E. & J. Gallo Winery announces acquisition of luxury California Brandy, Germain-Robin
MODESTO, Calif., (August 16, 2017) - E. & J. Gallo Winery (Gallo) announced today that it has purchased Germain-Robin, California’s first luxury brandy.
In 1981, Ansley J. Coale Jr. had a chance encounter along Highway 101 in Northern California with Hubert Germain-Robin of the Jules Robin family, Cognac producers since 1782. Hubert’s desire at that time was to create a small distillery using traditional craft-method distillation techniques. In 1982, he and Ansley established Germain-Robin. The two men began making brandies from premium California wine grapes. By the late 1990s, when Germain-Robin’s cellar had matured, their brandies gained attention as some of the world’s finest spirits recognized for their elegant, complex and distinct taste.
Ansley Coale and Hubert Germain-Robin were pioneers in the creation of critically-acclaimed world class California brandies, as well as innovatively blending Cognac traditions and techniques with California winemaking and premium grape varieties.
Gallo’s acquisition includes the Germain-Robin brand, the inventory of aged and aging brandies and all finished goods. These unique and irreplaceable aged inventories include brandy lots that are over 30 years old, crafted from a broad range of traditional Cognac and Armagnac grape varieties, as well as non-traditional varietals such as Pinot Noir and Zinfandel.
"It is a privilege to be entrusted with the stewardship of Germain-Robin’s California brandy legacy," said Ernest J. Gallo, General Manager of Gallo’s Spirits Business. "We are fortunate to have Ansley Coale and Joseph Corley, Hubert’s apprentice and current Germain-Robin distiller and cellarmaster, remain involved as part of the acquisition. We are pleased to continue delivering remarkable and unique California brandies that will appeal to whiskey and bourbon drinkers and other connoisseurs of brown spirits around the world."
"For decades, Germain-Robin has struggled to place brandy distilled from California wine where it belongs: a category, long overlooked, in fact worthy of inclusion at all levels among the world’s finest spirits," said founder Ansley Coale. "We hope — indeed intend — that our unique knowledge and capabilities, supported and augmented by, and carefully integrated into, Gallo’s deep experience and powerful resources in both production and marketing, will help bring brandy from California wine the recognition it so richly deserves."
International Wine Associates served as the exclusive financial advisor for Germain-Robin. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
About E. & J. Gallo Winery
Founded by brothers Ernest and Julio Gallo in 1933 in Modesto, California, E. & J. Gallo Winery is the world’s largest family-owned winery with more than 6,500 global employees and is the acclaimed producer of award-winning wines and spirits featured in more than 110 countries around the globe. A pioneer in the art of grape growing, winemaking, sustainable practices, marketing and worldwide distribution, Gallo crafts and imports wines and spirits to suit a diverse range of tastes and occasions, from everyday offerings to boutique, luxury bottlings.
The Gallo portfolio is comprised of more than 100 unique brands, including Barefoot Cellars, Dark Horse, and Gallo Family Vineyards, as well as premium box wines The Naked Grape and Vin Vault. Premium offerings include Apothic, Carnivor, Chateau Souverain, Columbia Winery, Ecco Domani, Edna Valley Vineyard, J Vineyards & Winery, Louis M. Martini, MacMurray Estate Vineyards, Mirassou, Orin Swift, Talbott Vineyards, and William Hill Estate, along with highly acclaimed imports, such as Alamos, Brancaia, La Marca, Las Rocas, Martín Códax, Whitehaven, and LUX Wines, importers of Allegrini, Argiano, Jermann, Pieropan and Renato Ratti. Gallo Spirits currently offers New Amsterdam Vodka and Gin, Familia Camarena Tequila, RumHaven, Lo-Fi Aperitifs, E&J Brandy, Argonaut Brandy, Germain-Robin Brandy, Diplomático Rum, as well as imported Scotch whiskies from Whyte & Mackay, including The Dalmore, Jura and John Barr.