Wine Culture Magazine

Photo courtesy of Monte Creek Winery

It’s one thing to have a kitschy label when you’re just starting out and your winery’s brand is cheap and cheerful and fun. But when your wine starts winning major awards and you want to attract the attention of serious sommeliers and consumers, that piece of paper needs to tell a whole different story.

And so Monte Creek Winery—formerly Monte Creek Ranch—in Kamloops has just been through a rebranding that has exchanged the old label, with its image of train robber Bill Miner, for a new one that elegantly evokes the terroir of the Thompson Valley.

The winery worked with designer Adrienne Van Haeren of Signify Design, who created a new logo and design that better reflect the team’s commitment to quality, innovation and sustainable practices. For instance, the centre of the new logo illustrates an M, symbolic of both Monte Creek and the rows of the vineyard, while the monogram resembles a thumb print, to reflect the winery’s intentional handcrafted process.

To complete the rebrand, Monte Creek’s wines are now divided into three series: Ancient Waters, Living Land and entry-level Pioneer, where you will find the popular Hands Up red and white. Meanwhile, the first release in the Ancient Waters series, the 2019 Ancient Waters Chardonnay, has already scooped several major awards, including Double Gold at the 2021 All Canadian Wine Championships.

Monte Creek is not the only winery to make over its label in the last couple of years. Hillside Estate Winery on the Naramata Bench recently replaced its decade-old labels. They were not only tired looking, but also had the disadvantage of not distinguishing clearly between entry-level and premium wines like the flagship Mosaic. The new labels, created by a California designer, feature a stylized silhouette of the winery, with different colours for different tiers of wine.

And West Kelowna’s Mt. Boucherie Estate has replaced the fancy, swirly, somewhat outdated serif font with a clean, crisp modern san-serif, and created clever, stylized labels to reflect its different tiers: the cheeky Modest Wines, elegantly simple White Label and intriguingly complex Original Vines.

Next is likely to be Road 13, which is now part of Anthony von Mandl’s Iconic Wineries of British Columbia. While its new branding embraces the rugged western heritage of the property, we can expect it to be as sleek, sophisticated and well-thought-out as the rest of the wineries in the group.

Wine can—and should!—be enjoyable and fun. But sometimes, it needs to get serious, too.

Three to try

Monte Creek Living Land Series Riesling 2021
(British Columbia VQA, $22)
Lime, pear, mineral, racy acidity, vibrant.

Hillside Winery Unoaked Pinot Gris 2021
(Naramata Bench, $24)
Juicy stone fruit, peach, nectarine, green apple.

Mt. Boucherie Modest Wines La Graves Robber Sauvignon Blanc/Sémillon 2021
(Okanagan Valley, $28)
Herbaceous, citrus, honey, crisp, elegant.

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