What more could wine consumers want these days? It seems the metropolis of wine accessories and accoutrements at one’s fingertips are busting at the seams already. What could the community of fine wine lovers still need?
FlyWithWine seems to putting that question back on the table by offering a portfolio of select products that seek to offer that little extra touch of convenience, elegance, and function top wine storage and transport. Their featured products are a wine suitcase, backpack, wine box carrier, wine glasses, wine glass travel case, and wine storage products. Today we road test the ready-to-serve backpack VinXplorer and wine storage WineHive modular wine rack.
WineHive – “Inspired by nature, WineHive is the modular honeycomb wine rack considered to be functional art for wine lovers.” The starter set provides you with 5 honeycombed chambers in sturdy but lightweight metal in silver grey and black. The chambers slide and lock into each other very easily and can be fastened together with discreet screws. From a design standpoint, it is indeed a respectable modern homage to the beehive. From a functional standpoint, who can argue with the brilliance of the honeycomb shape in optimizing use of space. The 6-sided components provide great range in utilizing spaces of all shapes and sizes. It’s a practical and handsome way to turn an underutilized shelf into wine storage. The silver-grey model in particular is striking enough to sit atop a counter (and is likely a great conversation starter). Very portable and light, the modular system lets you add and subtract as whimsically as the bees flutter. A+ / $75 for a 5-piece set [BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON]
VinXplorer Wine and Beverage Backpack – The world is increasingly on the go. And with a boost from post Covid-hibernation, many are finding a greater exhilaration from just getting out there. So how much grander can you make your grand adventure? How about ensuring your favorite wine is safely tucked away and ready to crack open — or even better ready to pour directly from the pack? That’s what the VinXplorer backpack, which comes with a dual wine bottle carrying case for your wines to nestle in safely, can offer inside its rather sleek, minimalist design appropriate for a business class traveler.
But really, let’s talk about the wine pouch and spigot system. Here’s a link to the video to show you how this works: Meet the VinXplorer – Wine and Beverage Backpack from FlyWithWine – YouTube. Essentially you are bagging your wine before you leave, courtesy of here is a 1.5 liter “bladder” into which you pour your beverage of choice (up to 2 bottles). You close the opening with a spigot, which protrudes from the base of the backpack and can be easily tucked away behind the flap. When the moment is right – perhaps an unexpected opening in the brush that reveals the setting sun – you simply drop the backpack down, pull the spigot and voila, release vino into the wine glass you happen to have with you at 5,000 feet altitude in the Rockies. (I have to admit, I wondered how they carefully stowed the wine glasses in the video… perhaps in their Wine Glass Carrier?)
I love the design, I love the quality of the construction. I love the brazenness of FlyWithWine’s proposal that we deserve our favorite pinot noir when we reach the opposite bank of our canoe trip. I did find the mechanism a little intimidating with how exacting the process needed to be to pour the wine into the bladder, and then to ensure you didn’t accidently pull the release cover of the spigot too hard to ensure and mess with the integrity of the seal. But with some more experience, I do think the occasional fill of wine in a backpack as I pop into my friend’s next backyard soiree might be rather fanciful and worth the gleeful reactions on display. The bladders are one-and-done, including the spigot, with 3-pack replacements available for sale separately. A / $200 for the backpack; $20 for 3-pack bladder replacements [BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON]
To be fair, FlyWithWine products are definitely not for the average wine consumer, but that is probably entirely their point. And if you have been reading with intense curiosity, these might be for you.