I drink some serious wine. But I don’t take wine too seriously. I don’t really know much about wine but like how it tastes. I snap pictures of bottles of wine I like so I don’t forget what kind I like. I pin funny wine quotes on my Pinterest boards. I drink wine from a box. I swallow the wine at wine tastings instead of spit it out. I once had a 1985 Bordeaux and was tingling from head to toe in bed later that night. I buy wine based on the cute label.

Wine is fun! Much of the enjoyment of wine is picking out a bottle. You can be a wine expert or wine newbie and still get a kick out of choosing an attention-grabbing bottle of vino.

Labels with slick typography, clever humor, funny animals and cutesy girlie designs are high on the list of attributes for me. Can you judge a wine by its label? Sure, why not! It makes tasting it that much more fun.

Here are 5 red wines I’ve tried based on looks alone:

Seven Deadly Zins

seven deadly zins

Clever name, creative label and I like how the 7 and the Z are intertwined with the halo. But how does it taste? I started the grill and thought this Zinfandel would make a nice accompaniment to a juicy piece of steak. Of course, I was right. It definitely has a peppery nose and flavor, which I appreciate in wine. It also has a nice taste of berry. Buy a bottle for about $13, start up the grill, and enjoy the rest of your summer with this wine.

House Red Wine

House Wine

I dig the label. Its chunky and bold font with the simple use of black and white with a splash of red is appealing. Designers might be drawn to it, too. I’m always drawn to wine from the state of Washington because I’m not sure what to expect. House Red Wine is a solid wine comprised of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Zinfandel and Petit Verdot. Not too fruity, not too sweet and about right on robustness. Neither the label nor the actual wine tries too hard in my estimation. For under $12, a good choice.

Colores Del Sol

Colores del Sol

In the store you can probably purchase this wine for about $9, which would totally be worth it. I, however, paid a million dollars in a restaurant for this Malbec from Argentina. I liked it enough to take a photo of the label in the restaurant (gasp!). Not a super burly wine, and it tastes and smells of dark fruits and pepper. Definitely better with food.

La Vieille Ferme

La Vieille Ferme

Hooray for the screw top and the $8 price tag. This bottle looks homey with the roosters and country-ish font. I got a bottle as a gift and was excited to try it out. For some reason, I didn’t love it. The finish is too inky and strong for me. I bought a bottle another time, hoping the next time around I’d like it more. No such luck. Other people like it, though. One reviewer found this blend of Grenache, Syrah, Carignan and Cinsault grapes a “surprisingly flavorful, easy-going red” that “provides tremendous relief to the beleaguered consumer looking for good quality at the $10 price point.”

Da Vinci Chianti

Da Vinci Chianti

Haters are gonna hate. But I like this Chianti. You can get it from Wal-Mart, too, for about $14. The graceful and feminine label is familiar to me, as a bottle or two consistently resides in the old wine rack at home. I love the look of this bottle.
Chianti is a Tuscan red wine, made primarily from the Sangiovese grape. This particular brand has 10% Merlot grapes. Da Vinci is a medium weight wine with flavors of cherry and other red fruit. It’s easy to drink and pairs nicely with pastas and meat. To quote Leonardo da Vinci: “The discovery of a good wine is increasingly better for mankind than the discovery of a new star.” Couldn’t agree more.

About the Author:  Melissa Davidson is the Manager of Social Media at CityPASS. She can likely be found drinking wine throughout many of the 11 exciting destinations CityPASS has to offer.