Airing between regular episodes of the VinePair Podcast, “Next Round” explores the ideas and innovations that are helping drinks businesses adapt in a time of unprecedented change. As the coronavirus crisis continues and new challenges arise, VP Pro is in your corner, supporting the drinks community for all the rounds to come. If you have a story or perspective to share, email us at podcast@vinepair.com.

In this “Next Round,” Haus co-founders Helena and Woody Hambrecht chat with VinePair CEO Adam Teeter about how their direct-to-consumer alcohol brand is reinventing aperitif culture for American drinkers. The husband-and-wife duo discuss their journey, from deciding to create an aperitif brand, to how prioritizing design has helped them reach their target wine and spirit consumers.

The Hambrechts created Haus as a low-calorie, low-alcohol spirit brand aiming to capture the need for a lighter, less boozy drinking experience — as evidenced by the popularity of the Aperol Spritz. While Haus aperitifs are technically vermouth, Helena explains that she and Woody saw a need to approach Haus’s branding in a different way. The pair chose to focus entirely on direct-to-consumer (DTC) sales, a growing trend within the drinks industry that operates outside the traditional three-tier system.

Woody, who is a third-generation winemaker based in Sonoma County, says he took inspiration from Old World classics to create Haus flavor profiles that are versatile and easy to sip. With his family winemaking experience and Helena’s background in tech, their brand is successfully hitting the mark. Hear more about how the couple plans to bring Haus from its online shop — including a monthly subscription option — to the wholesale market in the episode below.

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