This wine was a media sample from Cal Naturale
A few years ago before I had developed my passion for wine, I worked with a person who loved wine. He drank wine every evening, but he didn’t believe in drinking “good” wine. I don’t know if he was just cheap or if he preferred boxed wine. I won’t call the wine by name, but it was probably the first wine to come in a box. At that point in my life I failed to see how efficient boxed wines could be.
Then came the Red Truck Mini Barrel. I read an article in Food & Wine Magazine about how good these wines were and how the system kept the wine fresh for days. So the next time I went to our local Sam’s warehouse store, they had the Red Truck Mini Barrels and I just had to have one. For the grand price of $19.99 we got the equivalent of four (4) bottles of wine in a great recyclable plastic barrel. And the wine was good – as good as the bottled Red Truck I had tasted. I had some friends though who snubbed their nose at it.
Fast forward another 2-3 years and boxed wine is really in vogue and being written about by some of the best writers in the wine industry. One of the best boxed wines to come out of California is CalNaturale. I received this sample at the Wine Blogger’s Conference in Charlottesville, Virginia in July, 2011, which means I kept it cellared 10 months. This Cabernet Sauvignon is rich and full-bodied, inky black and jammy with a wonderfully long finish. The wine comes in a Tetra Pak which is similar to a milk carton, screw cap and all. This allows for easy resealing of the wine, but I couldn’t find anything that suggested how long the wine would keep once it had been opened. I kept mine for 3 days with no problem. Not sure what I expected when I first opened it, but what hit my glass was a pleasant surprise.
Boxed wines today are popular due to organic farming and wine production as well as saving the environment. If the quality is there, do we have to have the prestige of the bottle?
Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon Alcohol: 13.8%
To read more about CalNaturale and the Red Truck Mini Barrel