Friday, May 1, 2009

a rose by any other name

Its been about eight years ago since we first started talking about wine label names. I had spent hours considering what to call the wines and I had wandered numerous stores and wineries considering what worked best. One choice is to use a simple varietal name, like "Seyval Blanc" or "Niagara"; yet this seemed a little uninspired to me. Plus, if I changed what grapes I chose to use or could get, I'd have some unusable labels.

Fanciful names have caught on big in recent years, some using "impolite" words or slang terms to catch a shoppers interest. We do not sell our wines anywhere but at the winery, did not plan to distribute to stores or restaurants, so pure "shelf appeal" was not a consideration. But yet, I wanted a name our customers could relate to.

I began to make a list, Ii wanted 24 names to start with. I realized by using generic names I could use almost any label for almost any wine. So went the list, cool sounding names like "Zenith" (OK, not a a TV?); "Fraternity"; "Wistful" (descriptive?); and so on. Within a month I had my 24 names and we went on with making wine, re-habbing the carriage house, and developing marketing plans.

At some point, someone said, "How about "Converse" for a wine name?"; "Nah, that's a tennis shoe...", then my mind started thinking about other local names that did work, maybe, just maybe...;

So we decided to go forward, using local names of towns, points of interest, and Indiana rivers as our wine names. Its was one of the best ideas we had, yes, "we", because when I started asking friends and family, they are said "YES!" and made a few suggestions, some of which I actually used.

To use a label name, you have to get it approved by the federal government. One amusing point here is the government does not charge anything for wine label applications and approvals. How they missed that one, I have no idea. Some names are zapped because someone else is already using it, although there must be some latitude, possibly by location, since I have seen duplicate names before.

I am working up some new names for wines in years to come, if you'd like to make a suggestion, send it to us here at the winery by email or postal carrier, we don't pay anything but I'll slap a label on a white t-shirt and give it to you if we use your idea! So generous...

No comments:

Post a Comment