Top-Rated Pop-Tops: 15 Recommended Wines in Cans

The number and quality of whites, reds and rosés in cans is on the rise. From California and Washington to Argentina and France, these cans deliver more than just value

Top-Rated Pop-Tops: 15 Recommended Wines in Cans
Sans Wine Co. sources grapes exclusively from organic vineyards for its minimal-intervention wines. (Courtesy of Sans Wine Co.)
Aug 3, 2020

Popping the tab on a can of wine has never tasted so good. A growing number of noteworthy vintners are packaging their wines in aluminum, and in some cases ditching bottles completely. That means consumers can find more wine styles and grape varieties in cans than ever before. This week, we've selected more than a dozen of the highest-rated canned wines from our recent blind tastings.


Canned wine sales continue to skyrocket, with no ceiling in sight. Read our latest news story on the hottest trend in wine packaging.


The quality of canned wines has seriously improved over the past few years. Case in point: Sans Wine Co.'s mouthwatering 2018 Sauvignon Blanc, packed with lemon, lime and tangerine flavors. Husband-and wife owners Jake Stover and Gina Schober tapped the Finley Road Vineyard in California’s Lake County, and aged the wine in stainless steel to keep its flavors fresh and vibrant. Larkin is another Golden State winery that's been elevating canned wines. Founder and winemaker Sean Larkin, who left a career in the sheet metal business to pursue wine, has produced two spotlighted whites this week: his rich 2018 Tin Knocker Sauvignon Blanc from Napa Valley, and his smooth and succulent 2019 Larkan white.

For fans of rosé, Amble+Chase's Coteaux d'Aix-en-Provence 2018 is a delicate version offering melon, citrus zest and white cherry flavors. Sparkling canned wines are represented here as well: From Washington's Goose Ridge winery comes the Cascadian Outfitters label and its easygoing, fruit-forward Columbia Valley sparkling rosé.

Top-Scoring Recent Canned Wine Releases

The wines below were reviewed blind in Wine Spectator's Napa and New York offices, decanted into sterile glass bottles to disguise their original packaging and tasted alongside wines bottled in glass.


LARKIN

Sauvignon Blanc Napa Valley Tin Knocker 2018

Score: 89 | $12/375ml

WS review: Succulent lemon curd, candied orange zest and subtle Key lime pie notes start off rich and fleshy, but a smooth thread of acidity weaves in and out, leading to a fresh finish. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 1,000 cases made.—MaryAnn Worobiec


SANS WINE CO.

Sauvignon Blanc Lake County Finley Road Vineyard 2018

Score: 89 | $10/375ml

WS review: Intense, with a strong note of lemongrass to the bright, mouthwatering citrus flavors, led by Meyer lemon, lime and tangerine notes. A minerally detail of crushed stone lingers on the finish. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 400 cases made.—M.W.


BROC CELLARS

Love Red North Coast 2019

Score: 87 | $10/375ml

WS review: Firm and juicy pomegranate, blood orange and wild strawberry flavors are fresh and focused. Black tea, dried rose petal and red licorice notes linger. Carignane, Valdiguié and Syrah. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 990 cases made.—M.W.


LARKIN

Larkan White Napa Valley 2019

Score: 87 | $12/375ml

WS review: Ripe melon, peach and citrus flavors are smooth and succulent, with a touch of tangerine and soft acidity. Sauvignon Blanc. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 1,500 cases made.—M.W.


SANS WINE CO.

Riesling Rutherford McGill Vineyard 2019

Score: 87 | $15/375ml

WS review: Features ripe melon, peach and apricot notes, showing off hints of candied ginger, spice and dried flowers on the finish, with moderate acidity. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 200 cases made.—M.W.


Canned wines and cheese
For West + Wilder, canning wines is part of a sustainability effort that also happens to produce easy-to-open pairings for cheese plates. (Kim Carroll Photography)

WEST + WILDER

Pinot Noir Russian River Valley NV

Score: 87 | $NA/250ml

WS review: The dried cherry and berry flavors are firm, with notes of hot stone and underbrush that linger on the juicy finish. Sold as a three-pack of 250ml cans for $17. Drink now. 350 cases made.—Kim Marcus


WEST + WILDER

White American NV

Score: 87 | $NA/250ml

WS review: Distinct and aromatic, with honeysuckle overtones to the melon, peach and lemon curd flavors, set on a smooth, succulent frame. Moderate acidity keeps the flavors fresh. Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Viognier, Muscat and Chardonnay. Sold as a three-pack of 250ml cans for $17. Drink now. 2,250 cases made.—M.W.


BROC CELLARS

Love White California 2018

Score: 86 | $10/375ml

WS review: The peach, pear and tangy lemon flavors show hints of fresh herbs, honey and yellow apple, with soft acidity. Marsanne, Picpoul, Roussanne and Grenache Blanc. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 600 cases made.—M.W.


CASCADIAN OUTFITTERS

Rosé Sparkling Columbia Valley NV

Score: 86 | $5/375ml

WS review: A fruit-forward quaff, with watermelon and strawberry flavors. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 5,000 cases made.—Tim Fish


FERDINAND

Albariño California 2019

Score: 86 | $9/375ml

WS review: Fresh, offering a lean yet mouthwatering mix of lime skin, lemon and green apple flavors, with a subtle floral aroma on the finish. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 418 cases made.—M.W.


MANCAN

Red American NV

Score: 86 | $5/375ml

WS review: Firm, with a hint of black licorice to the dried blackberry and roasted plum flavors. The spicy finish features baker's chocolate accents. Merlot and Zinfandel. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 10,000 cases made.—K.M.


MANCAN

White American NV

Score: 86 | $5/375ml

WS review: Soft and smooth, with focus to the ripe peach, vanilla bean and dried apricot flavors. Shows hints of spice and dried flowers on the finish, accented by fresh acidity. Chardonnay and Viognier. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 10,000 cases made.—M.W.


Food, cans of wine and other items laid out for a picnic
Canned rosé brand Amble+Chase is named for the "ambling" vintners do during their vineyards' growing season, and the "chase" that starts during harvest. (Courtesy of Amble+Chase)

AMBLE+CHASE

Coteaux d'Aix-en-Provence Rosé 2018

Score: 85 | $NA/250ml

WS review: Melon, lemon zest and white cherry flavors show a salty undertone in this delicate rosé, with herb details on the finish. Grenache, Cinsault and Syrah. Sold as a four-pack of 250ml cans for $20. Drink now. 12,600 cases made, 12,600 cases imported.—Gillian Sciaretta


14 HANDS

Hot to Trot Red Columbia Valley NV

Score: 84 | $6/375ml

WS review: Soft and fruit-forward, with cherry and toasted spice flavors. Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, Petite Sirah, Cabernet Franc, Mourvèdre, Pinot Noir and Sangiovese. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 13,900 cases made.—T.F.


VAMOS! VINO

Malbec Argentina NV

Score: 84 | $8/375ml

WS review: Medium-bodied, with light balsam accents to the red berry and dried cherry flavors. Short finish. Sold as a 375ml can. Drink now. 416 cases made, 416 cases imported.—K.M.

Tasting Reports Red Wines Rosé White Wines Cans Natural Wine Values Chardonnay Pinot Noir Sauvignon Blanc California Sonoma

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