Are you a sucker for mini sample snacks in big-box stores or free spritzes of perfume at the cosmetics counter? If the answer is a resounding yes, these wine-flavored sample strips are right up your alley.
Launched in April by Napa Valley’s Beringer Vineyards, the strips allow customers to experience the flavor of a bottle of wine before purchasing. The surprising news? They’re non-alcoholic, which means they conform to all states’ individual sampling laws and can be consumed at any time of day.
The plastic strips are individually wrapped and coated with flavoring that mimics Beringer’s three most popular wines: Chardonnay, White Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon. Mounted inside a “Taste Station” display attached to a shelf of the wines themselves, these self-service sample strips can currently be found at 20 Kroger stores around the country, and Beringer plans to expand the experiment nationwide with multiple retailers soon.
Inspired by the fact that 94 percent of women say that sampling is more effective than advertising, Beringer’s flavor strips are the latest innovation in a competitive industry that gives shoppers a new way to sample wine before committing to an entire bottle.