Chardonnay comes back into fashion

By Robyn Black

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Chardonnay

Accolade is looking to revive the Chardonnay varietal
Accolade is looking to revive the Chardonnay varietal
Accolade Wines, maker of Hardys and Echo Falls, is hoping to rid the world of the ABC (anything but Chardonnay) crowd with a new campaign to revive the misunderstood varietal.

Made famous by Bridget Jones and hugely popular in the ‘90s, a consumer backlash against the grape saw it fall from favour and replaced with a fashion for the much fresher Pinot Grigio.

But this new campaign hopes to put to bed the era of “buttery, oaked” Chardonnays and issue in a new era of aromatic, light wine, Accolade’s UK general manger, Paul Schaafsma said.

The “Five Generations of Devotion” campaign goes live later this week, starting with a burst of advertising on press and poster ads at over 4,000 high street sites. 

Hardys campaign

“This campaign is part of the overall objective to reinforce Hardys position as the UK’s leading Australian wine brand,” explained Schaafsma.

“In addition to the outdoor media we will be running ads in press and campaign, all in all we anticipate the campaign will reach 80% of the adult population in the UK and have a media value in excess of £1.8m - making us one of the category’s leading investors.”

There are also plans for an extensive Twitter campaign with the hashtag #AllAboutChardonnay  or “AAC” to replace ABC, and a sampling campaign for Hardys Chardonnay that should reach 100,000 consumers.

Chardonnay revival

According to a poll undertaken by the company, the noble varietal is already showing signs of a comeback with 18% of consumers are drinking more Chardonnay than they were a year ago and another 18% believe Chardonnay’s reputation is improving. Some 15% of those surveyed think that the varietal has “really improved in palate and flavour.”

Recent Nielsen data shows Australian Chardonnay is performing particularly well, growing by 6.9% MAT in comparison to 1.4% growth for Chardonnay overall, the company said.

Hardys celebrated its 160th anniversary this year with a multi-million pound marketing spend and a new look.

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