Patron takes a shot with premium tequila launch
- For the first time in 25 years, tequila maker Patron is introducing a new premium tequila variety, according to Fortune. A bottle of the new brand, Extra Anejo, will cost $89.99 and is due out in September.
- The premium tequila is aged in oak barrels for more than three years, which is three times longer than its standard Anejo tequilas.
- While this is the company’s first new year-round product launch in a quarter of a century, Patron has occasionally introduced limited-time premium editions using the Extra Anejo name. Those varieties were aged for seven years and priced at $299 a bottle.
Consumers are spending more on premium and super-premium spirits, which continue to be a major driver for the overall alcoholic beverage category.
This growth is attributed to new consumer bases, a continually improving economy, the return of liquor advertisements on TV and shifting tastes of millennials. A survey last year found millennials drank more alcohol than Generation X and baby boomers, and researchers also have noted millennials experiment more often with alcohol brands and types. A lack of brand loyalty among younger adults poses an opportunity for alcohol makers to lure them to their brands with premium ingredients and unique flavor profiles.
Since 2002, tequila volumes have grown 106%, an average rate of 5.7% per year, according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States. Last year, tequila revenues were up 7.5%.
It seems there's no better time for the Mexican tequila maker to tap into this wave of popularity to introduce its first premium tequila variety in 25 years. Aged for three years in oak barrels, Patron’s new Extra Anejo gains a deeper color and flavor profile than its standard variety, which is aged for just a year. The premium version features hints of banana, honey and vanilla, enhancing the typical agave and oak flavors in the tequila, according to Fortune.
As consumers, particularly millennials, continue to experiment with alcoholic beverages, it's likely that an 18-year growth streak for distilled spirits will go on. This leaves craft and major brewers of wine and beer struggling against a category that offers consumers with wide-ranging palates the variety and experimentation they demand. Spirits makers — including Patron — are hoping the buzz doesn’t wear off too soon, but sustaining strong sales growth is a tall order for any category.
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