Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, but you can call me Vinny. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the fine points of etiquette to the science of winemaking. And don't worry, I'm no wine snob—you can also ask me those "dumb questions" you're too embarrased to ask your wine geek friends! I hope you find my answers educational, empowering and even amusing. And don't forget to check out my most asked questions and my full archives for all my Q&A classics.
Dear Dr. Vinny,
What's the difference between boxed and bottled wines?
—Robert K., Greenwood Village, Colo.
For some wines, the only difference is the packaging—the same wine can be put in either a bottle or a bag in a box. Other brands only focus on one container or another.
Boxed wine is a growing category for good reason: The wines can be as good as their bottled contemporaries, though they tend to be made in the ready-to-drink style. The bag-in-box wines aren’t great at preserving wines for long-term storage because they let oxygen in over time (in fact, many boxed wines have “best by” dates). Once opened, they will preserve a wine for a few weeks, which is great for folks who like to enjoy their wines a little bit at a time.
As an added bonus, boxed wines are usually made from recycled materials, and weighing less than glass, they can have a lighter impact on the environment.