Andrew Peller, winemaker: Wine with latitude

Bringing Ontario's wine region to your aisles.

Who: Andrew Peller, winemaker, Grimsby, Ont.

What: Aisle 43, the rebrand of two of the 100 Andrew Peller retail wine stores in Ontario in July, with eight more locations to open in the next year. The name references both the grocery stores in which the shops are hosted and the latitude of Ontario’s wine region, the same as Tuscany in Italy.

Revolutionary rationale: The democratization of an intimidating product. ‘The trick for us is to intercept host-store traffic, [and] our barriers to new users were largely that the stores were old-fashioned and intimidating,’ says Michelle Brisbois, marketing manager, retail at Andrew Peller. ‘The intent was to bring it down to earth.’

Merchandising was also an issue, with products organized by brand. ‘There was a desire to organize the store in a way that’s innate for the consumer,’ explains Brisbois. ‘It’s what they want, not what we want.’

Design insight: Trading in the wood and leather of the traditional wine store for a bright, cheery feel more integrated with a grocery store. ‘This is a pretty lively experience that suits the way that people are drinking wine these days,’ says Solange Rivard, CD at Toronto retail agency Perennial, who designed the stores.

The white palette with splashes of colour is inspired by the flavours found in wine. Bulkheads feature illuminated close-ups of fresh fruit to draw a connection with food. The bottles are backlit to emphasize colour and industry jargon is simplified, with products organized by colour and price. An automatic wine tasting unit lets consumers sample premium wines – the $1 charge is deducted from the price if they buy – and features an interactive screen for finding food pairings and emailing recipes.

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