Hoping to take advantage of the convenience offered by ready-to-drink beverages, more and more winemakers are breaking tradition and are beginning to offer single-serve wines in cans. While this may offend purists, VinePair happily discovered this summer that canned wines can actually be delicious.
To help sort out the contenders from the pretenders, VinePair turned to wine professionals around the United States and beyond to discover which canned wines currently top their lists. From a sparkling red influenced by the southern Rhône, to wines that pair perfectly with a Thanksgiving spread, keep reading for convenient suggestions that any vino lover can appreciate.
The Best Canned Wines Recommended by Sommeliers
- Underwood Rosé Bubbles
- Old Westminster Winery Skin Contact Piquette
- Sprezza Spritzes
- VINNY Blanc
- Spier Rosé
- Two Shepherds “Bucking Luna” Sparkling Cinsault
- Broc Cellars Love Series
- RAMONA Dry Grapefruit
- Sans Wine Company’s Carbonic Carignan 2019
- Bridge Lane White Merlot
- Belly Dragger Chardonnay
- Lubanzi Wines
Keep reading for details about all of the recommended cans!
“DEFINITELY Underwood Rosé Bubbles. It’s a joyous strawberry-and-citrus-blossom-flavored wine that’s oh so delicious with fresh salmon and rotisserie chicken.” —Rob Wecker, Master Sommelier and Owner, Bushel and a Peck Kitchen & Bar, Clarksville, Md.
“Old Westminster Winery Skin Contact Piquette.” —Damien del Rio, Owner, Sauced, Brooklyn
“My current favorite canned wine is actually a spritz. Sprezza makes both a Bianco and a Rosso version of this sophisticated refresher, mixing the venerable Mancino vermouths and local Seattle favorite Scrappy’s Bitters with soda to keep it light. They are delicious and complex, with a pleasant bitterness on the finish.” —Alexandra Stang, Beverage Director, Brendan McGill’s Hitchcock Restaurant Group, Seattle
“I have been on a VINNY Blanc kick lately as my go-to canned wine. There are a lot of great options out there in cans right now, but this blend of Grüner Veltliner and Riesling from the Finger Lakes by Thomas Pastuszak is a home run. Its fresh and vibrant fruit with a hint of carbonation makes it great on its own or in a spritz with a twist.” —Matthew Pridgen, Wine Director, Underbelly Hospitality, Houston
“Nomadica. Unlike some canned wines on the market, these are not just Central Valley plonk wines going into a can with a snazzy label slapped on the front. Curated by sommelier Kristen Olszewski, Nomadica only works with trusted growers, and sources grapes from a number of cool-climate, sustainably farmed vineyards along California’s North Coast. They are light, fresh, and complex, and great for a picnic or afternoon on the porch.” —Andrew Pattison, Wine Director, Sushi Note, Sherman Oaks, Calif.
“It has got to be Spier Rosé 2020. This gem of a winery in Stellenbosch is one of the oldest in South Africa, with a history dating back to 1692. Advances in canning technology have provided the market with early drinking options that are not only light and easy to carry about, but staples for many who do not have the luxuries of climate-controlled cellars. This particular rosé has an enormous appeal, mainly because of its freshness and berry flavors that will work for solo drinking or [with] many light dish accompaniments.” —Lloyd Jusa, Head Sommelier and Wine Director, Saxon Hotel, Johannesburg, South Africa
“Two Shepherds ‘Bucking Luna’ Sparkling Cinsault. It’s the most fun can of wine to enjoy, named after the baby donkey Luna, born four days before shelter-in-place orders went into effect.” —Jordon Sipperley, Wine Director, Tidbits by Dialogue, Santa Monica, Calif.
“I love anything from Broc Cellars. The winemaker, Chris Brockway, recently started canning his Love series. All of his wines are made using spontaneous fermentation, a process that means they only use native yeasts and bacteria that exist on the grapes in order to make wine.” —Brandi Carter, Beverage Director and Sommelier, Elvie’s, Jackson, Miss.
“I love RAMONA because it’s so refreshing, the perfect size, and with so many flavors to choose from, it suits every mood or occasion. I also love that it combines wine with organic fruit juice, which keeps the ABV low, so you can easily enjoy a few guilt-free! It’s hard to pick a favorite, but I’ve been crushing hard on the Dry Grapefruit lately.” —Cappie Peete, Beverage Director, AC Restaurants, Raleigh, N.C.
“‘Right now’ is accurate, because it literally changes every day. Today, it’s Sans Wine Company’s Carbonic Carignan 2019. Yesterday, it was Companion Wine Company’s Riesling 2018. —Jeremy Allen, Beverage Director, Little Dom’s & MiniBar Hollywood, Los Angeles
“Bridge Lane White Merlot from Long Island, N.Y.! What makes their canned wine selection so special is the attention to detail and selection of the lining of the can. Not many realize how important that is to the wine and to the taste and the longevity! And who’s not intrigued by white Merlot?” —Jessica Green, Sommelier and Owner, Down the Rabbit Hole Wine Boutique, Sayville, N.Y.
“Belly Dragger Chardonnay: Everyone knows that we are partial to all things pig, so this label immediately caught our eye. It’s a delicious, rich, structured California Chardonnay, and that just seals the deal for us! We also love their motto: ‘To make wine accessible and fun … for special occasions – like daytime.’” —Jana Rogers, Sommelier, Mulvaney’s B&L Restaurant, Sacramento, Calif.
“Right now, my favorite canned wine is from Lubanzi Wines. They are a South African wine company out of the Swartland, and one of the things they do is to give back to the families of color that work on South African wine farms. Started by two Americans, Walker Brown and Charles Brain, who fell in love with South Africa as exchange students, they enlisted the help of the brilliant Trizanne Barnard as winemaker and Bruce Jack as advisor. They have a Rhône-style Red Blend and a Chenin Blanc in a can, and just recently released a fabulous rosé. The wine does not taste like metal, and the branding is not just fun, the wines are really good. I am excited to see what else South Africa can produce and bring into the U.S. market — because right now, Lubanzi’s quality in that can far, far outperforms what I have tasted from other canned wines in the U.S.” —Suzaan Hauptfleisch, Sommelier and Owner, Kaia Wine Bar, NYC
Published: November 18, 2020