Savoring One-Liter Wines

Savoring One-Liter Wines

Have you ever noticed that the last sips of wine in the bottle usually taste the best? And that the bottle always seems to run out just one glass too early? Today, I offer you one solution to both of these problems: the one-liter bottle of wine. That’s 33% more juice, often at no extra cost.

What You Need to Know

Now beware: not all big bottle juice is created equally. The quality of wine bottled in magnum size (1.5L) is trickier to assess than with the 1L size. Some high-end producers offer their wine in magnum format because collectors prefer it for gradual aging purposes; but ironically, the most affordable, commercial, big-brand juice is also bottled in this same format (the ones you see stacked at your local wine shop). Nine times out of ten, wines bottled in 1L size sit qualitatively somewhere in between, and can not only be taken seriously, but are meant to be consumed young.

Liters Are the Leaders

The trend towards the 1-liter bottlings began not long ago, with some German and Austrian producers. The wines are often entry-level, but are of excellent quality from compelling producers. These larger bottles also tend to have alternative closures, like screw caps, or even pop tops (which leads to double confusion about quality level), and their producers may be viewed as especially innovative in two ways: They promote alternatives to cork to insure the final product is sound, and they promote green practices because there’s less packaging needed for more wine.

Of the many quality wines now available in one-liter format, these are some favorites, which also happen to be fairly easy to track down:

  • Hofer Gruner Veltliner '09 1-Liter, Austria, $14
  • Darting Riesling Kabinett '09 1-Liter, Germany, $15
  • Ecker Zweigelt '08 1-Liter, Austria, $9
  • Thorn-Clarke Shiraz Terra Barossa '08 1-Liter, Australia, $15
  • Sherman & Hooker's Shebang! 1-Liter, California, $15

 

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