Thank you to Nuzy for reviewing and I added the photos, the product is such great value for money and I will be gifting it this year.
Anne Marie X
I love to try new wine, but although it is something that I greatly enjoy, I am very much an amateur. Over the years my palate has been educated by learning from wonderful sommeliers, wine tastings in Napa, Tuscany and Bordeaux, attending courses at Berry Bros and a fair amount of practice! With many establishments, like the fabulous Social Wine and Tapas, offering an extensive range of wine by the glass, it is easier to try fine wine without the investment of an expensive bottle. However, when it comes to buying wine to take to a dinner party, drink at home or to pair with food, unless you have a good wine merchant, you can often end up buying the same thing time and time again.
I was introduced to the idea of Drinks in Tube earlier this year and was initially a bit sceptical about it. French wine growers created the glass packaging (an oversized test tube) to host 100ml of wine to ease tasting and this concept has been developed further by the independent Hampshire based company, Drinks in Tube. I remained intrigued by the idea and with the holiday season approaching, I was also keen to see whether these would make good gifts.
One grey Friday morning, I was rewarded with a box containing four gift packs. I have to say that I had a mounting sense of excitement when I opened up the well-presented boxes that each contained a number of inviting glass tubes. The range starts with French Classics with a selection of white, rose and red wine from Burgundy, Bordeaux, the Rhone and Provence to the premium packs that have Grand and Premier Crus as well as a Sauternes. For the few extra pounds, I would recommend going for the premium packs (prices of the Classic and Elegant selection start at £24 to the Premium at £28 for five 100ml tubes)
I was particularly interested in the Grüner Veltliner selection from the estate of Austria’s award-winning producer Markus Huber as this is not a grape variety that I am familiar with. The family owned winery is over 200 years old and is a real find and from what I have since read and tasted this is really a wine to watch. With its aromatic fragrance it is perfect as an aperitif and is said that it may supplant Sauvignon Blanc in popularity. The white pepper and herbal notes typical of this grape would complement Asian spices and I will be buying the Single Estate, Traisental with its big flavours of peach and citrus.
The packs come with Tasting Notes that describe the characteristics of each wine, details of the producers and recommendations of what food it is best paired with. This is very helpful as you can make a note of what grape varietals and styles you like.
Some highlights, that I will be buying, include a Saint Emilion Grand Cru from Chateau Coutet with an elegant balance of fruit and spice; a bold Saint Joseph from Domaine Habrard made with 100% Syrah and a creamy Chablis Premier Cru ‘Montmains’ from Domaine du Chardonay that is perfect with fish and seafood.
In addition to the opportunity to taste new products, the packs would make great personal or corporate gifts. There is an element of surprise and novelty (without being gimmicky) coupled with quality wine that is appealing. The tubes would also work well to take on picnics or to have a fun tasting with friends.
I have yet to try the amber coloured tubes in the cognac selection but with a choice of a VS, VSOP and XO it would be a treat for a cognac lover. The range includes whisky and I have it on good authority that gin is on the cards, so I will look out that.
I recommend Drinks in Tube for a gift that will stand out and for a way to expand your horizon of wines and spirits. Well presented and packaged, it is certainly worth a try.
Drinks in Tube kindly supplied me with the gift packs but the opinions are my own. I would only recommend a product that I would buy myself and I have placed orders for several gift packs.
For details of what I sipped at Social Wine and Tapas read this post.
Nuzy Sayani is Catwalkschoolgates’ restaurant reviewer. Nuzy lives in Marylebone with her husband and eight year old son. She is a technology lawyer and loves the theatre, cinema, is an avid reader and likes nothing more than trying out restaurants. Nuzy will be sharing her dining experiences with us and would love to hear from you with your recommendations.