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Mark West Captures Back-to-Back Impact Hot Brand Awards, Drives US Pinot Noir Sales

3 April, 2012

Graton, CA— Purple Wine Company is honored to announce that Mark West has been awarded the Impact Hot Brand Award in 2011 for the second year in a row. As the best-selling Pinot Noir nationwide, with an IRI annual revenue growth rate of 27%, Mark West was a natural candidate for the award. The Impact Hot Brand Award is given by M. Shanken Communications annually to established brands that achieve superior sales growth and performance in the marketplace.

Additionally, Mark West was named one of Symphony IRI’s Top 30 Momentum Table Wine Brands in food and drug stores for 2011, achieving the honor of being the only Pinot Noir-focused brand in the Top 30 Momentum Brands group. Pinot Noir was the nation’s fastest growing key varietal in 2011, up 12% overall. Pinot Noir priced from $10 to $14, up 28%, is the fastest growing of all key varietal price segments, according to the 2011 Gomberg Frederickson Report. Mark West leads the growth in this dynamic segment.

“We’ve built Mark West with focused sales and marketing strategies, investment in wine quality, and enthusiastic support from our distributors and trade accounts,” says Derek Benham, CEO of Purple Wine Company, speaking about the success of his company’s flagship brand. “In 2002, there simply wasn’t affordable Pinot Noir. Mark West changed all that and continues to be the Pinot that is recognized for its quality and style.”

Mark West’s total volume growth continues to soar, rising 33% during the twelve-week period that ended February 19, 2012. This success builds on 10 years of double-digit growth for both the Mark West brand and for Purple Wine Company, whose volume has grown on average over 40% each year over the past decade.

About Purple Wine Company

Purple Wine Company was founded in 2001 by Derek Benham and is based in Graton, California. Its mission is to create wines that offer outstanding value, are high quality and consistent in style from vintage to vintage. The wines are produced at its sister production company, Sonoma Wine Company, using water and energy conservation practices, while reducing Greenhouse gas emissions. Current brands include Mark West, Avalon, Four Vines, and Bex. For more information, please or contact Katie Hunter of Charles Communications Associates at 415.701.9463 or