Don’t mind me. I’m just sitting here by my pool. Drinking wine. From a can.
This concept isn’t new to me, as I routinely welcome Tucson’s warmer months with a canned sparkling wine made by Arizona’s Dos Cabezas WineWorks. It’s an annual tradition that reminds me that spring has sprung and that a hot summer is on the horizon.
Now, thanks to Aridus Wine Company, I can enjoy quality wines poolside all summer long without the attendant anxiety of attempting to keep glass bottles safely perched by the deep end.
Aridus is the latest Arizona winery to join the canning craze, and my recent conversation with winemaker Lisa Strid revealed that the craze is about more than just convenience.
“It’s true that canned wines are portable and allow you to enjoy a glass of wine in different settings than you otherwise would, like by your pool or on a hike,” said Strid, winemaker at Aridus Wine Company, 145 N. Railview Ave. in Willcox. “But this was really about introducing something refreshing and fun, particularly to the people who stick it out here during Arizona’s summers.”
Strid personally put her canned wine to the test once the packaging process was completed, setting out on a hike to assess the cans’ utility.
“Here in Willcox, we’re blessed to be at a high elevation and close to mountain streams, and I discovered on my hike that sitting in a stream drinking wine from a can was really pleasant,” she said. “I find it to be an enjoyable experience to drink out of a can, whether it’s wine, beer, or soda, partly because you can feel how cold it is in your hand.”
As part of its Tank Series, Aridus launched three canned wines this summer that Strid prefers “right out of the refrigerator” cold.
The Rose, which is made from 100 percent Zinfandel, hits the midpoint on the dry-sweet spectrum.
“We did a light maceration to get a little bit of color in,” said Strid, “and this one has notes of juicy watermelon and strawberry candy.”
If she’s poolside, she’d pair the Rose with a cold pasta salad.
The White Blend, which brings together Malvasia Bianca and Picpoul Blanc grapes, is just a bit sweeter than the Rose.
“I love the aromas of Malvasia, and the Picpoul adds some tropical character and a bit of acid,” she said. “It’s floral with a delicate ginger-like sweetness.”
Her perfect poolside pairing for the White Blend is a medley of fresh melons.
The third wine in Aridus’ can portfolio is a Viognier, which lives up to the “arid” in the Aridus name because of its dryness.
“This one is completely dry, with a little less alcohol than our standard Viognier, giving it a fresh, crisp, and clean profile,” she said.
If she’s sipping the canned Viognier by the pool, and there happens to be a grill nearby, she thinks grilled trout would crush it as a pairing.
These wines can be purchased at the Aridus tasting room in Willcox. For those of us who’d rather not surrender our pool chairs, Aridus will be pleased to bring these wines directly to your front door, or perhaps even to your pool, with no delivery charge. All that’s required is a minimum purchase of six cans, at a single can cost of $7. Arrangements can be made by calling (520) 766-2926 or visiting www.ariduswineco.com.
I’ll see you at the pool – sipping and swimming responsibly, of course.
Contact Matt Russell, whose day job is CEO of Russell Public Communications, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Russell is also the publisher of OnTheMenuLive.com as well as the host of the Friday Weekend Watch segment on the “Buckmaster Show” on KVOI 1030 AM.