Opici Wines is further expanding its portfolio by entering the beer category with the introduction of Italian craft brewery, Brùton, under its Market Street Spirits division.
After years of researching techniques from around the world and experimentation through home brewing, Iacopo Lenci founded Brùton – derived from the historical term for beer on the island of Crete – in 2006 in his hometown of Lucca, with a portfolio of unfiltered, bottle-fermented, craft brews.
In 2009, Iacopo collaborated with a second brewmaster, Andrea Riccio, to further develop the Brùton brand. With opposing style preferences – Iacopo opts for Belgian inspired brews and Andrea prefers German styles – the two complement one another nicely by finding a middle ground to create a range that appeals to a broader audience.
“Italy’s lack of beer culture gives us a tremendous amount of flexibility. We are free to reinterpret classical styles in an Italian way. We aim to capture the silky, balanced, and elegant side of brewing,” says Lenci.
Soon after, they began exporting Brùton to the United States, through small importers in a select few markets with annual average sales of 25,000, 750 ml bottles. In partnering with Market Street Spirits, Brùton hopes to expand its availability nationwide.
According to Lenci, “Brùton is ‘wine-concept’ beer and Opici Wines is an importer of fine Italian wines. When they launched the Market Streets Spirits division, it was the perfect time to join forces. It’s a natural fit.”
A microbrewery in all senses, the brewery uses a 10-hectoliter fermenter. The beers are top-fermented using ale yeast, then bottled unfiltered and unpasteurized using the traditional German process known as lagering – storing the beer at near freezing temperatures for a minimum of one month. A secondary fermentation takes place in bottle, a traditionally Belgian technique, rendering a lively beer that will gain further complexity over time. Malted barley, hops, yeast and spices are sourced directly from the growers located in the best geographical locations for their production, typically Germany and Belgium.
The brewery also boasts a pub and restaurant which offers beer and food pairings.
A selection of Brùton’s portfolio will be sold through Opici Wines’ spirits division, Market Street Spirits, including: Lilith, StoneR, Bianca, and Brùton. It will be rolled out nationally over the coming months. All beers are offered in 330 ml bottles for a suggested retail price of $10 and 750 ml bottles for a suggested retail price of $20.
About Market Street Spirits
Market Street Spirits is a division of Opici Wines, an importer and producer with a portfolio of over 50 brands from the United States, Italy, Spain, France, Chile, Argentina, and Hungary. The portfolio is represented nationally through distributor partners. Opici Wines was recently awarded Importer of the Year by the Wine Enthusiast. From its inception in 1913, the company has remained family-owned and -operated. To learn more about Opici Wines, visit www.opiciwines.com.