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Messina Hof Uses Augmented Reality on Three Labels

Messina Hof Winery is the first Texas winery to use augmented reality on some of their wine bottle labels. Augmented Reality, or AR, is a technology that can superimpose computer images while viewing the real world. An easy example of this is watching football games on television. The producers color the line of scrimmage and the line that needs to be reached for a first down. Those lines were computer generated, they are not on the field of play. This example of AR can enhance the experience for the viewers of the game by letting them know if the offense is close to a first down or if the defense is stopping the offense. But what about wine bottles?

AR turns wine bottle label alive with a gentle shower.

Can Augmented Reality enhance the wine experience? After viewing several videos of posts showing AR wine bottle labels, I would conclude that whether AR enhances the wine experience depends on the individual and the AR experience after the novelty wears off. One wine producer crafted several wines with individual heads on the labels. During the AR experience the head talks and you hear what is said. It is more about the person on the label than the wine in the bottle. Another example viewed showed how a husband/wife team met, married and work in a vineyard, winery and sharing the fruits of their labors. This example of AR allows the viewer to learn about the winery and its owners who made the wine in the bottle. What about Messina Hof’s AR?

This bottle was sitting on a puzzle with the AR surrounding the bottle.

If you are interested in the novelty of seeing a wine bottle label come to life, Messina Hof has done a great job; however, they went beyond novelty. The three Messina Hof wines that feature AR have unique proprietary names Vitality, Abounding and Emblaze. These names go with the images on the labels and the AR experience. One has to download to their phone or tablet the Messina Hof app. Then they can aim the camera on their device at the wine bottle label and see a grapevine sprout from the ground and grow twirling around the wine bottle. A cluster of grapes form on the vine and ripen. The narration mentions, rather philosophically, the name of the wine. As you are viewing the AR on your phone or tablet, notice the background beyond the wine bottle and AR, it is your surface that the bottle rests on, in our case a jigsaw puzzle in progress.

How does Messina Hof AR wine labels enhance the wine experience? Listen to the narration, perhaps playing it more than once. Questions about the content come to mind. These questions can spark dinner table conversations. The AR experience along with the wine, food and friends can add a dimension to the experience.


This yellow colored wine was a blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Gewürztraminer and Pinot Blanc. The wine had 12% alcohol. The very aromatic aroma had traces of flowers and tropical fruit with a hint of lemon. The taste included honeysuckle, citrus and melon while the finish was 

crisp, refreshing and cleansing. Use the wine as an aperitif or paired with cheeses, poultry or fish.

Vitality Table Talk

1. Discuss the importance of rain to agriculture.

2. Specifically for grapevines, when is the best time of the year for rain?

3. What is the worst time of the year for grapevines to receive rain?

4. Is rain better for vineyards or should irrigation of the vines be used where allowed?

5. What was your impression of augmented reality (AR) as it played?


The Abounding dry red wine was crafted with grapes from the Texas High Plains AVA. The 13.5% alcohol wine was a blend of Merlot, Petite Sirah, Tempranillo, Primitivo, and Cabernet Sauvignon. The translucent dark ruby colored wine had an aroma of a fruit salad of dark berry fruits and other black fruits. The taste was reminiscent of leather, black raspberries, blackcaps, earthiness-forest floor and black cherries. The wine had a medium-full body with mild tannins. The finish had a nice integration of fruit and oak influences. Pair the wine with beef dishes.

Abounding Table Talk

1.  Raise your glass to a toast for the harvest. Why aren’t all harvests the same year after year?

2.  What vineyard conditions, during the year, provide an abundance of fruit?

3. Why do some vine growers drop fruit?

4. What was your impression of the augmented reality (AR) as it played?


Messina Hof’s use of AR leads to discussion.

Emblaze with 12% alcohol was a proprietary blend. The wine had a translucent dark ruby color with a dark pink hue. Black fruit was on the aroma. The taste was slightly sweet with black raspberries and black plums. It reminded me of a black fruit pie. The wine had a medium/full body with mild tannins. Pair this wine with a rocking chair in front of a fireplace or wood burning stove on a cold, snowy day.

Emblaze Table Talk

1. How well does this wine pair with a fire on a cold winter’s day?

2. Does the wine provide warmth and comfort?

3. If port is too alcoholic for you, can Emblaze be used instead of a port?

4. What was your impression of augmented reality (AR) as it played?

The use of AR on wine bottle labels can bridge the gap between the wine consumer and the winegrowers and winemakers, especially during the time of the pandemic.


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