Brett happens

All wine, most of the time

Cellier, take two

with 3 comments

The SAQ’s Cellier magazine and associated releases are about to undergo a major overhaul. Here’s a passage from the Forum SAQ newsletter just sent to the monopoly’s suppliers and their local agents:

Cellier magazine will be transformed and published twice as often, that is, eight times a year. Two of the issues will keep the current format while the six others will inform readers of specialty wine arrivals. Each issue will feature two product releases scheduled for the two weeks following distribution of the issue. The magazine’s content and look will also be revised.

The six new-format issues will reportedly resemble the LCBO’s glossy Vintages circular, i.e. a slick promotional tool focused on the wines in the upcoming releases and little more. The new format is supposed to be rolled out after the last old-format Cellier – devoted, as usual for the spring issue, to Italian wines – is published in late February.

The stated goal is to expand the magazine’s appeal beyond the so-called Connoisseur customer segment and to boost traffic and sales through a combination of more frequent and visible releases, events like the recent Wine Spectator Top 100 promo and more emphatic merchandising of the Cellier section in outlets and of products within the section.

Written by carswell

December 21, 2012 at 00:39

Posted in News

Tagged with ,

3 Responses

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  1. I understand the point of view from the SAQ, but I cannot say that I am thrilled. Cellier was, if we forget about the last two issues which were sub-par, a superb wine publication and I was looking for its arrival with enthousiasm.

    It’s a loss for all the people who were initially aimed by the magazine, as they will most likely find its new incarnation a bit underwhelming.

    That being said, we’ll see how it goes and I will give the new Cellier a chance. But I’m not holding my breath…

    Julien Marchand

    December 21, 2012 at 21:41

    • It’s also a loss for the contributors, Julien. Wine writers, especially Quebec wine writers, don’t have many outlets and now they’ll have one — or maybe one-half — less.

      We’ll have to wait and see the results but I suspect it’s going to be little more than a promotional vehicle for a repackaged version of the current “En primeur,” “Nouvel arrivage” and “Cellier” releases. Marketing rules, I guess.


      December 30, 2012 at 11:16

  2. […] mark the passing of Cellier as we know it, the tasting included only bottles from the Spring 2013 issue of the […]

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