kelly magyarics

washington, d.c.-based wine, spirits & lifestyle writer / wine educator

703.203.9463

Yeah, but does it tell me if the wine is any good?

Valpolicella producers Allegrini just launched the world's first talking wine label. The device, using Ecocoder technology, is activated by touching the surface of the label.

“The international wine market is thirsty for information about wine and Italian wines can be difficult for many consumers to understand,” says Marilisa Allegrini, owner of the winery, whose voice can be heard describing the wine on the Ecocoder. ”We hope that this new technology will facilitate their understanding and create a relationship with the person who opens a bottle of our wine.”

The new label technology is being launched through a network of participating retail partners across the United States and coincides with the release of the 2006 vintage of Palazzo della Torre, Allegrini’s most widely-distributed wine. The Ecocoder is being featured in an easy-to-use display that allows shoppers to hear first-hand from the producer about the wine’s history, origin, production, flavors and ideal food pairings.

Pretty interesting--wonder if lots of other wineries will follow suit. I can't help but wonder how much this will add to the cost of a bottle of wine, though. And for wineries who strive to be green not only with their wine but with their packaging as well, is there an environmental impact? I'd love to see it in action, though.