Why do we assume that quality wine comes in smooth glass bottles, adorned with cursive lettering and golden edges? And why do we continuously buy the pretty bottles, only to put it in the recycling bag? What if, and this is a real shocker, you could still get the same quality wine you crave (and better!) but in an eco-friendly box? Ladies and gentlemen, meet Ben Wren Wine.
I must admit off the bat, I’m a sucker for a pretty bottle. Put in a cork wrapped in a wax seal and I’m in heaven. A catchy design and aesthetically pleasing fonts on the label? I’ll take five! But the novelty of the bottle wears off sooner than you can finish your first glass. Sadly, a pretty bottle has naïvely, in my mind at least, always been synonymous with premium quality wine.
And then I met Ben. He came to deliver two boxes of wine to my office on a random week-day morning whilst I was chomping on the bit for my next blog post. What a champ. I immediately recognised the bold, bright branding and remembered thinking it was actually pretty cool, but I had serious reservations about the content. I mean, it’s in a box, after all.
But I simply could not say no. Because, one – I was genuinely very curious about the box wine concept and contents, and two – Ben has a very cute dog that makes his appearance on social media every now and again. And I’m not going to be the person who disappoints the dog. So – home I went with my two boxes of wine under my arms, to many people’s surprise and wide eyes.
The Ben Wren Wine Co. was created in the belief that you don’t need fancy bottles or foiled labels to tell if a wine is good or not. Not when your taste buds are quite capable of knowing the difference.
Sourced from respected estates within the Cape’s prolific wine producing region, the wine in the box is exactly the same as the wine in their bottle. Same vineyards. Same grapes. Same wine master. Same oak barrels.
It costs a whole lot less to put wine in a box. So they can afford to look around for premium quality wine. And charge you less for it. It’s the very definition of a win/win (Ben Wren website).
The pros, because there aren’t any cons!
Settling down on my couch one evening with my first ever chilled glass of Ben Wren Sauvignon Blanc, I started mentally listing the advantages of wine-in-a-box. How would I, The Little Hedonist, personally benefit from Ben Wren? And why would I tell you, the consumer, to purchase it?
Once I started, it just kept on coming. Plus there seemed to be a big hole in my glass whilst I pondered this question…
- For starters, it carries much, much easier than a shopping bag full of clanking bottles when you go somewhere.
- It stacks much better in the car or cupboard, too. Space saver deluxe.
- It’s a great jumbo size, which makes me, and my guests, ridiculously happy.
- You can take it to concerts, beaches and picnic areas that doesn’t allow any glass.
- No risk of breakage. Or leakage. At all.
- You never have to worry again about forgetting to pack the stupid corkscrew.
- With a little built-in cubbyhole for a freezer block, its pretty much self-sufficient and can chill quite nicely whilst you figure out your social calendar.
- It’s totally a conversation starter, which has oodles of marketing potential.
- It takes the decision-making process out of your hands and right into your fridge with a lovely three liter capacity and great left-over potential for up to three weeks.
- It’s functional, practical and affordable. Just how I like things to be.
- All things considered, it’s more environmentally friendly than glass.
- It has a 50% smaller carbon footprint than bottles.
The part I probably should’ve mentioned first, is that it’s ridiculously good wine. That in itself is enough reason.
I felt that my discovery of Ben Wren Wine called for a little celebration. And what better way to celebrate than with a pick-a-mix meal of Mexican chicken nachos. The Ben Wren Sauvignon Blanc came to the party in more ways than one – it danced with the creamy guacamole, it tango’d with the crispy, herby nacho chips, it bopped with the lemony chicken and went to town on the tomato, onion and coriander salsa. Wow, what a feast!
If you know a little bit about me, you’ll know that I’m not a massive Sauvignon Blanc fan. In fact, I’m still searching for “the one.” In the same breath, I might have a little (okay, a massive!) crush on this one. It’s a food-friendly wine without any of the box assumptions attached to it. In fact, it’s a deliciously complex and layered wine beneath the initial fresh and fruity aromas with hints of warm wood and a tangy acidity on the palate. This is not your average Joe – this is the Zen of Ben.
I must admit, I’m saving the Ben Wren red wine for a mid-winter soirée. I’ve been mentally planning just the right moment to share this ruby jewel with friends. Or not. I’m still deciding if I’ll be sharing. Either way, I’ll be sure to share my thoughts with you (at least!) on this one soon!
Ben Wren is making us stop and re-think things. It’s making us question our old school thought patterns when it comes to quality wine and forces us to engage with contemporary, forward-thinking wine concepts. It’s pushing us to think inside of the box.
I’m extremely happy to have met Ben Wren Wine. I’m pleasantly surprised and a huge fan. I will now, from this day forward, save a Ben Wren Wine sized space on my second fridge shelf, reserved for my new favourite after work (or anytime!) indulgence.
Second photographer and photo credit: The Tall Hedonist, aka Timothy P. Gibson
Disclaimer: I was given this product(s) as part of a press drop in exchange for my honest and truthful opinion and review thereof. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are solely those of The Little Hedonist, given in good faith and in no way influenced by the company or its affiliates. All images, unless otherwise stated/credited, are also my own.