MIAMI, May 17, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida, Inc. (SWS-Florida)—a division of Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc. (Southern), today announced the formation of a new Artisanal Fine Wine & Spirits division.
Laura DePasquale, a Master Sommelier (MS), has been named as the General Manager of the division. DePasquale joined Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida in 2015 as Director of Fine Wine Strategy and was tasked with launching the Artisanal concept and division in the market in 2016. DePasquale will report to Gene Sullivan, Executive Vice President, General Manager of the SWS-Florida division.
"I am confident Laura will be a strong leader of this innovative new division and will build and elevate its presence across the State of Florida for our suppliers and customers alike," said Sullivan. "The Artisanal division is a new and exciting concept in wholesale for Southern in the market. Like Southern's Artisanal Group in California, we will be dedicated to small wineries, artisanal spirits, as well as new trends and brand development—combining a smaller, lighter approach to the market with educational events and consultative selling."
Prior to joining Southern, DePasquale was Senior Vice President and General Manager at The Country Vintner specifically focusing on the Stacole Fine Wines business. Before that, she was Vice President of Fine Wine Development at Palm Bay International for more than a decade. DePasquale achieved the Master Sommelier Diploma in 2004 and has been an active educator, examiner and speaker for the Court of Master Sommeliers-Americas.
"This is a tremendous honor and opportunity to build and expand Southern's new Artisanal division in Florida. I look forward to building a great team at Southern that will support our Fine Wine and spirits partners and customers across Florida," said DePasquale.
The Artisanal division will operate in the new Southern Wine & Spirits of Wynwood space in Miami's Wynwood Art District. The 17,000-square-foot building will include state-of-the-art classroom facilities, fine wine storage, as well as additional spaces for indoor and outdoor wine tastings and special events for visiting winemakers and master distillers. It will also house the offices of Lee Schrager, Vice President of Corporate Communications, and his national special events and hospitality teams—including the South Beach Wine & Food Festival® team.
About Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc.
Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc. is the nation's largest wine and spirits distributor and broker with operations in 38 markets. The multi-state distributor currently operates in: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Kentucky, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wyoming. On a national basis, Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc. employs more than 14,500 team members. Southern urges all retail customers and adult consumers to market, sell, serve and enjoy its products responsibly.
For more information about Southern and its responsible consumption program, see: http://www.southernwine.com.
To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/southern-wine--spirits-of-florida-announces-new-artisanal-fine-wine--spirits-division-300270087.html
SOURCE Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida, Inc.