Winter Task May Take Longer than Fermentation, Part 1

You make a barrel or two of wine and are asked to design the label. Little did I realize that the label is going to take longer to create than the wine took to ferment. The wine I made and bottled at home during 2009 had no labels. However, now that I am making more wine, I should probably label my bottles at home so I will know what is in them. I will also have to design a label for wine made at Vint Hill Craft Winery and Tin Lizzie Wineworks.

In this entry, I’ll discuss the labels for the wines made at home and Tin Lizzie. Those wines will not be sold. They are for personal use. I believe that they do not require the government portion of wine bottle labels required for wine that can be sold. Please correct me if I am wrong.

Label design is easier said than done. Once on the bottle, I don’t plan to take it off and put a newly designed label on. I need to get it right on the first try. Since I plan to give some of the wine as gifts, the label has to be meaningful. This past Christmas, I gave several bottles of the mead I bottled in 2009 as gifts. The mead was made from honey from my wife’s family homestead. I decide to call the mead, “A Taste of Home.” For decades we observed, photographed and drew pictures of a lone tree in the field at the Marcellus property. My son, Kevin, painted a picture of the tree and field and I used a photo of his painting as a part of the label. The label made a big impression on one family member who received some of the mead as a gift. Hopefully the mead also made an impression.

The design for the mead was easy from the standpoint that there was a story to tell. Now I have to design a label for some Cabernet Sauvignon that I have at home and at Tin Lizzie. Other than having the words “Cabernet Sauvignon 2009” I am not certain what else to add or what image to use. Of all the decisions for winemaking, the label seems to demand the most time and thought.

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