Picnic Wines

Fried chicken, check. Barbecue ribs, ready to go. Brownies? A must. You’ve got all the food and fixings for a great lakeside picnic for your Tahoe summer adventure. Now all you need is the wine. But somehow a glass bottle just don’t fit in with the casual, al fresco vibe. Put that bottle down and grab a box, can or carton of wine for your cooler.

Canned wines offer smaller sips, without any leftovers to worry about. A 375 ml can is roughly half a bottle; you’ll get two to three glasses out of the slightly larger 500 ml can. Boxed wine — which holds three liters of wine, or about four bottles worth — uses a vacuum-sealed bag to keep oxygen out, which means the wine stays fresh for up to a month after opening. And then there’s the Tetra Pak or carton, which we’ve seen on juice aisles for a while now, so it makes sense to use them for wine, as well. The 1-liter cartons hold about 1 1/3 bottles of wine.

Best of all, winemakers have begun putting some pretty good juice in these alternative containers — if you know where to look. So we swirled, sniffed and sipped our way through a bunch of boxed and canned options to find the best picnic pairings. You’ll find most of these at local supermarkets and wine shops.

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Summer Savings on Pinot Grigio

Buy 3 for the price of 2!

We are kicking the summer off with a big Sale on our Pinot Grigio!  Get 3 boxes of Boxx Cellars Pinot Grigio for the price of 2 – that is 33% off the regular price!  + $10 shipping  = $90 for 3 boxes of Pinot Grigio ($6.66 per 750 ml equivalent)

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Boxed wines: They’re better than you think

Boxx WinesFor some, the idea of tap wine can seem intriguing. For others, it is appalling. Regardless, it is a countertop fixture that fits both budget and quality. And really, what is so wrong with wine on tap in your home, camper, favorite restaurant or river trip?

Over the past few years, there has been a growing realization about and trend toward wine on tap. Many restaurants have opened up their by-the-glass programs to pouring keg wine, saving both time and money for restaurateurs, bartenders and wine producers. For bartenders, the time they save from having to pull corks on countless bottles during a rush can mean the difference between being in the weeds and keeping customers and wait staff satisfied.

While only a few years ago this idea seemed outrageous, it is now common practice and sought after by the restaurant industry. Not only is tap wine great for glass pours at your favorite restaurant, it is also an excellent concept for large parties, weddings and special events.

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Boxed wine for wine snobs

This Boston-based wine company thinks it’s about time you get over your boxed-wine shame.

“Bottles of wine stay good for only two days after opening — and you’re actually paying more for the shipping and packaging than the wine inside the bottle,” says Marian Leitner-Waldman, CEO of premium boxed wine start-up Archer Roose. “[These are] fundamentally the dynamics our company seeks to change.”

Recently rated a “Best Buy” by Wine Enthusiast, Archer Roose offers three boxed wine varieties from Chile: a Cabernet Sauvignon, a Sauvignon Blanc and a Carmenere.Archer Roose

“We have a cult following around our Carmenere,” Leitner-Waldman explains. “It’s kind of an esoteric grape. You don’t expect that.”

Archer Roose partners with high-end wineries, producing wines that would normally retail for $20 a bottle, but is able to deliver them to the consumer for $7 a bottle — in a box or a keg. Each three-liter box (equivalent to four bottles of wine) has a suggested retail price of $29.99.


Instead of bottling and packaging at the source in Chile, the company ships its three wine varieties in 24,000-liter flexitanks, which help cut its shipping costs by 70 percent. The wine is then shipped to New York Harbor and trucked upstate, where it is packaged and ready for distribution.

“Shipping in bulk and the packaging allows us to deliver such incredible savings to the consumer,” Leitner-Waldman tells CNBC.

Archer Roose wines also stay fresh up to six weeks after opening. This is because as the wine is dispensed, the bag inside the box collapses, limiting the wine’s contact with the air. The company claims its packaging is also environmentally friendly — generating 80 percent less landfill waste and a 60 percent smaller carbon footprint.

According to the National Association of American Wineries, the U.S. leads the world in wine consumption — with sales close to $35 billion each year. And it’s not just bottles: Nielsen reports wines in boxes and cartons of all sizes represent more than 8 percent of table wine store sales dollars today — and just under 20 percent of table wine volume.

Founded in 2014, Archer Roose is headquartered in Boston. Currently, its boxed wines are available for purchase in Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina and Virginia. The company intends to roll out to Georgia, South Carolina and Texas later this year.

It’s also getting ready to launch its first French wine — a rose from Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence – as well as a line of 375 ml cans carrying Sauvignon Blanc, rose and “Redsurrection.”

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Spring Specials

Spring has sprung!

Budbreak is in full swing in the vineyards!

This month I have our most popular box wine picnic dispenser on sale plus $10 flat shipping on orders of 3 boxes this week only.

Sauvignon BlancFrom the Tank Rose
Vine and Dine Bag

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March Madness Sale!

Buy 3 and get one FREE!

We are kicking March off with a big Sale!  Get 4 boxes of Boxx Cellars for the price of 3 – that is 25% off the regular price!  No brackets to follow just great wine with great discounts all month long.  Choose all Pinot Grigio, all Sangiovese or mixed 2 boxes of each.
2015 Pinot Grigio is now $29.99 per box or the equivalent of $7.50 per 750 ml
2014 Sangiovese is now $35.99 per box or the equivalent of $8.99 per 750 ml

Club members also recieve $10 shipping

Pinot Grigio (click to order)
$111.97 for 4 Boxes
($29.99 – $7.50 per 750 ml)

Mixed – 2 PG & 2 SG (click to order)
$131.97 for 4 Boxes
($32.99 – $8.25 per 750 ml)

Sangiovese  (click to order)
$143.97 for 4 Boxes
($35.99 – $8.99 per 750 ml)

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Maison Cubi is back in stock!

This was the highest rated wine by Reverse Wine Snob ever, and one of the reasons I sell box wines!

sauvignon blancMaison Cubi was founded by Philippe Mao and Gérald Stinner with a simple but challenging goal: ending the boxed wine stigma!  The wines come from independent French vineyards in Provence and Languedoc.

Abbaye St Eugenie in Languedoc
This ancient abbey and its vineyard were restored and enlarged by its owners Thibaut and Christine Cazalet since 1998, both young oenologists. Thibaut is the farmer and cultivates and keep 26 hectares of old vine stocks while Christine works at the cellar. Sainte Eugenie wines have character, as their winemakers and their soils: they associate human knowing and traditional cultivating methods.

“Domaine de la Castille” Provence
Independent wine-growing vineyard in Côtes de Provence. Ideally located in the sunny South East of France between Marseille and Saint-Tropez (Côte d’Azur). La Castille is a haven of peace in the heart of Provence, close to the coast, not far from the picturesque island of Porquerolles. The estate’s 18th century castle is a reminder that the 160 ha domain benefits from an enduring heritage from hundreds of years of wine-making, dating back as far as over two thousand years ago when the Romans set foot on the Côte d’Azur.

Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc 2015 from Domaine Grauzan in Languedoc. A very well balanced palate with lovely floral elements and light mineral flavors.


Viognier “Neptune” from Languedoc. A full palate with peach, mango flavors & a touch of lemon. A floral and aromatic wine that will pair beautifully with white meat, creamy sauces or even spicy dishes.


Syrah/Carignan 2015 from Abbaye St Eugenie in Languedoc. An intense nose of dark berries, supple palate and a very good overall balance.  10% Syrah 90% Carignan (70 to 100 years old)

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