Spencer-Roloson Winery of St. Helena, CA.


One of Zenmark’s earliest clients was Spencer-Roloson Winery of St. Helena, California. The founder’s came to us with a simple request: help us come up with a name for our blended red table wine. It turns out distributors aren’t keen to put an unknown producer’s unbranded blend into the marketplace. And consumers are even less likely to purchase an unproven winery’s quite generic “Red Table Wine.”

However, the wine maker was a traditionalist. He didn’t want a name that distracted attention from the contents of the bottle. He wanted the brand to express the essence of his approach: patience, soil, climate and touch. A tall order for our first adult beverage assignment.

The straw that stirred the drink, so to speak, was Palaterra. An elegant blend of palette (a wooden board used for mixing colors for a painting), palate (a person’s appreciation for taste and flavor) and terra (earth, land or territory). The name was crafted to fuse the principles of the wine-maker with the fruit of his labor.

Interestingly, this project also included designing the corporate identity and the full suite of Varietal labels, including Palaterra. All with in-house staff.

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