cocktail at pool areas, country clubs and hotels.”
“The biggest thing for us is educating the consumer,” says Venneri of Cool Cat.
“We’re not a spiked seltzer. We’re in the cooler as an RTD, but standing out in quality. It will take some time to educate the consumer, who still looks at the category as an all-in-one.”
This is especially important when a 4-pack of Cool Cat wine spritzers costs $17.99.
“On our branding we try to hammer home why that’s a better value than buying a 6-pack of malt-based seltzer,” Venneri says. “We show how what our 4-pack represents in terms of a bottle of wine: how four cans equals two whole bottles. For a consumer who can afford a $15 or $20 bottle of wine, that sounds good to me. Part of our overall branding is to educate the consumer.”
“A can also reduces the waste involved,” he adds. “It’s a lot different than opening a bottle of wine on a Wednesday and then wasting the rest. RTD wine spritzers are great for people who want to drink casually.”