$8 ‘Josh’ wine takes internet by storm, maker having ‘good laugh’ at all the memes

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    Memes of wine bottles from a company created nearly 20 years ago are popping up all over social media, and have the attention of its makers. 

    “Josh,” short for Josh Cellars, can be found at many stores where wine is sold. In some places, it can be found for as low as $8 a bottle. Yet some have taken to it like a fine wine, and one self-proclaimed “Professional Snack & Wine Tester” may be the cause.

    “I’m not gonna keep telling y’all to grow up and leave that Stella & Barefoot alone,” the man tweeted on X, formerly known as Twitter, on Jan. 6 with a large bottle of Josh merlot. The post has thousands of shares and likes, along with hundreds of comments in response. 

    “We’re happily surprised with the online attention and have enjoyed following along with the memes that have popped up over the last week,” Dan Kleinman, Josh Cellars’ chief brand officer, said. “They’ve been creative, given us a good laugh, and we’ve had fun responding and engaging in the conversation.” 

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    Josh Cellars was created in 2007 by Joseph Carr as a tribute to his dad named Josh, as a way of “honoring all that his father had done for him,” the company’s website states. Kleinman believes people connect with Carr’s story.

    “We know people prefer to buy brands with values that align with their own, and family, gratitude and giving back is core to the story and ethos of Josh Cellars,” Kleinman said in an email to FOX Business.

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    Yet some following along on social media say they are confused, either because they have known about the brand for years or had never heard of it.

    “For the first time I think ever, I’ve missed out on a full meme cycle cuz who is Josh and why do we like his wine so much?” one X user wrote.

    Kleinman says calling wine a human name is “universally humorous” and “almost everyone in the U.S. knows someone named Josh.” He says Josh has been “the No. 1 premium wine brand in the country for the past few years.” 

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    Kleinman says the company has enjoyed conversing with both loyal and new customers as a result of its recent virality. 

    “What we are seeing beyond the heightened levels of conversation around the brand is that people are also posting images, reels and videos of themselves buying the brand for the first time. This is a great outcome for us as we believe in the quality of our wines,” he said. 

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