Drinks giant Diageo has bought Rosenblum Cellars for US$105 million.

Rosenblum is best known for Zinfandel, and its purchase would ‘enhance Diageo’s presence in the premium Zinfandel segment, one of the fastest growing varietals in the US,’ Ivan Menezes, Diageo North America president said.

Based in Alameda, California, Rosenblum Cellars was founded in 1978 by Kent and Kathy Rosenblum and is one of the leading producers of Zinfandel and Rhone varietals in the United States.

‘They are interested in maintaining the culture of the company, the growers and me,’ founder Kent Rosenblum told decanter.com.

‘They do not have a Zinfandel in their portfolio, neither do they have a Rhone.’

Rosenblum also said it was the right time to sell. ‘We’ve had profitability and our financial advisors said it would be the right thing to do now. I am going to spend more time in the cellar and vineyards and less time doing administration, which will allow me to focus on what I love to do.’

The transaction, which is subject to regulatory approval, is expected to complete at the end of February 2008.

Written by Panos Kakaviatos