Saturday, March 01, 2008

Grab a fork, pop a cork!

You've got to give credit where & when it's due - and today the winner is....[drumroll...]

This wine series is created by someone else for Costplus, obviously, since they don't have their own winery operation, and custom labeled for the shelves. These shown are all California origin, but who knows, maybe they'll expand it to include foreign wines as well. I'm not sure yet who it is who makes it for them, but that is really beside the point...

Making wines marketed to the foodies who already run into the likes of Costplus, Whole Foods, etc., strikes me as really well done by linking the "suggestion" of pairing food & wine with the graphic of meat cuts on the label. And the tag-line they use - "Grab a fork and pop a cork..." - is an instant classic!
And with an ad price of just $7.99/btl, certainly not something that would break anyone's bank by trying it (this raises a few questions in my mind, as most serious "established" foodies tend to fall into the "wine snob" camp and might dismiss this wine based solely on it's bargain basement price...though it likely would draw the attention of "budding foodies", and those foodies with a more adventurous spirit and less pretension...
Although drawing in Ma & Pa Kettle, or whomever, into trying wine with meals is the actual objective, and on that point the marketing is very effective).

In fact, I can see a whole line around this, with a lamb graphic for Syrah, Pork for Gewurztraminer and some Pinots, etc., tailored to the tastes of the wine manager for the brand. Perhaps even to the point where the label offers suggestions for specific cuts of meats...
Classically, the wine suggestion would entail taking the method of preparation and any sauces into play as well as the meat source category, but the idea is intriguing!
In my mock-up below, perhaps the Cab in question has some oak and smoke along with a nice tannin level, and would pair well with some steak, or other thinner cuts of beef.
Of course, I'm still in the "drink whatever you want" camp, and routinely ignore classic food & wine advice (last night I had BLT's with a cheap Pinot Grigio...), but even so, I can see where this sort of marketing would be really effective, and perhaps dramatically reduce the public trepidation over committing to a particular wine for fear it doesn't pair with what they are planning to prepare.
What really needs to change is the perception that wine needs to be paired properly to be enjoyed at all... which belief is sadly prevalent in western popular culture.

Cheers to Costplus for attempting to make wine "fun" and "foodie-friendly"!
Even if that ends up only being "budding foodies"...



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