You’ve no doubt heard of wine in a box, which can be surprisingly good, but did you know there’s also wine in a can that isn’t half bad? Our friends at Sunset Magazine have compiled a list of six surprisingly great canned wines that will make a wonderful addition to your next camping cooler. Let’s take a look:
- Companion Wine Co. 2017 Riesling (Arroyo Seco; $9). Wonderfully mineral, with a lime-wedge tang, this Riesling is made by Ryan Stirm of Stirm Wine Co. This wine maker has worked to identify wines that do well in aluminum. According to Stirm, there’s no risk of light damage when wine is canned properly, and oxidation is slower.
- Ferdinand Wines 2017 Albariño (Borden Ranch; $9). Evan Frazier, who works at luxury Napa label Kongsgaard Wine, picks the grapes quite early in order to preserve the vibrant acidity of this pineapple-tinged Albariño choice.
- Scribe Winery 2017 Una Lou Rosé (Carneros; $40). Crisp, tangy grapefruit and cooling cucumber flavors blend nicely in this pale rosé of Pinot Noir.
- Sans Wine Co. 2017 Carbonic Carignan (Mendocino; $15). There’s no added sulfur in this easy-drinking red made from 75-year-old vines. Softly perfumed with pleasing, dusty tannins.
- Dos Cabezas WineWorks NV #Méthode Canpenoise (Wilcox, Arizona; $48). A light, dry, delicate blend of Grenache, Riesling, and Tempranillo with a pleasing strawberry scent, this selection is aged in French oak barrels before a secondary fermentation in a liter-size can.
- Nomikai NV California Rosé Fizzy (California; $4.50). This blend of varietals from California is made in a collaboration with Ryan and Megan Glaab of Ryme Cellars, and offers a taste sensation of effervescent tangy peach and lemon zest that’s best if you drink it straight from the can.
Since we’re thinking outside the (wine) box (and bottle), who says your wine has to be in a glass? When you’re packing your picnic basket or loading up the camping gear, don’t forget to toss in some fun with cute wine gifts like a coffee mug that doubles as a wine mug. We’re pretty sure your wine will taste just as good, and a personalized mug will make sure everyone knows whose drink belongs to whom. For an unbreakable drinking glass that also travels well, add some plastic stadium cups you can use at the beach, on the boat, or at the campsite. Want to carry the wine theme into your meal prep? Bring along a wine-themed tempered glass cutting board to help you prepare some finger food options to go along with your wine, because after all, what’s a great glass – or can – of wine without a delicious appetizer to go with it? Step up from campfire s’mores on your next jaunt into the woods, and try one or more of these almost-instant appetizers, also courtesy of the good folks at Sunset Magazine.
Hummus and Feta
Brine-packed feta cheese
Zaatar (Middle Eastern spice blend of thyme, oregano, marjoram, toasted sesame seeds, and salt)
Pita bread wedges
Simply spread some hummus on a plate, add a few wedges of feta on the side, sprinkle with spice and drizzle olive oil over it all. Place a few wedges of pita bread on the side and you’ve got a nice appetizer.
Cucumber Caprese Bites
1 loaf ciabatta bread
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
24 small fresh basil leaves
1 Persian cucumber, thinly sliced crosswise into 24 pieces (or use a 3-in. piece of English cucumber cut into half-moons)
8 oz 1-in. fresh mozzarella balls, drained
Fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper
How to make it:
Split bread horizontally and trim rounded ends of base and any firm portions along sides; save top and trimmings for other uses. Brush base with 1 tbsp. olive oil. Cut lengthwise into thirds, then crosswise into eighths to make 24 squares. Set bread squares soft side up on a serving board. Arrange a basil leaf on each piece, then add a cucumber slice and mozzarella ball; skewer with toothpicks. Drizzle with remaining 2 to 3 tbsp. olive oil; season generously with salt and pepper.
Dried Fruit and Brie
There really is no “making” – Just place a wedge of brie cheese on a plate, add a few dried apricots and cherries on the side, and consume with gusto.
1 Tbsp Lemon juice
2-1/2 Tbsps Olive oil
1 tsp minced fresh basil
Salt and pepper
How to make it:
Peel orange and separate into sections or slices. Place an orange slice or section on a single lettuce leaf, add an avocado slice, drizzle with mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, basil, salt and pepper.
Sardines and Crackers
Fresh lemon wedges
How to make it:
Place a serving of sardines on a cracker, squeeze some fresh lemon onto sardine, sprinkle with chile flakes, and enjoy with the canned wine of your choice.
We hope we’ve opened your mind to the possibility of adding canned wines to your camping cuisine repertoire. Who says camp food has to be limited to hot dogs and campfire-roasted marshmallows? Add some panache to your next camping picnic or tailgate party with these canned wines and classy appetizers.