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Have you ever stumbled upon a premise for something — maybe it’s a book, or a business — and thought: Damn. They stole my idea. That’s exactly how I felt when I heard about Wander + Ivy, a company that sells elegantly packaged single servings of wine sourced from vineyards around the world, including California, France, Spain, and Italy. Happily, this realization was accompanied by pure elation and no hint of jealousy. I, for one, don’t have the wherewithal to start my own direct-to-consumer wine company — but I sure am happy someone else did.
I’m a big wine person — it’s essentially the only type of alcohol I actually enjoy, and always have — but I’m not a big drinker, quantity-wise. In a single sitting, my max is two-and-a-half glasses before I need to tap out. I also live alone, and my boyfriend’s preferences for alcohol are opposite to mine — he won’t touch wine, the same way I won’t touch hard alcohol. Altogether, that means I end up dumping about 50% of a bottle of wine 99% of the time. I don’t even want to think about how much money I’ve wasted on unconsumed alcohol over the past decade.
My predicament is precisely where Wander + Ivy founder Dana Spaulding found herself before she launched the company in 2017. Like me, Spaulding is a wine drinker (though, unlike me, she’s a certified level 2 sommelier), and her husband is a whiskey drinker. She envied his ability to enjoy a single glass at a time, without wasting the rest of the bottle.
Problem, meet solution.
What’s On Offer
Wander + Ivy offers single-serve whites, reds, and a rosé, all packaged in beautiful, 6.3-ounce glass bottles (that’s about one-quarter of the size of a bottle of wine). Wines are sold in boxes of eight, 12, 16, or 24 bottles, starting at just under $64. Alternatively, you can get a multipack of varietals sold in boxes of eight or 24 bottles. Either way, it’ll even out to about $8 per glass. A solid Happy Hour deal, in other terms. Right now, you can save 15% off with the promo code ZOE15.
As any good wine business should, Wander + Ivy takes pride in the quality of its wines. They’re all sourced from award-winning, family-owned vineyards and made with sustainably grown, CCOF-certified organic grapes, meaning they’re grown, harvested, and processed without the use of harsh pesticides, and they contain zero added sugar. As an added incentive, the company donates 1% of its earnings to charitable donations.
I tried the box of eight bottles of mixed 2020 varietals: Two bottles each of their California Chardonnay, French rosé, and Italian white wine, plus one bottle of their California Cabernet Sauvignon and one red wine blend from Valencia, Spain.
Besides the pleasantly hefty glass construction and graceful cylindrical shape, I was struck by each bottle’s beautifully designed labels. As a playful touch, each label features an animal that represents the region in which the wine was made, like a bear (aka California’s State Animal) for the Chardonnay, and a wolf representing the Italian white wine blend, which my inner mythology nerd would like to believe is a reference to the Ancient Roman Remus and Romulus story.
On the back of the label, you’ll also find a lovely, easy-to-understand description of the wine’s palate, where the grapes were grown, and the ABV. Though you can find even more information on the brand’s website, including the exact varietal or grape blend and suggested food pairings. The bottles are also fitted with an airtight plastic seal to maintain freshness, and the opening is designed to prevent dripping when you pour.
So — How Does The Wine Taste?
I was happy to discover that Wander + Ivy’s wines are eminently drinkable, and the quality is the same that I’d expect when I order a glass of wine at a restaurant.
I’m partial to the red blend — specifically, a blend of 55% Bobal and 45% Merlot — for its smooth, slightly spicy palate that paired just as well with my red-sauce pasta dinner as it did the salted-almond dark chocolate I had for dessert. With its sweet, ever-so-slightly buttery notes, the white wine, a Pinot Bianco, complements the lighter meals I’ve been enjoying since the weather has warmed up, like leafy green salads and vegetable sushi. But it’ll stand up to heartier meals, too; though I don’t eat meat or fish, I can imagine it complementing either quite well.
And when the temperature hit 80 degrees in New York, I cracked open all the windows in my apartment and made a beeline for the rosé, which comprises 70% Grenache, 20% Cinsault, and 10% Syrah. It’s fruity and slightly floral, exactly the after-work drink I craved on a warm spring evening.
Should You Try Wander + Ivy’s Wines?
Wander + Ivy has solved a decade-old problem for me — quite chicly, no less. If you’re also a one-to-two-glass-at-a-time person, you’ll be just as pleased with the quality, value, and aesthetic experience you’ll get from the brand. But even if you’re not a wine drinker yourself, a box would make a thoughtful gift for the oenophile in your life.
If you want to try it out for yourself — or for your wine-drinking loved one — click the link below and use the promo code ZOE15 at check out enjoy a 15% discount off your choice of Wander + Ivy wines.
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