Lets face it, picking out a wine can be a daunting task. Unless you are a seasoned wine connoisseur, chances are you stand in front of incredibly overcrowded shelves of wine at your local supermarket or wine store in a bewildered state. Maybe you have a go-to favorite or a recommendation from a friend, or maybe you seek help from a knowledgeable salesperson – or do you simply snatch the bottle with the best looking label design?
All of you oenophiles out there may cringe at the thought, but most are guilty of it. I have, on more than one occasion, chosen a bottle that caught my eye. In fact, the 2015 Gallo wine consumer trend survey reports that millennials are four times more likely to purchase a wine based on the wine label.
Packaging is one of the most important aspects for marketing wine and for grabbing the customers attention. When it comes to wine, a well crafted label should make an instant impression and also say something about the character of the contents within. Among a sea of wine bottles, a label design that appeals to a consumer sub-consciously will most likely always out compete those that require contemplation. Whether we consciously know it or not, wine labels communicate feeling.
A thoughtfully crafted label can also make a wine look more expensive than it actually is (score!). I guarantee many of you have been late for a dinner party and have run to the wine aisle looking to quickly grab the bottle that looked the best or most expensive at desired price point. Generally speaking, an uncluttered, minimal label on a light or cream background will tend to convey a wine that is expensive. However, a wine label with vibrant, humorous or kitschy artwork may not impart the same feeling of quality.
Now, we have all heard the phrase “Don’t judge a book by its cover,” but should wine be any different? It’s very easy to get caught up on how things appear externally, but when it comes to wine its what’s on the inside that really does matter. If you do choose strictly by label, not matter the reason, you will inevitably select some wines that you don’t quite love. To help avoid this, take an extra step and check out the bottle in detail. Most bottles offer a great deal of info about the brand and/or tasting notes somewhere on the bottle.
So, should we really base a wine choice off of a label?
I say ‘wine’ not as long as you know the risks you take! If you need some assistance you could use a helpful app like Vivino or Delectable, where you can take a photo of a wine label and instantly get ratings and descriptions. Cheers!