Wine Labels :: A Favorite Wine School Topic

Do you understand what wine labels tell you? Do you prefer easy going, light-hearted labels (critters or cleaver names), lots of color or more "serious" labels. Don't ask me what a serious label is, but I know one when I see one.

Different labels appeal to different consumers. In fact, the wine label is (almost) completely responsible for whether or not a wine has market appeal. This is best illustrated by comparing the total dollars spent in each sector of the adult beverage industry on adverting.

Of the total dollars spent on advertising (in all forms), the wine industry accounts for 5.4% of the total; spirits are 29.4% and beer 65.2%. Keep in mind that wine sales exceed beer sales in the US. The fact that so little is spent on advertising means that the primary way that most wineries get there message across is with their label.

So, lets see what you know about reading a wine label. The picture with this article is a German wine label. Can you tell us: (a) estate, (b) region, (c) appellation and anything special about this appellation, (d) grape, (e) predikat and style, (f) bottle size, (g) bottling statement, (h) EU bottle statement, (i) analysis tracking statement, and an estimate of sugar content. All of it is on the label. Finally, what statement on the label would be different beginning in October 2007.

I guess I would call this a "serious" label.

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