Hello Kitty may have been designed to appeal to children, but the character herself is a legit adult. (Seriously. She celebrated her 43rd birthday this year, making her well past the legal drinking age.) Maybe that's why Sanrio developed its Hello Kitty wine collection ten years ago — even a cartoon character deserves to cut a little loose sometimes, right? Then again, they might be simply cashing in on millennial love for anything and everything retro. If so, kudos to them for coming up with such a brilliant business plan, because I was beyond stoked to hear that the company will be expanding its line of Hello Kitty-themed wines just in time for the 2017 holiday season. If they aren't already on your wish list, the influx of new products are guaranteed to change your mind.
According to Food & Wine, Sanrio, the Japanese company behind Hello Kitty, actually partnered with the Italian winery Torti to create the wines in 2007. It wasn't until last year, though, that they started heavily expanding to American markets — which honestly isn't as much of a travesty as it sounds, because you probably weren't old enough to drink back then anyway. But last fall, the wines hit the states in all their pink, sparkly glory, available at specialty grocery stores and a single restaurant in Santa Ana, California.
Now, one year and some change later, the line of wines have been updated with new packaging and two new products. The collection contains three old favorites: an updated Sweet Pink sparkling blend, a Sparkling Rosè, and a Pinot Nero Vinified in White. New to the party are a Pinot Noir and a special edition of the Sparkling Rosè (complete with adorable, limited edition packaging). All five are produced in the Lombardy region of Italy with Pinot Nero grapes. If you're looking to get your hands on the special Rosè, you'll want to act fast. At the moment are only 15,000 bottles available for sale.
Look at that precious packaging. If that doesn't hit you right in the nostalgic feels, I don't know what will. It practically begs to be given to your best friend for the holidays — something the wine makers are well aware of. Presumably, that's why the sparkling Sweet Pink comes in a limited edition bottle stamped with a gold heart and a special gift box.
If you'd prefer to wrap the gift yourself, there are plenty of other options on the Hello Kitty Wines website. You can buy the bottles in sets of two, three, six, and 12 for about $25 per bottle before shipping. Or if you feel like splurging, you can snag the collection of all five wines for $147.30 plus shipping. There's also a combo pack of three sparkling wines for $98.
If the online option doesn't appeal to you, the wines are available at stores in California, Delaware, Maryland, Nevada, Oregon, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Washington, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. To find out exactly where they're sold, you can find a list of distributors here. According to the Hello Kitty website, the line of vino will hit Arizona, Florida, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Texas, and the city of Chicago in 2018.
Needless to say, there are plenty of other Hello Kitty — who isn't a cat, by the way — products out there, living their best adorable lives. Last year, an entire cafe dedicated to the cartoon character opened in Irvine, California, and similarly-themed cafe trucks have been known to pop up in cities around the state. I don't know about you, but this year, all I want for Christmas is to snack on Hello Kitty gingerbread and go home to a glass of Hello Kitty Pinot Noir. Santa, if you're out there, please take note.