Syrah Outsells Chardonnay for First Time Ever Publishes First Half Wine
Region and Varietal Trends

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – 8/12/2008, the #1 online wine store, today announced the results of a
study of wine consumption trends for the first half of 2008, based on
consumer purchases on the website from January through June.
For the first time ever, revenue and unit volume of the red wine
varietal Syrah (also called Shiraz) outpaced Chardonnay, the number one
selling white wine. While Chardonnay volume increased 20% over the same
six month period the prior year, Syrah grew 47% during the period. Both
varietals at had an average retail selling price over $20,
placing them in the ultra-premium category.

"What you'd typically see in national wine consumption statistics
that rely largely on supermarket scanner data, place Syrah/Shiraz at 3%
and Chardonnay at 23%," said Michael Osborn, Founder and VP of
Merchandising. " consumers buy wines you'll find at fine
restaurants, and in that world Syrah purchasing ranks at 11% and is
growing in popularity."

Syrah purchases grew 47% during the period, to take over as the
second largest wine varietal after Cabernet Sauvignon. After Cabernet
and Syrah, the next best selling red wine varietals were Bordeaux
blends, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Rhone red blends, Malbec and Sangiovese.
After Chardonnay, the top consumption white wines were Sauvignon Blanc,
Pinot Gris/Grigio, Riesling, Rhone white blends and Viognier. Triple
digit growth categories were Tempranillo at 119% and Viognier at 140%.

California remains the largest wine growing region at 30% of sales,
but imports made up 63% of volume lead by Australia (19%), South America
(17%), France (8%), Italy (8%) and Spain (6%). The fastest-growing
regions in unit volume were South America at 88%, Bordeaux at 36% and
Spain and Australia, both at 25%.

For more details about the study or for custom queries of region and
varietal consumption data, contact

About is the nation's #1 online wine retailer, according to Internet
Retailer magazine's annual ranking of websites by revenue, offering
thousands of wines, wine gifts, gift baskets, and monthly wine clubs.'s mission is to be the ultimate resource for wine enthusiasts,
whether shopping for themselves or sending a gift, by offering a great
selection, low prices, convenient delivery and helpful information. is the world's most visited wine web site, according to
research conducted by comScore Media Metrix. For more information, visit
the company's website at
, its blog at
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