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Snooth User: akops41

Ode to Broken Bottle of Canadian Wine

Posted by akops41, Apr 29, 2008.

As if stained clothing, a dripping suitcase, and money down the drain isn't enough, a broken bottle of souvenir/gift wine is never cool.

Bringing home wine presents is a common thing - we go to a foreign land (say Canada for example), we purchase wine for drinking at home upon returning from the foreign land, and we try our darnedest to pack the wine in such a way that checking the bag (since a wine bottle is way more than 3oz and the duty free selection is never any good) won't break the bottle. Sadly, its never a sure thing.

My previous mentioned boyfriend, one with good knowledge of my palate, brought me back wine presents in a similar fashion from a foreign land. (Canada) He returned with a Cabernet Franc and a Canadian Bordeaux-style blend from British Columbia packed in clothing, paperbags, and a cardboard bottle separator. He was so excited to give me the wine, but when he opened the bag to get them out, the telltale scent of Cabernet Franc wafted out, and some newly pinked undershirts were there. Disaster. Wine everywhere. Gift destroyed. Boyfriend depressed.

I said it to cheer him up, but it was really true. At least I got to smell it. The thought was there, and I saw the bottle's label so I knew it really was an un-exported British Columbian wine. A pity though really. It was thoughtful and smelled like it would have been tasty.

I think its now clear that the number 1 rule of packing wine in a suitcase is plastic bags. In the event of bottle breakage, at least there is a barrier between liquid and your white boating outfit from Berdorfs. Rule number 2 is padding. Clothes are nice, but so is packing material, bubble wrap, and/or poofy jackets.

Has this ever happened to you? Are you still cursing the ever-so careful luggage handlers at American Airlines?


Reply by Philip James, Apr 29, 2008.

Dan Petroski was telling me that he uses those styrofoam wine carriers and checks them separately. At least then if they break (unlikely, given that they are enclosed in a protective layer and its clear they are liquids, so there may be less manhandling) they dont spill inside your bag.

The fact that if they broke they'd leak all over the inside of the planes hold or inside the airport might make people more careful with them as they, or their friends, may be called in to do some clean up afterwards.

Reply by Mark Angelillo, Apr 29, 2008.

It wasn't even three years ago when I returned from Sonoma with a few bottles which I carried onto the plane. Now I don't even bother trying to bring wine on the plane at all. All the more reason to place a larger order online with my favorite store or winery.

Still, it's sad. Maybe I'll drive out to Long Island to satisfy my craving for "the haul".

Reply by oceank8, Apr 29, 2008.

Almost all the wineries I go to now sell a product that is bottle shaped bubble wrap. You just stick your bottle in and seal it. I always buy too much to make this cost effective, but if you are buying a few bottles, this seems the way to go!

Reply by John Andrews, Apr 29, 2008.

@oceank8 ... the product you are thinking of is called 'Wine Skin'

Most wineries do sell them along with shipping containers. Shipping containers are the best way to go as they are what most shipping companies use to transport wine. As Philip indicated these shipping containers can be used as checked luggage.

@akops41 - being Canadian, I'm curious to hear what BC wine you were supposed to get.

Reply by HotPotato, Jan 26, 2010.

Oh, I hope it wasn't the Tinhorn Creek Cab Franc... so, so good!

Reply by amour, Jan 27, 2010.

So sorry to hear!
Visit BC !...Solution?

There was a previous thread on this very topic.
Perhaps dmcker would recall and pull it up.
I do remember he made a valuable contribution
and suggested great solutions.
Thank you!

Reply by dmcker, Jan 27, 2010.

Here's that thread...

Reply by amour, Jan 27, 2010.

How very kind darling dmcker !!

Reply by zufrieden, Jan 27, 2010.

I know this is an old thread, but as a British Columbian, I empathize with your loss - depending on the winery. If your boyfriend gets out this way again (or you) try the Osoyoos Larose Bordeaux blend (2002 - if you can find it). This may have been one of the wines your boyfriend was lugging back. The Cab Franc could be from any number of decent producers - Tinhorn Creek being one of the more reliable. The winemaker in the latter instance is Sandra Oldfield - a native of California.

Reply by dirkwdeyoung, Feb 4, 2010.

Unfortunately, they don't allow carry on anymore, I once actually carried on 12 bottles. Now in my suitcase, the maximum I pack is 6. One also has to be worried about the weight limits. I always use up my socks for the first layer and then my t-shirts for the second and then my trousers for the third. Oh yes, but I buy some plastic wrap for starters. So far no broken bottles, but a large can of flageolets did burst, which is not as bad as Cabernet Franc.

Reply by zufrieden, Feb 5, 2010.

Not to make this Ode to the lengths taken by Shelley (I'm from out West, the source of the destroying and preserving Wind of the same name), I have to say that I no longer bother much about lugging bottles home by hand. The laws are just too absurd (I want the expensive stuff near at hand, naturally, NOT in stowage). Instead, I order them directly or simply drink them in the region or origin - depending on readiness etc.

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