Canned wine is a growing trend in the USA, but is still a budding one here at home. Our wine writer Greg Landman looks at the benefits of wine in a can and suggests some brands to try.
Have you ever thought to try canned wine? Of course one is not expected to drink it straight from the can – that is so not our style; one pours it into a glass to savour it as it should be done. The problem with drinking it from a can – apart from how it looks – is that you cannot smell the wine or see the colour – both important attributes when enjoying a glass.
But what’s good about it?
However there are some advantages to this way of packaging. For those who are only looking to enjoy a glass or two, buying cans is more economical and not as wasteful. Though, when I come across a recipe that calls for leftover wine, I ask myself, “What is ‘leftover’ wine?” Cans are also more durable when being transported to a braai or party and when packing a picnic basket you don’t have to remember to include the corkscrew.
More mature drinkers – I am choosing my words very carefully here – still choose cork or screw cap bottles at a pinch. But it seems that millennials are embracing cans at a rate of knots which is taking away the breath of the wine industries in the USA and Europe. There is something so appealing about wine in a can, much less intimidating, very approachable, no pretensions whatsoever. Another factor is that young drinkers feel they could be more amenable to tasting new wines provided they didn’t have to buy a whole bottle to do so. Those are some of the reasons why in the US wine in cans grew 43% from June 2017 to June 2018 and is now a $45 million business with more and more companies like Lila Wines and Nomadica (pictured above) contributing to its growth.
One of the big sellers has been Francis Ford Coppola Winery’s Sofia, named after his daughter. The wines are being presented in fresh new packaging which obviously appeals to a younger market but make no mistake there’s nothing silly about it. This new trend is for all wine drinkers even though not all will agree. The name of the game is new, approachable, portable fun – in a can.
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Can you buy it here?
Yes you can. One of the only canned wines currently on the market is Chateau Del Rei – Castle of the King – an easy drinking bubbly made from Chenin with a dash of Muscat to give it some added sweetness. Fresh and fizzy, one is tempted to drink it like beer –from the can – but don’t do that.
As for other portable wine options, there are a few available that don’t come in cans like the delightful Proseccos in small bottles that have been around for years. Da Luca Minis and the pint-sized Bottega Gold come to mind as handy enough to be popped one into a handbag when rushing out somewhere – or am I going too far?
Looking for more of Greg’s wine suggestions? Click here.
And let us not forget the very popular wine in Châteauneuf de cardboard – of all sizes – a crowd pleaser if ever there was one. The important thing is to make wine part of your daily life no matter how you do it. It is one of the most precious gifts Mother Nature gives us.
Words Greg Landman
Photography Lila Wines, Nomadica and Supplied