Canandaigua Industries became Canandaigua Wine in 1972 just before they went public. In 2000 they became Constellation. In the interim as Canandaigua Wine they made the following purchases:
1974 Biseglia Bros. Winery in Madera, California
1979 J. Roget sparkling brand
1987 Monarch Wines of Atlanta which included Manischewitz and Widmer's Wine Cellars of New York
1988 Marcus James of Brazil
1990 Jacques Bonet sparkling wines and Italian Swiss Colony dessert wines
1991 Guild Winery and Distillery of California including the brands Cribari, Dunnewood, and Cook's sparkling wine
1993 Vintners International including Taylor California Cellars, Paul Masson, Barton Distilled Spirits and assorted popular imported beer brands
1994 Mission Bell (Heublein) brands Almaden and Inglenook and a grape juice concentrate maker
1998 Arbor Mist (wine with fruit)
1999 Simi, Franciscan, Estancia, and Mt. Veeder of California and Veramonte of Chile
In 1999 Marvin Sands, the originator of the company in 1945, died at the age of 75. Clearly he succeeded in creating the national brand dominance he sought in the industry. Canandaigua began as a fruit wine company and continued as such along with dominance in the jug wine category at a time when most American wine drinkers were drinking those wines. The expansion into spirits and beer could be seen as investment diversification. Perhaps a little behind the curve with fine wine acquisitions, Constellation was now on the verge of exploding onto that scene.
Join us Friday when we taste one of Constellation Brand's wine offerings.