Last night we reviewed a boxed wine, so let’s crack into another box tonight. This one is produced by Bota Box, a brand that I’ve never reviewed on this site before. However, I have given their old vine zinfandel kudos in my column in Mutineer Magazine in the past.
There’s nothing too fancy about the Bota Box packaging, it’s a basic bag-in-box package. But I did notice that when opening this box, it was much easier than most boxed wines. If you’ve ever opened a boxed wine, you’re probably familiar with the perforated section of cardboard that you need to open to get the spigot out. Well, on most boxed wines, it’s nearly impossible to tear that section by hand, so you end up getting a knife and hoping that you don’t puncture the bag — or puncture yourself! But that wasn’t an issue at all with Bota Box.
The box itself is made of 100% post-consumer recycled paper, but that’s not all there is for you tree huggers to get excited about. The packaging weighs much less than bottles, which means less fuel is used in shipping it. If you’re looking for a wine with a low carbon footprint, this may be your pick.
OK, enough rambling about the packaging and let’s get to the juice. After all, who wants to buy a wine just for the box? Although I do know many people who’ve bought wine just because of the cool bottle it came in (points at self in embarrassment).
One thing I didn’t notice until I took a second look at the label is that this wine is from Lodi, California. That’s right folks, California has seen the success Argentina has had with malbec and they want a piece of that action. The last time I was out in California wine country I came across several vineyards that were experimenting with malbec and this is just one example.
This malbec is a dark red color, bordering on purple but it’s not as purple as many Argentine malbecs I’ve tasted. Deep mocha and blackberry aromas erupt from the nose of this wine, with additional layers of blueberry and spice. The palate is super-fruity — perhaps too fruit forward for some consumers but it’s good if you like that style. Plum and blackberry flavors hit the front of the palate with mocha coming in mid-palate. It’s a touch bitter on the finish, but not so much that it’s a turn off. The tannins are soft and the acidity is adequate. It’s a good malbec. And for the price, I’d say it’s a great malbec.
Wine: Bota Box
Price: $19.99 for 3 liters (equivalent to 4 bottles)
Find Bota Box Malbec with Snooth
Disclosure: This wine was received as a sample.