Going into a wine store can be a lot of fun if you are a wine drinker. You know what you like yet you want to find something different. There are cabernets, merlots, pinots, zinfandels, and many more. Should I peruse the reds or whites? Should I check out the California wines or maybe try those from South Africa. There are a lot of choices to be made and even better if you get to taste some while you shop. While in principle, shopping and drinking are probably not the best combination for the customer; it’s a homerun for the seller. So, if you get to sample and shop, just realize that you are going to drop some cash.
While I have many favorites, I have to admit that I am a sucker for the wine label. Yes, you heard me… THE LABEL. The wine has to be good of course but the wine label must draw you in. I like to let the label choose me.I recently stumbled upon a bottle of wine called Freakshow (see label below). The label is vibrant, circus performers showcasing a strong man. It grabs your attention just like the fat lady with a beard. Of course, I bought it. I had to. Who can let a bottle called Freakshow slip through their fingers??? Not I. It was delicious. (By the way, it is a cabernet sauvignon that costs between $14-20.)
What my eye is drawn to may not be what your eye is drawn to. Sometimes it is the ethereal bottle that quietly calls out to you: The beautiful tree blowing in the wind or the ducks flying across the sky. (“Hey, I like ducks! I’m going to try this one.”) Maybe it’s the animals on a label, that tug on your heartstrings or the words on a label that just makes you laugh out loud. Here are some labels of actual wines that give me a smile: Help Is Here, Fat Bastard, Rough Day, Gnarly Head, Oops, You’re Turning into Your Mother, Bitch, and MooBuzz. Chances are that if you laugh when you buy the wine, you will laugh after. See picture below;
Titles can make all the difference too. A bottle called Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Beaujolais Cuvée Traditionnelle Vieilles Vignes 2013, is going to have to work a little harder than something like, Innocent Bystander Pinot Noir 2013. Check it out below:
I would definitely buy this.
Numbers on labels are also catchy. I have seen bottles with the individual numbers 2, 3, and 5. If you read the label, you will see that the number corresponds to how many grape varieties are in the wine. With numerical wine bottle labels, you might have to investigate each one to find out what they mean. Project 49, for example, is the numerical address of the vineyard. The bottles labeled 40, 39, and 41 are based on the longitudes of Italy and it’s famous wine regions. Sometimes you have to take a little risk to reap the rewards.
Apparently, I am not the only one who buys wine this way. I am just one of the few to admit it. There are numerous wine label design awards that bestow honors to the graphic designers who produce these gems. No such awards would exist if people didn’t care. The next time you peruse the aisle of the grocery store or wine store, let the label choose you. You might be pleasantly surprised.