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Design General

The Art and Design of Contemporary Wine Labels

by (author) Tanya Scholes

foreword by Michael Mondavi

Santa Monica Press
Initial publish date
Oct 2010
General, Wine & Spirits
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2010
    List Price

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Featuring outstanding wine-label designs from more than 250 international vintners, this illustrated survey highlights leading designers who have elevated the design of wine labels to an art form. Tracing the history of wine-label design from its early use as a simple utilitarian way of cellaring wine to its contemporary role as the visual voice of the winemaker, this guide features full-color wine labels that have been praised for their bold graphics, unique illustrations, beautiful typography, captivating photography, and powerful words. Each entry includes a profile of the wine, the name and contact information of the producer, the country of origin, and details on the design firms and artists responsible for the labels’ creation. Interviews with the winemakers and designers reveal fascinating stories about the designs, such as the curious images hidden in the steam of an iron on the Dirty Laundry wine label; how the pairing of a donkey and a goat represent a shared philosophy and approach to the craft for a husband and wife winemaking duo; and the true meaning behind Bonny Doon’s illustrative Il Fiasco label. Showcasing originality and creativity, these labels offer intrigue and entertainment, adding another layer of conversation to the experience of drinking a fine bottle of wine.

About the authors

Contributor Notes

Tanya Scholes is a floral designer who worked in the advertising and design industry for more than 10 years. She lives in Toronto, Ontario. Michael Mondavi cofounded the Robert Mondavi Winery with his father in 1966 and founded the Folio Wine Company in 2004. He received the World of Food and Wine Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995 and the Who's Who in Food and Wine Award from the James Beard Foundation in 1997. He lives in Napa, California.

Editorial Reviews

"Brings the strength and value a label can add to a bottle of wine to life, and its ability to convey the history, future, character, and philosophy deep behind the paper."  “Martin Malivoire, proprietor, Malivoire Wine Company

"The world of wine is an incredible melting pot of mother nature, people, history, geography, science, art, and design . . . and Tanya Scholes captures it in all its glory. An absolute must."  “Matt Skinner, sommelier consultant, educator, and author, Thirsty Work, Heard It through the Grapevine, and The Juice: 100 Wines You Should Be Drinking

"There is an artistry to winemaking that extends to its packaging. The wine labels showcased in Tanya Scholes's book are the essence of a wine Language that people can relate to and actually understand."  “Charles Smith, owner and winemaker, K Vintners and Charles Smith Wines

"You can't judge a wine by its label, but you can deepen your sensory pleasure by looking more closely at it. This is just the book to help you do that. Beautifully illustrated with surprising insights."  “Natalie MacLean, author, Red, White and Drunk All Over and publisher,

"Tanya Scholes has put together the most comprehensive book on the Subject of wine label art that I have ever seen. It will simultaneously stimulate your mind and taste buds."  “Manfred Krankl, proprietor and winemaker, Sine Qua Non

"Confronted by thousands of choices, a simple grocery errand becomes an Odyssean quest. Let author Tanya Scholes shed a little light on the arcane alchemy of wine label design."  “Jeffrey Caldewey, founder, Icon Design Group, coauthor, Icon: Art of the Wine Label

"With verve, care, and humor, Tanya Scholes adeptly teases out the magic ghost that exists within a bottle of wine, and helps us understand how that spirit is manifested on the front in all its glory."  “ Kathryn Borel Jr., author, Corked

"Tanya Scholes has gathered together the most visually compelling labels and provided a great back-story to the semiotic treasure trove that is the universe of wine labels."  Randall Grahm, founder and winemaker, Bonny Doon Vineyard, and author, Been Doon So Long: A Randall Grahm Vinthology