Instant wine? Just add water!
While much of what’s best about wine stems from centuries of tradition, there’s also a lot about the industry which rides on the cusp of the latest technology. New discoveries and techniques are constantly changing the way we appreciate our wine.
Sometimes, the embrace of modern science can have enormous benefits. For example, during the devastating 19th century “phylloxera plague”, when a root louse called phylloxera vastatrix was inadvertently introduced to European vineyards – it was Texan horticulturalist Thomas Munson who saved the wine industry with a groundbreaking new grafting process. He used his invention to graft European grape varieties onto hardy American rootstock that could resist the mite.
But sometimes it’s fair to question just how far technology should go when it comes to our wine – a good case in point being a recent German innovation called Trek ‘n Eat Red Wine. Designed for hikers, campers and outdoors types, this powdered product promises ‘instant’ red wine – just add water.
Boasting an alcohol content of 8.2%, each sachet contains 60g of red powder which you stir into boiling water. The result, it’s claimed, is an instant Gluhwein that’s just perfect for restoring the energy of weary hikers.
In actuality, calling this product ‘wine’ is about as accurate as those sugar-laden kid’s drinks masquerading as a ‘juice’ drink – the bulk of Trek ‘n Eat Red Wine is maltodextrin, with just 2.9% of ‘red wine extract’ added.
However, we at Wine Portfolio like to be open-minded about these things, and think the proof will be in the pudding (or, in this instance, the pouring.) Unfortunately, Trek ‘n Eat Red Wine is currently unavailable in North America or the United Kingdom, so we’ll have to withhold our final verdict until we’ve managed to give it a proper taste test.
Until then – what do you think? Is powdered wine taking viticultural technology a step too far? Or just the innovation thirsty hikers been waiting for?