I think Martini’s Asti must be one of my first ever wine related memories. Not drinking, mind you, but I remember my parents buying a few bottles in the 1980s back when as a brand and as a wine it was flying high. As much as sentiment might have changed over the past few years as wine drinkers moved on to the next thing, brand manager Marco Mazzini is gearing this iconic Italian brand up for a revival.
I was sat having lunch with him earlier today, and it felt more like an ideas session than a “brand manager talking to blogger” thing. A year and a half ago Marco moved over to London to be stationed at Bacardi’s (owner of Martini) European brand HQ. His mission is to get the spirits focused company to sit up and take note of a sleeping jewel in the portfolio’s crown. But to do it, he needs to challenge perceptions.
Martini Asti is the sweet, low alcohol, sparkling wine that has been with Martini since the beginnings in the 1860s and is the main driver behind Martini being the number seller of sparkling wines round the world by a country mile! But the 1980s crowd enjoying low alcohol, sweet bubbles with their steak and chips (yes that used to happen a lot) is just not going to cut it, is it?
Marco realizes he’s got two things at his disposal. First up, this is a well made wine. It tastes exactly how it’s meant to, and over ice in the summer, or with cakes in the winter, it’s a great drop. He’s also got the iconic brand of Martini behind it. We all love an Italian revival, from Aperol to the Fiat 500. The brand of Martini is ripe for it.
The Great British Bake Off generation needs a sponge cake wine, and Marco’s got just the job!