In some hands the opening of a bottle of wine can vie with the Japanese Tea Ceremony for most arcane beverage ritual, in others it can be as perfunctory as twisting off a screw-cap—of course, neither protocol is indicative of the quality of the wine in the bottle.  Few of us when we get home from work have the kid-gloved butler/sommelier on hand to decant, then confidently yet oh-so discreetly deliver the exquisitely cellared vintage into the appointed crystal receptacle (aka glass).  No ,well, here at Locals at least, most of us get home, consider what’ll go well with dinner and crack it open while prep commences.  

As we all know, many of Fred and Jamie Petersen’s wines are made to be enjoyed with everyday food, be it a picnic lunch, pizza, or a weeknight dinner—and this is where the box wine concept comes into its own.  “We got interested in it about eight years ago”, Fred says,  “we were in France for a few weeks and Jamie commented that there you can buy decent wine in boxes”.  When the bag is filled with wine any air inside is replaced with nitrogen and when you pour from the spout the bag collapses around the remaining wine and it does not oxidize as it would in a bottle.  “Assuming you keep the box in a cool place–preferably IN the refrigerator, not on top of it”, says Fred, “you can extend the life of the wine for up to two months”.

Box wine 2In Australia where the concept was invented almost fifty years ago, boxed wines account for almost 50% of total market share, and in France and the rest of Europe it’s up at around 30%.  If you know what you like when you get home, and you like it good and often (they’re great for picnics, camping, kayaking, etc.), just make an end run around Jeeves and  tap into a three liter (that’s four bottles!) box of Peterson Winery’s ever popular Petite Sirah/Syrah blend “Mendo Blendo”.