These tough economic times may just be the ‘greatest hour’ for boxed wines

This one’s for Ray.

He’s a dear friend who keeps pestering — uh, I mean encouraging — me to explore boxed wines.

So, Ray, here are some recent observations of boxed wines.

They are courtesy of Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg at The Washington Post:

It’s tough enough to convince wine lovers that screw-cap closures are better than the traditional corks; unscrewing a bottle doesn’t inspire the same poetry as popping a cork. But convincing them that boxed wines are not inferior is even tougher, which might account for the lack of coverage.

However, because boxed wines are one of the fastest-growing segments of the wine market (up more than 40 percent over a year ago, according to the Nielsen Co.), that should change.

How good can a boxed wine be? Sipped at a party in 2005, a 2004 Dtour Macon ($37 for a three-liter cylinder, equal to about $9.25 a bottle) left Page and Dornenburg  “shocked by the quality that came out of this cardboard tube and the vacuum-sealed bag.”

Given the economic times, Ray may be on to something.

I did a quick survey on the Wine News Review aptly named Smarter Wine Search tool and came up with a couple helpful recent articles that include boxed-wine recommendation among a slew of other affordable picks:

  • CBSNews.com opines, “This just might be box-wines’ greatest hour!” The article serves up two three-liter selections: one from California (Black Box Chardonnay 2006, $28) and the other from Australia (Hardy’s Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, $24).
  • The San Jose Mercury News suggests the non-vintage Corbett Canyon Chardonnay, about $10 for three liters, translating to about $2.50 for a 750-milliliter bottle.

Thanks for the idea, Ray!


About this entry