Canada is a little late to jump on the canned wine trend, something that the United States and Australia have really pioneered over the last decade. The OG of Canadian canned wine is Origin from Between the Lines Winery in Niagara, which entered the market in 2016. Today, Between The Lines produces two different canned wines and is among just a handful of other producers making quality canned vino, which is shocking, when you consider the benefits.
Canned wine is more sustainable; aluminum cans are totally recyclable while some corks and labels used in glass bottles are not, not to mention they weigh less, therefore requiring less fuel to transport. They’re easier to pack, making them perfect for picnics, camping, hiking, festivals (not that anyone is going to a festival these days) or whatever other activity pairs well with wine on the go. And with COVID-19 changing the way in which we share wine with others, the single servings are ideal for socially-distanced gatherings or for drinking at home when you don’t want to open an entire bottle to drink.
While there may be some resistance from wine purists, it helps that respected winemakers like Jean Benoit of Benjamin Bridge, one of the finest producers of Canadian sparkling wine, are producing canned wine with stunning packaging, showing that there is exceptional wine available in this format.
2019 Benjamin Bridge Pet Nat, Gaspereau Valley, N.S. $7.99
The Benjamin Bridge Pet Nat is a phenomenon unto itself. The production of pet-nat (or pétillant naturel) wines requires the wine to go through both primary and secondary fermentation in one singular vessel, relying entirely on indigenous yeast found on the grapes themselves. The result is a beautifully golden, hazy, sparkling wine with notes of Corn Pops, fresh lemon and nectarine and just a hint of salt, with a ton of texture on the palate. Make sure to toss a couple of cans of this in your hiking pack and indulge at the top of your next summit.
2019 Benjamin Bridge Nova 7, Gaspereau Valley, N.S. $8.99
Benjamin Bridge has also canned its Nova 7, the highest selling wine in all of Nova Scotia, and loved by foodies and oenophiles across the country. Made from a blend of varietals, including the aromatic, Muscat Ottonel, the wine is vibrant and juicy with just a slight spritz. Notes of crab apple jelly and lychee play nicely with fresh pink grapefruit and tangerine zest. This would be great for a socially-distanced backyard soiree. Hand each of your guests a personalized cheese tray with some seasonal fruit and a can of this, and you’ll be the talk of your cohort.
N/V Lola Blush Sparkling Rose, Pelee Island, Lake Erie, ON. $5.45
Lola Sparkling Rose from Pelee Island is so pretty and totally drinkable. This pale pink sparkler made with Vidal and Chambourcin has a delicate fizz with notes of blood orange soda and crushed sweet pea petals. This would be perfect tucked into a picnic basket or served at a bridal shower, baby shower, heck, even a bachelor party. Who doesn’t want their own can of off-dry pink bubbles, right?
N/V Merlot, Castoro de Oro, Osoyoos, B.C. $8.99
Castoro de Oro, the newest Canadian winery to produce wine in a can, has taken its award winning merlot and popped it into a convenient 250-mLcontainer. The wine is true to the varietal with notes of bitter dark chocolate and blueberries dusted in icing sugar. For all you campers out there who have grown out of (or just grown tired of) drinking yukaflux, this is for you.