Tasty Travel-Friendly Wines

Colterris box wine Great Oregon Wine Company
The DropBanditBarefoot
Sofia Blanc de Blancs MiniBackpack Wine
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Enjoying wine in the great outdoors is loads of fun, but toting glass bottles on the trail is no picnic. A new crop of alternatively packaged wines in cartons, pouches, cans, and other trail-ready options is making it easier for all-terrain tippling. Click through this photo gallery to see our picks for eight of the better and more widely available ultra-portable wines, plus a couple of nifty travel-friendly wine vessels that'll be handy when you hit the trail. 

Courtesy AJ Wells/Underwood

It seems only fitting that easy-to-tote-anywhere wines would come from outdoorsy Colorado. Colterris, a winery in the celebrated Grand Valley known for its 100 percent estate wines, produces a line of canned vinos (under $25) that includes a 2016 White Wine marked by its notes of juicy melon, mango and citrus. It's made from a blend of Pinot Gris, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc grapes. Their 2016 Rose, made from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes, evokes fresh raspberries and citrus and would be ideal with BBQ. Their generic-sounding Red Wine, a mix of Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet Franc, is big and spicy. It fairly begs to be enjoyed with a steak. colterris.com

Courtesy Colterris

The Great Oregon Wine Company's Pinot Noir in a can is a solid work'a'day sipper. The reasonable price might be its biggest selling point. Likewise, their Pinot Gris is pleasant, with hints of pear and red apple. The refreshing, crisp Rose is also well worth a try. greatoregonwine.com

Courtesy Great Oregon Wine Company

We’ve had wines named after families and critters. Now we apparently have at least one that shares a bit of insidery surfer lingo, a perfectly fitting thought for a drink that suits a day on the beach. The Drop, a line of canned California wines ($15 for a four-pack), is a nod to the heart-in-throat moment when a surfer must decide to leap to her feet and face down a breaking wave before the board fully connects with the ocean. Their white, a Sauvignon Blanc blend, is tart and grapefruity. The Rose, a mix of Chenin Blanc, Zinfandel and Syrah, is bright and zesty. The Red is a grenade of juicy red fruits. thedropwine.com

Courtesy The Drop

The sole non-canned wine in this lineup, Bandit wines come in liter and half-liter recyclable Tetra Pak cartons. (Under $10 per carton.) Their Pinot Grigio is surprisingly full-bodied, tasting of green apples and pears. The Chardonnay, blessedly free of the buttery taste of some less expensive expressions of this grape, balances apple and pear and zingy acid. Citrus and green apple flavors dominate their tasty Sauvignon Blanc. banditwines.com

Courtesy Bandit

If you’re inclined to sweeter wines, Barefoot Wine's canned sippers are for you. (Under $10 for a four-pack.) They offer a crisp white and rose spritzers as well as a summer red. barefootwine.com

Courtesy Barefoot

Fitting for a movie mogul, Sofia Blanc de Blanc minis (under $20 for four-pack) from Francis Ford Coppola's California winery are packaged in what looks like a swag bag. As if a pop top doesn’t make it easy enough to drink anytime, each can comes with a bendy straw. Adult juice box, anyone? francisfordcoppolawinery.com


Courtesy Sofia

Backpack Wine is sold in four-packs of narrow 250-milliliter cans. (For context, note that airplane-size bottles are 50 milliliters.) Their Snappy White Wine, Riesling-based with a touch of Pinot Blanc, is balanced, with citrus hints. For those partial to big reds, there’s Rowdy Red, a blend of Syrah and Merlot. (Starting at $20.) backpack-wine.com 

Courtesy Backpack Wines

Among the early champions of canned wine, Oregon’s Union Wine Company makes some fine ones, especially their Underwood Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, rose, and bubbly. (Under $10/can.) These wines can hold their own at the dinner table as well as the picnic table. unionwinecompany.com

Courtesy Brandon Scott Herrell/Underwood

Jet Bags ($20) are among the better gizmos for protecting packed bottles from breakage. They're reusable, padded and, best of all, sealable, so even should a bottle bust, the spilled vino will remain contained. thejetbag.com

Being on the road shouldn’t mean you have to forgo keeping wines at the optimal serving temperatures. Corksicle Canteens (starting under $30) are well-designed contraptions that evoke a snazzier Thermos. They keep whites nicely chilled or mulled reds hot for hours. They're especially handy when you wanna take a sip on the sly. And as an added bonus, they’re shatterproof. corksicle.com

Made of nearly indestructible and flexible polymer, Govino vessels ($18 for a four-pack) are hard to distinguish from glass. Not to be confused with more highfalutin Solo cup knockoffs, these have rims as satisfyingly thin as high-quality crystal. govinowine.com

Clever and convenient packaging lets you kick back with a glass - or can - of wine the next time you hit the outdoors.

There's an old wisecrack by "Borscht Belt" comedy legend Henny Youngman: My grandma's over 90. Doesn't need glasses. Drinks straight out of the bottle. His poor booze-slugging grandma might have had an easier time living in 2018, when she had ample choice of wines that are easy to sip from the container. (See our slideshow, above.) 

ON-THE-GO CONTAINERS

American wineries are getting more innovative with their packaging, offering individual servings in cans, juicebox-like containers, and more. Where once canned wine was looked down on, it accounted for $14.5 million in sales in 2016, according to Nielsen, up 123 percent over the year before. 

IT'S HIP TO SIP

You better believe that means there's wine-drinking options aplenty if you're packing your bag for a day on the trail, at the beach, or at a tailgate party. We rounded up a few that are sure to please.

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