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Wine role for Newman's range

27 August, 2008
Page 11 
Film legend Paul Newman decided there was something missing from his 100-plus Newman's Own product range, so he's adding wine to the mix.

The deal is currently being kept under wraps, but we did learn that a Newman's Own Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay will be unveiled early next year.

The wine will be made by Rebel Wine , a joint venture between Three Thieves and Trinchero Family Estates, both based in Napa. As with all Newman's Own ventures, all after-tax profits will go to charity.

One of Newman's first products, a wine vinegar, was packaged in old wine bottles.

"We have come full circle," the actor and philanthropist said in a statement. "We 've gone back to wine bottles, but this time we are filling them with a wine that will complement my salad dressing and pasta sauce. Wine was the only thing missing at dinner time - now the meal is complete."

A spokesperson for Trinchero, one of California's largest wineries with annual production of a round 10 million cases, said the bottle labels " won't be released until January."

Rebel Wine is known for the innovative packaging of its Three Thieves wines. They were the first Napa wines to be sold in a 1-litre screwcap jug and sold in a TetraPak.

The spokesperson confirmed the wines would be sourced from "premium coastal vineyards" and would not, at least in the beginning, be organic. Many of Newman's other products are organic. The wine will sell at US$16 for a 75 cl bottle.

Newman's venture into the wine business follows the news that E&J Gallo will market a Martha Stewart line of wines next year - a venture that is most decidedly "for profit".

Since the launch of Newman's Own in 1982, the company has donated a round $200 million to various charities.