Monday, 15 September 2014

Wine in a can? Thanks, but no, thanks!

I was browsing on the web a few days ago, when I found this amusing spot taking the piss of all wine snobs.
I couldn't help but like it because I deeply hate wine snobs. You know what I'm talking about....that people (often too influenced by the label than by the liquid behind it) with an unbearable posh and pretentious attitude thinking they own a superior knowledge so that they are not interested in knowing your opinions because THEY ARE THE ONLY ONES able to understand wine! And, please do not confuse them with wine geeks, those are a totally different and much funnier category (of which I do, occasionally, feel part of).

Anyway, let's not go off topic..the video is actually advertising a company selling wine in a can...and as I got that, I grimaced...with a bit of a snob attitude. So, that really scared me: I don't want to become one of those wine snobs, so I have either to overcome my mental tabu that makes me feel sick at the idea of wine in a can or find a real reason for my skepticism.

Here is where the subject becomes difficult! The problem is that actually there is no scientific reason to believe that aluminum cans can affect wine in any way. Certainly cans are not the best package if your wine needs to age but young easy drinking wines aren't apparently influenced at all by aluminum cans. It's a bit like tetrapak, a more sustainable packaging that can actually make wineries save quite a bit of money.

Plus (someone may say) a few years ago we had similar doubts on the stelvin closures, that were considered outrageous; and it took a while to get them to be accepted by consumers and producers (and the debate is actually still quite open, to be honest). But in that specific case, the innovation was introduced as a solution to corked wines, a real problem affecting approximately 5% of the world wine production.

While, on the other hand, the use of cans to store and sell wine sounds much more like a commercial and marketing move. The idea is always the same: re-branding the wine drinking experience and make wine consumption 'pop' in the category of potential customers who prefers the convenience and speed of cans and ends up choosing beer above wine for this reason.

Nothing wrong about it: in a democratic wine world, anyone can drink whatever they want in any kind of package, but, I believe that a great wine is made of dreams and traditions: a big Barolo or a Bordeaux first growth cannot be put in a'd be a murder!

So it is clear that there is a quite important psychological factor that influence my approach to wine in a can, but it isn't a just a snob attitude. I see wine in its whole complexity: the land where it is coming from, the people who made it, its history and of course its aromas and flavors. I'm not saying I am investigating every bottle of wine I am drinking, or that I only drink top quality wines, but I enjoy drinking wine on its own or with a meal for its specificity and the pleasure it can offer me (even if it's the simplest wine produced by the local farmer) not as I could drink anything commercially standardized such as coke or any industrial beer!   

So I am afraid, my conclusion is that I am not ready yet for wine in a can.
Forgive me but, I'll stick to glass, at least for a while!