How the Rosé Piscine brand of rosé on ice became a runaway success, and spearheads the French wine range in Brazil

Tuesday May 25 2021 by Vitisphere

 To mark its success in the Brazilian market, Rosé Piscine is releasing its first limited edition label with a sleeve featuring the colourful waves of Copa Cabana beach. To mark its success in the Brazilian market, Rosé Piscine is releasing its first limited edition label with a sleeve featuring the colourful waves of Copa Cabana beach. - Photo credit : Vinovalie

Rosé Piscine has become a staple of the wine department with the equivalent of 1.9 million bottles in sales”, says Jacques Tranier, managing director of Vinovalie, a co-operative group with 400 members and 3,800 hectares of bearing vines in Cahors, Fronton and Gaillac. Launched in 2004, the Rosé Piscine brand – which “absolutely must be savoured on the rocks” – racked up sales of 1.5 million bottles and 93,000 boxes from May 1, 2020 to April 30, 2021, increasing respectively by 34 and 25% compared to the previous moving annual total.

To say that the brand’s success was a foregone conclusion fifteen years ago, though, would be a vast overstatement. “The initial reaction was criticism. People condemned it, telling us that putting ice cubes in a glass of wine was outrageous”, recalls Tranier, who feels the brand’s success can be ascribed to the extremely high standards at source – and to a certain degree of stubbornness in pursuing the project. After being criticised by the advocates of tradition, further down the line “people told us that it was a fad, that it would die a death”, says Tranier, who believes that the fad was more about the rosé with grapefruit range.

The brand's leading market is super/hypermarkets, where sales total 775,000 bottles (+20%) and 91,000 boxes (+25%). “A wine without a geographical indication retailing above €4.5 is not commonplace at these volumes in a section where non-GI wines sell for €2”, points out Tranier. Totalling 645,000 bottles (+65%), overseas sales have surged. “It took exports a long time to get off the ground, because the French are the leading consumers of rosés”, explains Vinovalie’s director, who highlights the concept’s success in Brazil.

Rosé Piscine dominates sales of French wines, and is the leading brand sold there by volume. “Brazil is a tropical country. Ice cubes are something we like”, points out importer Rogerio Rebouças, who launched his first imports of Rosé Piscine in 2015. He remembers how “the reluctance came more from the sommeliers, but Rosé Piscine is a wine for newbies whose drinking habits are not too strict”.

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