JWL Issue #093: A Look at Canned and Box Bag Wine

April 21, 2020

Hello and welcome to this week's Josh's Wine List. This is the final week we will exist in this current format.

Being introduced this week are three new formats of emails. The fully redesigned Josh's Wine List email will be live from next week.

On Wednesdays at 5pm we will introduce 'The Sip' this is a short email debunking wine jargon. When I started the weekly email two years ago, this used to be part of the long email but fell away. Well, after much demand it's back.

Then on Fridays, you'll be hearing more directly from Wine List: this is a place where you might hear about surplus wine we have available, customer feedback we're looking for, or anything else. As ever please let us know what you think.

Last Friday we emailed you letting you know about surplus wine. The entire back catalogue we had sold out in just two hours. We've dug a bit deeper in the warehouse to find some more.

May wines have arrived and will be shipping these from the 30th for existing customers.

This week's newsletter is a canned wine special.

Finally, as well as the usual 'six bottle cases' for Wine List, we're also going to be launching a special one-off rosé box to launch next month too. If you want to reserve one, hit reply now.


Canned Wine is a new wine company focusing on smaller servings in cans. 'Grüner' is one of the first two in the range, and is really very good. If you want to blow away the cobwebs of what you think canned wine will be like, here's a good place to start. This is fresh, lively and aromatic. Three cans costs £16.99.

In the supermarkets, Nice Pale Rosé (£2.65 per can from Sainsbury's) is everything you want from a Provençal rosé: crisp, endlessly refreshing, with a big nose of strawberries. And it doesn't even come from Provence!

Uncommon Bubbly Rosé is English sparkling rosé in a can. Which must be able to lay the claim to the only wine that does that. £4.99 from Waitrose, this is proper park wine: fun, delicious and exactly what you want from a can.

Back before lockdown, we ran down to our local Tesco to try out their canned wines. Amongst some more reputable brands was the Barefoot Pinot Grigio. I was expecting this to be too high in sugar to be interesting, but in fact it was highly quaffable. Not bad for £2.49.


Surely canned wine, like bag in box wine, is all naff?

Welcome to 2020, where our social activities are via Zoom, and our wine comes in cans. First and foremost, canned wine, like bag in box wine, and like regular wine, can be both good and bad. Being in a can doesn't mean it will be one or the other.

What it does mean, however, is that your wine won't age very well. Wine that ages does so with a slow process of oxidation over time. Therefore, in a completely sealed can, there's no oxygen that will reach the wine. That said, most wine is drunk young and so this won't apply.

On the flip side, you've got environmental benefits from the wine being in a can, most wine is drunk young anyway, and the reduced serving size.

The 750ml wine bottle exists because it was the lung capacity of a French glass blower. And yet all this time later, we're still using it for 99% of wine. Maybe it's time for a change?

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