Cooper's Hawk Winery & Restaurants

UX Research, UI/UX Design, Interaction Design

Cooper's Hawk Winery & Restaurants embarks on an extraordinary journey, breathing life into an app that transcends mere transactions. It unfolds as a captivating odyssey through the world of wine, seamlessly weaving together users' digital and physical experiences with the soulful essence of Cooper's Hawk wines. The app becomes a vibrant canvas for authentic engagement, fostering connections that resonate at the heart of the wines.

Adopting a holistic approach, the reimagined app transforms into a virtual sommelier, crafting personalized wine expeditions for users. At its core is the Wine Personality feature, a captivating showcase that brings wines to life through compelling visuals and essential details. This empowers users to embark on a unique and enjoyable exploration, delving into the diverse stories woven into each bottle.

Methods — Questionnaires, User Interviews, Persona Creation, Journey Mapping

Tools — Qualtrics XM, Dovetail, Figma

Timeline — 2023  |  14 weeks

Background — A Toast to Challenges & Opportunities

As the allure of in-person dining waned, the wine sector found itself at a crossroads, prompting industry experts to call for a revival. Recognizing the urgent need to attract fresh interest and halt further decline, my mission was clear: to uncover the preferences of elusive millennials within the Cooper's Hawk Wine Club and revitalize interest in the wine sector. Through extensive research and thoughtful design, my aim was to craft a user-centric platform that not only enriched the wine-buying experience but also cultivated a new vibrant community of wine enthusiasts.


Desk Research — Understanding the User

As I crafted my methodology, I handpicked research techniques and frameworks specifically tailored to unravel the intricate nuances of online wine shopping behaviors. Rooted in in-depth research on wine trends and consumer behavior, each step was meticulously designed to foster a comprehensive understanding.

Target Users

Initially targeted towards a specific group, I encountered the challenge of pinpointing such a niche demographic. Recognizing the value of diversity in enriching the design process, I pivoted to include a broader range of users. As the project unfolded, my focus shifted towards comprehending the obstacles and concerns encountered by potential wine buyers. My new objective was to create a platform that offered a welcoming and intuitive experience for both current wine club members and potential customers.

User Interviews — Fermenting Empathy

As I explored the world of online wine shopping through remote interviews, each conversation offered invaluable insights into the concerns and uncertainties of newcomers. These discussions weren't just casual chats; they were deep explorations into the worries and hesitations of those venturing into online wine purchasing. One participant's experience in physical stores highlighted the significance of clear signage and knowledgeable staff. Their concerns about navigating the app without expert assistance underscored a significant design challenge. With empathy driving my efforts, I worked to tackle these concerns, ensuring that the redesigned platform would stand as a trusted companion throughout every wine-buying journey.


Omnichannel Design

At the heart of my project was a dedication to omnichannel design. I aimed to craft user experiences that flowed effortlessly across different channels and touchpoints, with a particular emphasis on refining the mobile app to enhance in-person interactions. Creating a seamless journey for users, whether they engaged digitally or in person, was essential.

Thematic Analysis

Through thematic analysis, I meticulously examined data, revealing recurring patterns and emerging themes. The analysis uncovered key insights that guided subsequent research stages. Inclusivity and accessibility were top priorities during the redesign. The app underwent a transformation to feature a user-friendly interface, removing barriers for newcomers. The overarching goal was to create a warm and inviting atmosphere, encouraging engagement within the vibrant community of wine enthusiasts.

Personalized Recommendations

Create user profiles to store preferences

Wine Education & Discovery

Engage users with informative content & interactive features

Seamless Accessibility

Present concise, eye-catching product images & brief descriptions

User Personas

After carefully analyzing research insights, I meticulously sculpted a diverse array of user personas, each finely crafted to represent distinct segments within the wine club's membership. These personas surpassed surface descriptions; they were infused with empathy and depth, reflecting the authentic motivations, challenges, and aspirations of current and perspective members.


Drawing Inspiration

Drawing inspiration from the essence of the restaurant and winery, the UI design encapsulated the vibrant ambiance of the physical locations. The color palette is curated to reflect the warm hues of oak barrels and the enchanting hues of various wines, from deep reds to delicate whites. Typography played a crucial role in conveying the winery's elegance and sophistication. Thoughtfully selected fonts embody a sense of refinement and timelessness, mirroring the upscale yet approachable nature of the Cooper's Hawk brand.

