I stumbled across an article the other day about the implementation of “wine vending machines” in restaurants. At first, this may sound a bit crass. But these state-of-the-art machines allow patrons to enjoy a glass of wine that has been preserved in its original, just-opened condition for up to 30 days.
Restaurant owners and wine drinkers both can rejoice with the implementation of these “vending machines’. It allows wine lovers to enjoy a glass of a more expensive vintage, as opposed having to purchase the entire bottle. At the same time, restaurants are able to manage the inventories of their high-end wines while reducing waste. Unfortunately, these machines are likely to cost the restaurant upwards of $5,000.
Beer is no longer alone as an option for kegged alcohol as another innovation in wine drinking is evolving out of California restaurants. Wine on tap is not a new concept but it has been both implemented and rejected in the US in the 70s and 80s. However, wine kegs have made a comeback are beginning to open up a new market for wineries and putting a new spin in the wine industry.
Kegged wine has numerous advantages including being more environmentally conscious with the use of less materials, keeping wine tasting the way it was intended to taste, and being a less expensive alternative to bottling. That aside, the question remains is whether or not the average wine drinker can mentally overcome the stigma attached to drinking wine from a keg rather than the bottle.
Personally, whether my glass of chardonnay comes from a “vending machine” or a keg, as long as it’s chilled and tastes fresh, I’m a happy oenophile. Cheers!