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Recently, we visited our local wine store, here in Santa Barbara to select an Argentinian Malbec from the Mendoza region. A bottle of Red Schooner (pictured above) captured our attention solely because of its stunning old world label. Upon closer inspection we saw the red banner in the sky containing the words “Wagner Family” from Napa Valley.  We were so impressed by how well the label told the brand story that we chose Wagner Family of Wine as The Language of Luxury 2017 Brand of the Year. Here is why:

Credibility & Heritage:

We already know and love Caymus, owned by the Wagner Family of Wine in Napa Valley. Caymus is the only winery in the world to have received the prestigious “Wine of the Year” award twice by Wine Spectator for its legendary Caymus Special Selection Cabernet Sauvignon.

As a four-generation family-owned wine business, the Wagners have successfully created several other sub-brands such as Conundrum, the popular fruit-forward blend of white wines. The choice of the brand name, Red Schooner and the vintage graphics amplified this brand dimension of “heritage”.

Transparent Use of Technology

Red Schooner is made from grapes grown in the Andes Mountains, but shipped chilled to Napa Valley and produced with the same techniques as their Caymus Cabernet.  Delicately handled and kept in cold stasis the grapes arrive in California in pristine condition.  The use of this technology is completely transparent to the consumer.

Turning Labeling Constraints Into a Brand Story

Most of the world best Malbecs are produced in Argentina. But, Red Schooner is not a Malbec produced in Argentina. Nor, is it a Napa Malbec because it is produced with grapes from Argentina. Falling outside standard labeling rules, it does not include a vintage date but is known by the voyage from which it was produced (Voyage 3 is the 2012 vintage). Hence, these labeling constraints were turned into the core of the brand story. Brilliant!!!

Winemaker’s Notes: A Malbec with a California twist. Floral, Chocolate and creamy rich like the Caymus Cabs! We loved it!

What are the branding lessons you can apply here in your luxury real estate marketing practice?