SEATTLE (FNS) -- Larry's Markets here spotlighted a local winemaker this past month in its latest effort to create a point of difference with oenophiles.
Boutique winemaker Eric Dunham and his winery, Dunham Cellars, was featured with tastings, winemaker appearances, displays and discounts. The six-unit independent promoted the featured winery and its extensive wine program on KIRO, a local radio station.
With a cult-like following, the Walla Walla, Wash.-based winery is widely distributed in the state. Larry's Markets promoted Dunham Cellars in direct-mail advertising to members of its Epicurean Association and through the radio mentions.
In stores, special displays of Dunham Cellars' newest releases attracted customers to the wine department. In one unit SN visited, the display was clearly visible from the main traffic pattern. A case display, with open boxes of four new releases within easy arm's reach, was capped off by a poster with tasting notes of each selection.
"Cassis and minty black cherry dominate this richly structured and balanced wine," described Dunham's 2001 cabernet sauvignon. In the 2003 syrah, "Generous bright fruit notes blended strategically with dark earthen overtones make this one of the most exciting syrahs Eric Dunham has produced."
The wines were priced in a range of $47 for the cabernet and syrah to $18.99 for Three Legged Dog, a red table wine named for the winemaker's three-legged pet. Discounted prices to members of the Epicurean Association ranged from $39.99 for the cabernet and syrah to $16.14 for Three Legged Dog.
Also in October, Larry's Markets featured a selection of Italian imports and Davey Family Wines of Australia.
The retailer also promotes wine by having wine stewards at most locations and through its Epicurean Association. For $40 per year, Association members get discounts on wine purchases and advance notice of new releases, offers and events, plus discounts on foods and cooking tools.