There are a total of 9 items required by the TTB (Alcohol & Tobacco Tax & Trade Bureau) to appear on all wine labels to be sold for consumption in the U.S. The first item I’ll start with here is the brand name. This is also a common guide used by consumers when they are shopping for wine, since just like any of our consumer product items we all become “brand familiar” and “brand loyal”.
The TTB requires this item and in their regulations refer to it generally being the most prominent item on the label. A winery would want this to be the case as well for the ease of their consumers being able to spot it. There are some regulations around brand names. They are not allowed to imply age for one. What that means is for example a brand name of “Aged Cellars Red” would not meet their approval. They would however be OK with this brand name if it became qualified with the actual word brand in it, which would mean it would become Aged Cellars Brand”. The TTB is also watchful of brand names that include an AVA (approved viticultural area) in them. An example of this would be a brand name of “Napa Valley Cellars”. The use of an AVA on a label has specific percentage requirements attached to it, (details coming in a future blog) so since Napa Valley is an AVA that could conflict with their other label details and cause it to not qualify. Primarily a brand name is the name of a winery so it will be the name that is tossed around in wine discussions, searched for on store shelves, and is potentially scrutinized by the TTB in their efforts of protecting the consumer. Next item up: Varietal!