Connecticut Distributors Inc. Welcomes New President
John Parke worked for E&J Gallo for 33 years, most recently as Managing Director, Western U.S., based in California. He was lured east in 2013 by The Charmer Sunbelt Group (CSG), and worked out of their New York office as VP Business Development, focusing on building sales of all Gallo brands across all markets. Parke had a ringside seat to last year’s merger between CSG and Wirtz Beverage, which created the combined Breakthru Beverage Group. When former Connecticut Distributors Inc. President Brian Albenze was tapped as Breakthru’s Executive VP, Commercial Strategy, Parke was named his successor, and officially took his new post in April. Read an interview with John Parke at The Beverage Journal.
CDI Adds Stoli Gluten Free Vodka and Storypoint Vineyards
Connecticut Distributors Inc. (CDI) welcomed new items to its portfolio, introducing the brands, during a May sales meeting. They now represent Stoli Gluten Free Vodka, made with naturally gluten-free corn and buckwheat harvested in the Tambov region of Russia, and Storypoint Vineyards wines, a collection of wines from California’s best growing regions, including Sonoma County, Mendocino County and Lake County, San Luis Obispo and San Joaquin counties. Read more at The Beverage Journal.
CDI Presents Check to ALS Conn. Chapter
Connecticut Distributors Inc. (CDI) and Brancott Wines raised $1,000 for the ALS Association Connecticut Chapter and presented the group with a check on April 1. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a degenerative disease and the association supports research, as well as patient and family resources. In the month of February, CDI employees participated in a Fitbit challenge. The staff as a whole had to hit a goal of 12 million steps. If this goal was met, Brancott Wines would donate $500 and CDI matched their donation. CDI has long supported the local ALS charity. Read more at The Beverage Journal.
CDI and Mezzo Grille Host Second Annual Bourbon Dinner
Mezzo Grille in Middletown hosted their second annual Bourbon Dinner on March 10. Culinary creations by Chef Bruce Riley accompanied Knob Creek, Widow Jane, Amador Double Barrel and Maker’s Mark Strength bourbons. Guest speaker Nadine Gengras of Connecticut Distributors Inc. (CDI) was on hand to educate guests about related bourbon brands. Read more at The Beverage Journal.
CDI Launches New Products in March Sales Meeting
Connecticut Distributors Inc. (CDI) launched several new products during a March sales meeting. CDI is now serving as the exclusive distributor for Joel Gott Wines from Trinchero Family Estates. Also launched were Blue Nectar Tequila, a small batch blue agave tequila, and Belvedere Peach Nectar, its newest flavor in the vodka line. Read more at The Beverage Journal.
CDI Presents Fundraising Check to Connecticut Food Bank
Pernod Ricard and Connecticut Distributors Inc. (CDI) presented the Connecticut Food Bank with a check for $14,284, which will afford the nonprofit to serve 28,568 meals. The program, which started six years ago, features Sonoma’s Kenwood Vineyard Wines and CDI donating two meals for each bottle of Kenwood Vineyard Wines sold during the month of November. The 2015 campaign saw 1,190 cases sold, a 20 percent increase from 2014. Read more at The Beverage Journal.
CDI Awards Staff, Hosts WSWC at November Meeting
During a sales meeting on Nov. 6, 2015, Connecticut Distributors Inc. (CDI) presented 14 employees with their Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) certificates upon successful passing of the course. After the WSET presentation, Edgar Garcia, CDI’s CFO and COO, introduced Larry Cafero, Executive Director of the Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of Connecticut (WSWC). Cafero spoke about the importance of educating others about the wholesaler tier of distribution and about the WSWC’s role. Read more at The Beverage Journal.
CK Mondavi, CDI Partner for Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund
CK Mondavi Family Winery partnered with Connecticut Distributors Inc. (CDI) to raise donations for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund (IFHF), a program that supports wounded military personnel. CDI donated $3,800 to the fund. On Oct. 14, 2015, CDI staff and CK Mondavi Family representatives visited the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York to present the check to IFHF. Read more at The Beverage Journal.
Trade Guests Experience CDI Portfolio, Raise Charitable Funds
Connecticut Distributors Inc. (CDI) hosted their annual CDI Experience Wine and Spirits on Oct. 6 at the High Rollers Luxury Lanes and Lounge inside Foxwoods Casino and Resort. In its seventh year running, CDI has partnered with Connecticut Food Bank and donated $5 for each case sold the day of the event. In those years, CDI has been able to provide 200,000 meals to the Connecticut Food Bank. Area bartenders mixed it up in a cocktail competition during the event. Read more at The Beverage Journal.
CDI Hosts Brand Ambassadors, Launches Products, Wins Award
The first visitor was Josh Pearson, Brand Ambassador, for Absolut, who presented a tasting session about the brand’s “one source” distillery in Ahus, Sweden. Later in the month, Philip Pepperdine, the East Coast Bourbon Ambassador for Beam Suntory, presented Maker’s Mark, Maker’s 46, Basil Hayden, Knob Creek, and Knob Creek Rye. And third, Simon Brooking, Brand Ambassador for Laphroaig and John Campbell, the Distillery Manager for Beam Global’s Laphroaig, visited from the Isle of Islay. Read more at The Beverage Journal.
CDI Celebrates Expansion, Employee Efforts
On Oct. 19, 2015, Connecticut Distributors Inc. (CDI) celebrated the expansion of their operations building and warehouse space in a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The official groundbreaking was almost a year ago to the date, on Sept. 25, 2014. After 95 truckloads of cement, the new building extension can hold an additional 80,000 cases of product in 40,000 additional square feet, with extra height for incremental storage space. Read more at The Beverage Journal.