Bonterra: Good earth, great wine

Bonterra produces award-winning wines made from organically grown grapes in Mendocino County, CA. The vineyard has been an industry leader in organic practices for over twenty years. A new brand expression was created to tell the story of the ranch and help Bonterra receive the credit it has earned.

Revealing the essence

Bonterra’s brand essence, “organic grapes make better wine” had yet to be leveraged, and with new organic brands entering the market, it became even more important for the brand to tell its story. Existing identity and package labeling were not slated for change, but Bonterra needed to talk about itself in a differentiating way. We explored three ways to tell the story based on brand characteristics. Our solution focused on the theme of relationships: Soil, sun and vine, farmer and winemaker, people, nature and enjoyment of life. Through the filter of these relationships, people are invited to experience the Bonterra brand in new ways, creating their own definitions of what “better” means.

Creating visual language

Using the existing identity and label, we set out to create a visual language that could supplement and surround the current brand expression with an eye toward a future evolution.

Juxtapositions of imagery, iconography and language create a palette of ingredients that express Bonterra in a way that invites consumers to participate on an emotional level and consider what is important to them.

Telling the organic story

Because “organic” is a rapidly growing category, using the word as a brand descriptor has become generic, communicating a functional benefit without really communicating a differentiated brand value.

Bonterra has been a certified industry leader in organic farming for over 20 years. It was important to communicate its leadership in organic farming, and that this expertise has resulted in a premium quality product. By revealing a real place committed to a real process and philosophy, the Bonterra Story video offers an authentic point of view without having to rely on clichés.

A real place

Capturing life on the ranch was essential to creating an accurate portrayal of the vineyard. Because the ranch is real, representing it honestly seemed the best way to tell the story. Working with photographer Andy Anderson, we created a library of imagery that depicts the place, expresses the quality of the wine and the dedication of the people who cultivate the land.

Bringing the ranch to life

The Bonterra Roadshow was designed to transport wine distributors and consumers to the Bonterra Ranch. Videos, banners, displays and printed materials were created to bring the experience to life at trade events and to educate audiences on Bonterra’s approach to organic farming and winemaking.

Those who experience our presentation walk away more emotionally connected to Bonterra, which is exactly what we set out to do: create brand ambassadors who are able to articulate the powerful stories of Bonterra and our organic and biodynamic farming practices.

– Donald Freytag, Foundation Wines, Brown-Forman