It's Time To Stop Judging Canned And Boxed Wine

Wine has come a long way from its highbrow reputation in the US, and it's available in more varieties than ever. But boxed and canned wines are still unfairly maligned by wine snobs and casual drinkers alike. That's a shame because these products have come a long way from the Franzia your mom kept in the fridge for a year and the canned wine coolers of your youth. The time has come to put down our corkscrews and give them a fair shot.

Not only are there environmental benefits to drinking wine from a box or a can, but the beverage itself can also actually be pretty incredible if you give it a chance. In 2003, Black Box Wines released a line of premium boxed wines that changed the game for non-bottled wines, and the brand has since made appearances on multiple publication's "best boxed wine" lists. Nowadays, being put in a box or can does not excuse mediocrity. Bota Box, Black Box, and Top Box offer several boxed wines with a 4.5+ star rating on Drizly, while Dark Horse, Underwood, Babe, and Francis Coppola top the charts for canned wines. 

The packaging doesn't impact taste

But won't my Pinot Grigio taste like metal, you wonder? And won't the Cabernet Sauv stink of plastic? The answer is a resounding no. In fact, the plastic bags are airtight, so your wine won't be oxidized, and you won't have worry about cork taint when drinking boxed wine. And when it comes to aluminum, cans of wine are actually lined, which keeps that tinniness from leeching out into your booze.

In fact, the packaging is what actually makes these alternative containers so desirable. Sure, the idea of opening a bottle of wine at your beach picnic may seem oh-so romantic and classic, but it can also be a terrific pain. Not only do you have to remember a corkscrew, but you also have to lug a heavy glass bottle to and fro. Plus, many recreation areas, such as pools and public parks, don't allow glass inside. That makes these lightweight boxed and canned alternatives ideal.

Canned or boxed?

There are distinct perks to both boxed and canned wines, and you can find delicious varieties of each. Boxed wine is best for bulk's sake since they typically hold 2-4 bottles in one bag alone. If you're trying to pack your wine for the road and don't want a bulky box taking up room in your tote, you can always slip the bag out and just pack it loose, but keep in mind it's more vulnerable to popping and leaking.

Cans are great if you are drinking for one and need a single-serve option — think swimming in the shallow end of the pool or having a refreshing drink at the end of a hike. Plus, no stemware is needed. One big advantage that canned wine has over its boxed cousin is that it can hold bubbles. For fizz fans, that opens up a whole world of spritzers and even canned champagne that boxed wine just can't compete with.