Visual Hierarchy — Guiding the Eye

Creating an eye-catching experience was essential. I delved deep into how users naturally interact with content, making sure every element leads them smoothly. Version 02 wasn't just a cleanup; it became a well-organized showcase of visuals. Built on eye movement research, this approach ensures users can easily navigate the app, regardless of their screen size.


A Pocket Sommelier — Onboarding for Personalization

The onboarding experience was more than just a questionnaire; it was a personalized journey into the world of wine exploration. A virtual sommelier, the app begins to understand users' wine preferences, tailoring recommendations aligned with each unique taste profile. The goal was to foster a connection with users seeking novel wine discoveries. It's more than an onboarding process; it's the initiation into a personalized wine expedition.

Tailoring to Taste — Card-based Interaction

Card-based interactions made wine discovery fun and interactive, mirroring the excitement of browsing the aisles at a Cooper's Hawk location. These adaptable cards act as visual signposts, guiding users through the intricacies of wine types, sweetness levels, and tasting notes with ease.

Beyond Discovery — An Integrated Hub

The redesigned app is a one-stop-shop integrating comprehensive wine information, user reviews, and in-app purchases. This integration bridges the gap between online and in-person interactions, creating a unified brand experience that connects users with the brand's offerings.

A Visual Feast Engaging the Senses

The 'Wine Personality' feature is a visual feast that engages users' senses. Bright, mouthwatering images paired with essential information create an immersive experience, catering to diverse accessibility needs. It's about crafting an environment where every user, regardless of ability, can enjoy a seamless and delightful digital winery journey.

A Visual Feast Engaging the Senses

The app's 'Wine Personality' feature uncovers the unique essence of each wine, offering a comprehensive overview of color, grape varietals, tasting notes, and food pairings. This carefully curated presentation is backed by research findings that highlight the importance of an approachable and visually engaging design. The app's bright and mouthwatering images, in conjunction with essential information, create an immersive experience, catering to users with diverse accessibility needs. By making the content visually appealing and easy to comprehend, the app ensures that all users, regardless of their abilities, can enjoy a seamless and delightful digital winery journey.

From Vine to Glass Telling the Wine's Story

In the 'Wine Story' section, users are transported to the heart of each wine's origin. Vibrant representations become more than visual allure — they invite users to delve into the unique story behind each wine. The app goes beyond being a discovery platform; it becomes a treasure trove of informative articles, tailored to diverse interests and preferences.

Next Steps

The Testing Blueprint

The original project plan is a blueprint for a journey into user behavior and usability. This plan, initially spanning distinct age groups, holds the promise of uncovering intricate usability challenges through a combination of structured questionnaires and eye-tracking technology. It's a roadmap unexplored, poised to reveal nuanced insights essential for shaping a user experience rooted in real-world behavior.

A Testament to User-Centricity

While the journey concluded at the redesign phase without formal user testing, every decision was rooted in empathy and research-driven insights. It wasn't just about creating a digital platform; it was about crafting an experience that celebrated the joy of wine and brought people together.


“Research is about engaging in a conversation with your users and learning from them.”
Erika Hall

In this project, I gained a profound appreciation for the role of research findings in driving the design process. While my initial plans provided a foundation, diving deep into extensive user research proved to be a transformative experience. As a dedicated researcher, my primary focus was on understanding the users' needs, allowing their insights to lead and shape every design decision. The research journey involved conducting thorough user interviews and meticulously analyzing feedback. These insights not only illuminated the essence of user preferences but also inspired thoughtful adjustments and essential design elements that resulted in a more user-centric and impactful redesign.

Recognizing the paramount importance of the users' journey, I embraced the responsibility of being both a researcher and designer. Balancing these responsibilities came with its set of tests and triumphs. With my mentor's constructive input and support, I gained the confidence to rely on my instincts while staying attuned to user needs. Time constraints and unexpected delays prompted me to prioritize and manage the project efficiently. Through open-mindedness and iteration, I cultivated the adaptability required to keep the user experience at the core. This reflection celebrates the significance of my capstone project as an undergraduate. I learned to champion user-centricity, grounding my designs in empathy and research-driven decisions.

Disclaimer  —
This redesign concept for Cooper's Hawk Winery & Restaurants stems from an independent creative exercise, devoid of any commission or endorsement from the company. The product photography utilized in this presentation has been sourced from Cooper's Hawk Winery & Restaurants solely for visual demonstration purposes.