Heaven Hill Relaunches Dubonnet Rouge Aperitif

Heaven Hill Brands has brought back the historic aperitif brand Dubonnet Rouge.

Originally launched in 1846, Dubonnet returns in 2018 in a vintage package with an updated recipe.

Bottles will hit shelves this month.

Dubonnet is grounded in traditional flavor basics, the company says, as the new formula incorporates a key ingredient used since 1846, Cinchona Bark, which was originally discovered as a cure to common illnesses in the 1600’s. This is combined with a base of wine incorporating Muscat of Alexandria, herbs and spices, including black currant and tea varietals, and 100% cane sugar.

“The new Dubonnet formula offers a complex, well-balanced cocktail companion backed by the highest standards of quality for more than 170 years,” says Lynn House, Heaven Hill Brands national brand educator. 

Inspired by a 1940’s bottle, the updated packaging features the cat of Sir Dubonnet’s wife that now lives on various versions of the bottle throughout history. Sir Joseph Dubonnet, a Paris pharmacist and wine merchant, developed a fortified-wine aperitif that contained the Cinchona medicine as a more flavorful option. As most classic spirits originate, the fortified wine soon became a common cocktail component.

Dubonnet Rouge will be available in the 750-ml. and 1-L sizes bottled, at 38 proof, at a suggested retail price of $13.99 per 750-ml.

As an aperitif, Dubonnet can be enjoyed on its own or in cocktails. The profile is medium-bodied with dark fruit tanins and a balanced sweetness, the company says. 

The launch will be supported by House, along with an updated website launching at doyoudubonnet.com, trade advertising, Instagram and will join the 2019 Bartender of the Year program as a featured brand.

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