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10.2009

Massachusetts Beverage Business

archivedOnWineReport

The TIMES, THEY are a CHANGIN’

In an effort to drum up some much needed revenue, The New York Times is jumping into the wine business. The New York Times Wine Club will offer a selection of wines at two price levels, $9O for the six-bottle Times Sampler (4 red, 2 white) or $18O for the six-bottle Times Reserve (4 red, 2 white). There are also wines in the Club’s Wine Shop that do cost significantly more, which can be ordered in either six- or twelve-bottle shipments. Members can opt to have wine delivered every one, two or three months. The wine club will be operated by the Global Wine Company, which mainly selects the wines from small, family-run vineyards. Some of the wines listed on the website are Martinborough Vineyard “Russian Jack” Pinot Noir, Pahlmeyer Jayson Chardonnay and Leeuwin Estate Art Series Shiraz, among others.

Although the venture is being run independently of the paper’s food and wine editorial sections, excerpts from wine-related Times stories run on the side of the club’s website, nytwineclub.com. Members receive booklets of recipes from the paper’s archives that can be paired with each shipment of wine.  Although the club is an unusual brand extension for the Times, it is one of several such ventures the company is considering. As ad revenue has declined, the company has looked to unload units. In July, it announced the sale of its classical-music radio station, WQXR, and it is seeking a buyer for properties including The Boston Globe.

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