The International Review of Wine Packaging and Aesthetics, Vol. 6

Posted by Rob Walker on December 15, 2006
Posted Under: Reviews,The Designed Life,Wine Packaging

The Show
Cabernet Sauvignon. 2005. ($13 in Savannah)

[Note: This is the sixth installment in a regular Murketing feature. For previous installments and an explanation, go here.]

E was shopping at a big ol’ wine store, and when she spotted this bottle she thought: “Wow, that reminds me of Hatch Show Prints.” (Here’s the deal on Nashville-based Hatch, if you’re not up on it.) She took a closer look and found that, according to the back matter, the wine was actually “Inspired by the bold letterpress show posters that Hatch Show Print has produced since 1879.”

Well … what does that mean? That these people weren’t really thinking about making wine until they encountered Hatch Show Prints? And then said: “You know what this makes me want to do – make some wine!” It is, E reflects, “about as stupid a reason to make wine as any I’ve heard.” She wonders what, say, some 10th-generation French winemaker would think of a wine inspired by posters.

And yet, she adds, “I was drawn to it. Because I like Hatch Show Prints.”

R. was, of course, thrilled that she bought the bottle, because there couldn’t be a more on-point item for the International Review of Wine Packaging and Aesthetics. Clearly, we’re not the only ones who figure the way a bottle looks can be more significant to a purchase decision than what’s in it. In this case, the producers are in effect admitting that they set out to market an aesthetic, and the product was pretty much an afterthought.

And let’s face it: It’s a great-looking design! R. & E agree, in fact, it’s probably the best design of any we’ve reviewed. Aside from the always-pleasing Hatch look, whoever actually executed the bottle did a nice job achieving satisfying unity between the front and back labels, which manage to have a relationship without one simply being derivative of the other. Nice.

Regarding the actual wine: A country-western flavor perhaps? No. Unmemorable in every possible way.

Further diversion may be found at MKTG Tumblr, and the Consumed Facebook page.

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