Many top wineries are taking a cue from beer brewers and choosing canned packaging. In fact, the explosion of canned wines and ciders are taking over a large section of market share. Sales of canned wine dramatically increased in the US, with year-over-year sales up 43% as people become more receptive to alternative packaging for wine, according to The Drinks Business, (August 15, 2018). Canned wine has become a mainstream category today and it is not without good reason.
A new canned wine company based locally in Washington, D.C., Saturday Session, is leading the pack. Co-Founder, Kim Montgomery, describes her inspiration, “Louis Aronne and I are the co-founders of Saturday Session, and started working together on this project in June 2017. We were working at a beer company and watching the wave of casual wine emerge. However, we could see a problem with these wines – simply canning full strength wine doesn’t solve the problem of ‘sessionability’ in extended drinking occasions. This is because these wines are too high in alcohol, sweetness, and calories to make them easily quaffable. So, we set out to make a delicious wine that is also drinkable over a day time session – something low in sugar, lighter in calories and alcohol. Something we’d want to drink every Saturday Session!”
On her choice to use canned packaging, Kim says, “We canned our wine because we wanted to create a unique alternate to beers and ciders in daytime, social occasions – like drinking at the beach, by the pool, at a BBQ, or a tailgate. We believe in these occasions, traditional wines in a bottle don’t work – as they aren’t convenient or even too formal. We also chose a can because we see this as being a strong consumer cue for refreshment, which is core to our product!”
Kim says, cans provide a special expression and they’re key to delivering a refreshing character. “We love hearing people open our wines and being surprised at how refreshing they are, as well as the unexpected quality level.”
On the winemaking method, Kim says, “Our process is to take fully fermented wine [sourced from France], then blend and carbonate [the juice] before canning. We love the process of making great wines.”
Another exceptional canned wine, RAMONA, a New York based company, is headed up by the beverage director of Momofuku and former sommelier at Eleven Madison Park, Jordan Salcito. Jordan’s serious wine clout and passion for the Italian cocktail, Aperol Spritz, led her to create this deliciously casual wine cooler, which is a blend of Sicilian red wine and organic grapefruit juice. Served at the Michelin-starred Dabney’s wine bar, Dabney Cellar, with a splash of club soda, RAMONA is a casual refresher that is taken seriously by wine experts and sommeliers.
My favorite canned libations
Saturday Session Rosé, 250ml Can Four Pack $10.99
Made from 100% Grenache grapes from the Languedoc region of France, this bright and fresh rosé offers flavors of strawberries, raspberries, peach, and melon. It is slightly fizzy for a refreshing and carefree feel. Take it to the beach for a discrete libation that is low in alcohol.
Saturday Session Sauvignon Blanc, 250ml Can Four Pack $10.99
Made from 100% Sauvignon Blanc Grapes from Southern France, this tart and juicy wine offers persistent, fat bubbles and flavors of lime, green apple, and grapefruit.
RAMONA, 250ml Can Four Pack $14.99 – The Lowest Price on the Web!
Do not miss RAMONA! Unlike the wine coolers from the 1980s this gem is not syrupy sweet. Instead, it offers a crisp and refreshing bitter grapefruit flavor and bright acidity to balance the sugar. Find it at Schneider’s for the lowest price in the country!
Tin City Cider Company Paso Robles, California, 12oz Can Four Pack $15.99
Made with West Coast apples, this dry hopped cider is barrel fermented for a crisp and refreshing green apple taste. It is bone-dry with a hint of hops and citrus.
Shacksbury Rosé Vergennes, Vermont, 12oz Can Four Pack $11.99
A lovely Vermont rosé cider made from 100% fresh pressed apples from Cornwall, Vermont. Post fermentation, the cider ages on Marquette grape skins to add color, tannin, and red berry character. This is a sophisticated cider with a lovely pink rose petal color and delicate flavor.
Visit Elyse at Schneider’s of Capitol Hill (300 Massachusetts Ave NE) to discover wines you’ll love.