An Interactive Label That's Anything but Ordinary

(Wine Business Monthly)

Andrew Adams
May 1, 2024
The Ordinary Fellow

Colorado vinter Ben Parsons helped create the Millennial urban winery aesthetic and scene when he launched The Infinite Monkey Theorem winery in 2008. The winery’s witty name, irreverent attitude and style resonated with a new generation of consumers who also embraced Parsons’ use of cans, kegs, refillable growlers, and lesser-known varietals. Parsons leveraged the success of the winery’s flagship location in Denver to expand with regional distribution and opened another winery and taproom in Austin, Texas.

In 2019, Parsons left his principal role with the company to get back out in the vineyard. Following the COVID-19 pandemic (which shuttered the Austin winery), he is no longer involved with Infinite Monkey Theorem. Parsons is now wholly focused on his new estate winery, The Ordinary Fellow, located in Palisade, Colo., which takes its name from a pub in Parsons’ native England.

Always striving to do something a bit different, Parsons told WineBusi-ness Monthly his winery’s label was inspired by a kaleidoscope “to create a never-ending array of patterns that are unique to my journey as a winemaker through the years.”

Designed by the Boulder, Colo.-based designer Moxie Sozo, the label seems like any other-but it features a sleeve that can be rotated around a separate base label. As the outer label is turned, die cuts in the sleeve reveal different descriptive words or elements of label art that pertain to the wine in the bottle and Parsons’ career as a winemaker.

Parsons entered his wines into the series category of the 2023 Pack Design Awards. He said many people-including the contest judges-fail to realize that each base label on the respective wines tells the same story of Parsons camping in a remote corner of Colorado and encountering a bear. The varying die cuts of each wine’s sleeve, however, use different words from that same story to reveal unique elements of the wine or Parsons’ winemaking.

“For example, on the under label there’s a photo of my pet labrador, Darby, and a silhouette of my family,” he said. “There’s also a pint of Guinness on a forklift as all winemakers do is drink beer and drive forklifts.”

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