Wine in a box: pretty and chic boxes that are really good

Good wine is often associated with the festive noise of a cork stopper, but recently the glass is no longer the only container to contain a quality product. In a way, the dethroning of the glass bottle has already begun, thanks to the current rise of its unlikely adversary: ​​the cardboard box.

Because it is an inert material, glass still prevails as the storage of choice for certain types of wine, from sparkling champagne to funky or fermented wines. The boxed model is also not ideal for a wine intended to age, as a box remains stable for up to a year unopened.

However, a glass bottle of wine is not a long-lasting product when opened. After just three to five days, this once-smooth Pinot Noir starts to look more like a zesty vinegar. Boxed wine, on the other hand, stays fresh in its carton for more than a month, up to six weeks.

Until now, boxed wine has been associated with college parties and tight budgets. Let’s face it: a host wouldn’t necessarily be happy to accept a box of Franzia Chilled Red as a gift after a certain age. But, unlike the paperboard wine cartons of days past, the new wave of the product is being championed by smaller companies looking to change the way boxed wine is both viewed and consumed.

Many of these savvy business owners, like Amy Ezrin, Italian wine expert and founder of Sandy Giovese Wines, are changing assumptions about the format. “There’s an army of my colleagues who will stand behind me and say, ‘We’re putting really good wine in cartons now,’ and that gives the consumer huge choice,” says Ezrin. Putting that power of choice in the hands of the consumer, Ezrin tells us, allows them to find and enjoy better wine at a lower cost.

“By better wine, I mean wine made from responsibly sourced grapes – my wine, for example, is made from organically grown grapes in Italy.”

Melissa Monti Saunders is also looking for a quality wine. “My whole career is built around selling very high-end fine wines from all over the world, and I try to make a boxed wine for those people – for drinkers like me, or ambitious drinkers who just want to put something something better in their body,” she says.

Elisha A. Tilghman