Light. Bright. Precise.
Blüfeld Riesling: The Nü Blü
Twelve months following launch, wine enthusiasts consumed 350,000 cases—making Blüfeld America’s #1 selling Riesling brand.
Opportunity and challenge
Constellation Wines, the largest wine producer in the world, enthusiastically seized the opportunity to acquire a large swath of Germany’s most prized Mosel River wine region, famous in Europe for its lush and full-bodied Rieslings. Most Americans, unfortunately, knew not of Mosel, nor did they gravitate toward Rieslings with the same vengeance as the Merlots, Sauvignons and Chardonnays of the world. More challenging still, how to compete with top Riesling brands Relax, Schmitt Söhne, and Gallo’s Polka Dot. And while these top three dominated the US market, none of these brands had made serious breakthroughs in converting wine drinkers into Riesling aficionados.
How to endear the varietal, the appellation, and new Riesling brand to US wine enthusiasts and connoisseurs alike? To differentiate from top competitors, and 4,000+ wine labels on US shelves? To overcome the Riesling stereotype of being very sweet—when in fact, the palate can range from sweet, to medium sweet, to dry, to even very dry? To make Blüfeld Riesling into America’s new sweetheart?
Constellation Wines, the largest wine producer in the world, commissioned us to help tell a story that would drive everything from naming, voice, taglines, packaging to experience.
Wine enthusiasts consumed 350,000 cases in the first year, making Blüfeld the world’s #1 selling riesling brand in its class, and outselling all competitors.
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The right story endears
Primed in a solid appellation, romantic terroir, modern sensibility and palate, we got to work on creating an answer to everything this medium-sweet Riesling brand was not—and everything the competitors were not. Relax Riesling’s brand was clean but sterile, and devoid of any character. Gallo’s Polka Dot Riesling was sweet and while modern, the brand name evoked Eastern Europe. With the little old German lederhosen-clad man as its brand identity, Schmidt-Söhne Riesling was more reminiscent of a smoke filled beer hall. The name, the look, the design, the story needed to avoid feeling overly sweet, too old-world, too sterile, too German, too floral. Rather, we’d communicate a richness, a medium sweetness, a modernity, with an assuring nod to Mosel RIver Germany origins.
Blüfeld’s distinctive tall, cobalt blue bottle evokes the blue slate of the Mosel terroir and adds to the wine’s appeal on the shelf. The decorative pattern on the bottle calls to mind the Mosel’s blue hue vineyards. A custom hand-drawn logotype identity is modern and clean, but with an unmistakable German calligraphic style, just enough to reassure. A burst of modernist floral motif characterizes the Mosel Riesling fragrance, and portends a refreshing respite.
Russell Volckmann worked with Jenn McIntyre and Michael Wou to develop story, naming, voice, taglines, identity design, packaging design, and brand experience.
Out of the Blü
Constellation owned the color blue and everything else it represented in the RIesling space. And they executed by living the brand’s naming, story and design in distributor relations, gala launch events with the Blue Man Group, point-of-purchase displays, silkscreen label, matching cork, complementing capsule, social and advertising—turning Blüfeld into not only America’s #1 Riesling brand, but also one of Constellation’s biggest success stories in its long history.
Blüfeld Riesling: Try Something Nü