Lagers in a keg? Absolutely fine. Beer in a keg? sounds good to me. However how would you feel if you’d just bought a Pinot Noir from Burgundy at your favourite restaurant and you saw your waiter pouring it from a keg? I imagine a few people won’t be too happy with that, even if the wine tasted exactly the same. The romance of popping the cork on an expensive bottle would be lost, but would that deter you?
According to the LA Times, that may soon become a very real possibility:
A growing number of boutique wineries are putting their Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Rhone-style reds in kegs.
Why would wineries do this? Quite simply due to cost. Placing your wine in kegs instead of bottles would save a considerable amount of money when it comes to bottling, labelling and shipping. For restaurants it also eliminated possible waste. If someone orders a large glass of a certain wine, the bottle is opened. However if no other customers ordered that wine in the 24 hour period afterwards, the wine would need to be disposed of, what a waste! The accepted theory is, if the cost of production is lower, the savings can be passed on to the customer, making drinks in restaurants cheaper, without sacrificing the quality.
At the moment, this seems to be mainly restricted to American bars and restaurants. However London based Vinoteca have brought the innovative method to England. Last year Vinoteca enjoyed a lot of success with Prosecco on tap, this year they are trying their hand at Riesling, and it seems to be going down a treat according to owner Charlie Young:
“It’s going off like a frog in a sock and is doing even better than we expected it to,” Young told the drinks business.
“We wanted it to be something that was distinctly Riesling but could be for any occasion and it’s clear people are happy chugging it as a hot day thirst-quencher or drinking it as an accompaniment to lots of summery dishes.
“It helped that the staff got behind it straight away,” he added.
Some say the wine would not be affected by being held in a keg, some disagree. What do you think?