Hahn Family Wines in Soledad, Calif., used an illustration inspired by a 1895 French bicycle advertisement for the label of their 2007 Cycles Gladiator Cabernet Sauvignon. But that didn’t fly with Alabama’s Beverage Control agency. The regulatory body banned sale of the wine within the state, citing pornography, and advised the winery to never submit the label again as it had “offended people in the office.” Hahn owner Bill Legion says he’s gotten more free publicity out of the ruling than he would have made in Alabama sales. By being banned, the winery has also joined an elite group: wine labels deemed too racy.
For the full article, check out the new issue of Wine Spectator, on newsstands September 22, 2009.