"Black" Pinot?? "BlackCab"?

Recently I’ve noticed some low-end wines using the word “black” on their variety descriptor in the label. I’m not aware of that being a standard enological or viticultural term, and Google comes up empty. Is this based on anything real or just a marketing thing?

(Not looking for any ‘politically correct’ satirical comments but fully expect some given this is WB.)


FYI noir is black in French.

Really??? I didn’t think it’d take long to get a response like that. This place never lets me down.

Actually that label read “Black Pinot Noir”. I guess they just wanted to be sure they got the point across, huh?

If you’re referring in part to the budget-priced Mark West Black Pinot Noir, it’s just marketing. Black label and all.

Press release here:
Introducing Mark West Black: The Dark Side of Pinot

Not clear whether the winery plans other releases under their “Black” label but I wouldn’t be surprised.


I assume that the masses who have made Apothic and its ilk such strong market players are seeking a little more OOMPH in their wines.

I was caught off guard by the sudden appearance of the ClineCashmere Black Magic” blend, though it’s price of $25/btl is probably a shot at being the luxury-end/apex predator for consumers who rely on label colors to indicate the “richness” factor of their wines (see Menage à TroisSilk” and ApothicCrush”).

The failure of back-label language in conveying to consumers the contents of the bottle smartly defers to the use of a codified color scheme in labeling, IMHO. It does accomplish more with less.

Pinot noir…if that matters.

Funny though that Apothic markets a “Dark” further mystifying their consumers.

Late to this party Victor. Another wiseass beat you above.

I know zero about those particular wines or what, if anything, they are trying to signal with that branding.

But “black” is a common term used in product marketing. Uber Black, Johnny Walker Black, American Express black card, etc. Maybe it’s meant to sound sleek or mysterious or something.

I might be able to shine some light on the differences. Apothic Red is Zinfandel based and Apothic Dark is Petite Sirah based.

Mark West is well known for blending Syrah and Petite into their Pinot Noir to make them palatable. Their “Black” label also uses Saignée to increase the skin/juice ratio.