Last week, we posted about how wine is finding a home in containers other than glass bottles. Since we can't get enough of this topic, we decided to interview Ryan Harms, founder of Underwood Winery in Oregon, about the canned wine phenomenon. Here's what we talked about.
Q: Why did you decide to start "bottling" in cans?
A: Putting wine in a can not only saves on packaging costs, but opens up the wine drinking experience to places where it had previously been difficult, such as outdoor events or when portability is needed. Canned wine costs approximately 40 percent less to package compared to the equivalent 9L case of wine in glass bottles. [We are] at the forefront of this "beerification" of wine trend, a movement which aims to break down the pretense and formality often associated with wine drinking.
Q: How is the wine affected by being in a can?
A: The wine that we can is the same exact blend that we put into bottle. Underwood wines are all about fruit, freshness and easy drinking, making these wines perfect for drinking from a can – or a bottle.
Courtesy of Underwood Winery
Q: Should canned wine be stored in any special way?
A: Cans are a very secure closure, tighter then screw caps, corks or crown caps. Knowing this, it becomes very important to think about the style of wine that goes into the can. Underwood wines are fruit-driven and lend themselves to the can better than other styles might. I would expect canned wines to remain fresher and show less change from canning to consumption than wines closed in screw cap, and certainly less than wines closed in cork.
Q: What do you see for the future of canned wine? Will they one day become more popular than bottled wine?
A: Consumers are looking for options that provide portability and portions that fit better with their needs. There are a lot of consumers who would like to have wine on a regular basis, but can't rationalize a 750ml bottle so instead look for other beverage options. Seems like the wine business is finally hearing consumers and working to offer them something they are asking for.