Wed 3 Aug 2011
Vine Connections of Sausalito, Ca., well-known importer of wines from Argentina, just announced that the name of one of its labels, Budini, will be changed to Bodini. Bodini, which produced its first vintage in 2002 (as Budini), produces highly-regarded wines made from chardonnay and malbec grapes. The change comes because of a threatened lawsuit from Budweiser, the ubiquitous beer manufacturer, whose cadre of attorneys apparently interpreted Budini as an Italian rip-off meaning “little Bud” or “Buddy.”
Budweiser, launched in 1876, is made by Anheuser-Busch (now known as Anheuser-Busch InBev), founded by German immigrant Adolphus Busch and his father-in-law. The company had revenue of $16.7 billion in 2007 and accounts for a 48.9 percent market share of the American beer business, producing some 11 billion cans and bottles annually. In 2008, after hostile approaches, the Brazilian-Belgian beverage giant InBev acquired Anheuser-Busch for $52 billion, creating the world’s largest brewer.
Bodini makes about 20,800 cases of wine each year. Current releases sell for about $13 a bottle.
In a related development, Universal Studios, owner of the rights to the ever-popular slap-stick Abbott and Costello films, announced that the first name of famed comedian Bud Abbott was being changed to “Steve.”