Introducing Tubes, a New Single-Serve Wine System

Introducing Tubes, a New Single-Serve Wine System

Purchasing and opening a bottle of wine is a big commitment. With 5 or 6 glasses in a bottle that can easily cost hundreds of dollars, it’s easy to understand why the wine world is so intimidating to people. Bet wrong and you’re out a small fortune — and possibly wasting a whole lot of wine, too.

While devices like the Coravin and Vacu Vin have made it easier to save half-empty bottles of wine, they’re still not great options if you just want to sample something without committing to a whole bottle.

Enter Tubes, which hopes to solve a number of these problems — and expose the world to higher-end, rarer wines (and spirits) in a more affordable fashion.

Tubes is a technology, not a product you can buy, and to showcase its offerings the company recently sent a collection of products made using its tech. The idea is pretty simple: Wine is repackaged into 100ml tubes — more or less a single glass of wine, but easily shared between two people — with a container that includes some basic information about what’s in the glass. Vials are made of glass, with a sturdy metal screwcap, and the bases are flat so you can leave them standing upright — if you’re confident in your ability not to jostle the table.

Folks are using Tubes to put out tasting boxes — like Vivant‘s set of six Alsatian grand cru whites — many well-aged ($75), Catena Zapata’s malbec collection, or Vinebox‘s 12-night Advent calendar of interesting Spanish wines ($97, pictured). The Advent calendar idea is arguably the best one I’ve seen for the Tubes concept to date, as giving someone a full case of wine to consume over 12 weeks is a) costly, b) boozy, and c) ghastly expensive.

I tasted all of these wines (and more) and found them all to be well-preserved and worthwhile — the only challenge being that when you refrigerate whites, they tend to roll around in your fridge.

This isn’t the first time I’ve had wines served in test tubes — a few brands used to send out samples in a similar concept years ago — but this is the first time I’ve seen the concept commercialized on this scale. I love that high-end producers are using Tubes for their wares, giving consumers access to wines that would otherwise only be available by scouring wine shops and online stores, fingers invariably crossed.

Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.

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