As I type this we are awaiting the final label design of our pumpkin wine, which we release in just two short weeks at the Boise Farmer’s Market (and is already nearly sold out just from pre-orders). As I drove to the studio this morning, the hubby and I chatted on the phone over which design we liked best (our graphics designer presented us with two slightly different versions) and it turns out Von liked one while I preferred the other. So how do we decide? We take it to the masses.
Well, in this case he took it to his co-workers for their opinions and by the end of the day we’ll have a decision and our graphics guy will run with it. So this may be a moot point but I thought it’d be fun to see which design YOU all like best and you’ll see which one we chose very soon. Here are the two rough drafts (a few other small details will be added but this is pretty much the gist). Which do you like best and why?
Keep in mind this wine won’t be going on store shelves simply because it’s in very limited production – we only self-distribute it once a year via the farmer’s market and pre-orders off social media, our email list and word-of-mouth. In years to come we’ll have it temporarily available to purchase on our website every fall until it’s gone.
I’ve gotta say, designing wine labels is more complicated than I ever imagined before starting this business venture. I for one, have been known to buy a bottle of wine solely for the eye-catching label. If the juice inside the bottle disappoints me then I won’t buy it again but I’ll always try it at least once if the label is intriguing. Now that we have our own vino to label it’s our intent to have eye-catching packaging (with the exception of one we learned a lesson on) so that we can set ourselves apart from the rest AND deliver good juice. At some point though, you realize being different from everyone else essentially means you’re being just like everyone else, because everyone’s trying to be different these days. There’s a fine line to walk in this wine labeling business! So we go with what feels right to us, our vision and our winery, which we’ve designed to be pretty atypical from the start.
That being said, once you have a label you like it doesn’t stop there. You’ve got to make sure there’s even a label paper that fits the size you need (the labels for our 375mL jalapeno wine bottles have to be ordered smaller than our normal-size wine bottle labels, obviously), then you’ve got to make sure that size looks right on your bottle. Or maybe you don’t even want a traditional label. Maybe you want bottle etching. Then there’s the foil decision – do you leave the tops of your bottles “naked” or do you seal the cork with something? Do you customize that piece, as well? And if you know exactly what you want – can you afford it once it’s been designed, printed and shipped? Are people even going to like it after all that?
For someone who really just prefers to make decisions and stick to them – leaving very little room for gray area – sorting out all these small details is often my weakness so it helps knowing I’m not the sole decision maker. Von will often offer a new direction on a label and although at first I’ll have a hard time envisioning it because it’s not what I had in mind, I usually realize he’s onto something. It’s just helpful to have each other to bounce ideas off of and in the case of choosing a label, it’s nice to have some validation (or direction) from someone if you’re doubting your own taste.
So that’s what’s shaking on the wine front this week.
On the food front, I’ve had a super easy and super yummy snack recipe to share with you for a while so I’m finally going to do that today.
If you like chickpeas and you need a crunchy mid-day snack or even a side dish for dinner, this is your thing (it’s a quick thing):
Crispy Roasted Chickpeas
You should know there are recipes for crispy roasted chickpeas all over the Internet, so I can’t really site a source because I just kinda saw a mentioning of them somewhere (can’t remember where) and had a craving for them so I originally looked up a recipe (can’t remember where) and then went my own way once I realized this is about as difficult as turning on the oven and pouring some water. So here you go – easy chickpeasy.
- 2 cans garbanzo beans/chickpeas – You’ll want two cans because only using one is kidding yourself – don’t think you won’t eat the entire thing in 4 minutes.
- Olive oil – I don’t know – a drizzle maybe? What’s a drizzle anyway – a tablespoon? Sure, go with that.
- Sea salt
- Any other spice you want. Cumin is good although I normally just use a small amount of sea salt and call it. If you use garlic you should wait until the beans come out of the oven before tossing it in or else it will burn. Burnt garlic makes me sad.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Drain and rinse the beans, then shake off as much excess water as you can. Lay the beans out on a few folded paper towels or a kitchen towel.
Lay more paper towels or another kitchen towel on top and press lightly to dry the beans as much as possible. Some people roll the beans around at this point in order to remove the thin layer of skin. I feel like this is totally unnecessary but do as you please.
Place the beans on a cookie sheet and drizzle your drizzle of oil over them. Then sprinkle your sea salt and other spice(s) as you like. Toss the beans around with a spatula so everyone is happy and covered with oil and spice (seriously, let’s keep this PG friends).
Roast them for about 30 to 40 minutes or until the beans are a golden brown. Don’t burn them because that will suck.
As if I have to tell you this, but you’ll want to consume these within 24-48 hours because they harden up the longer they are left out. The crunch factor is lovely with these but apparently too much crunch factor just tastes like chalk. It’s ok though because these won’t last in your kitchen longer than a few hours.
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