Wine comes in all shapes and sizes. (Courtesy Ron Rubin Winery)
Ron Rubin has been involved in the wine business for a long time — beginning in 1972, when he joined his family’s wholesale liquor company as an employee — and in 2011 purchased River Road Family Vineyards and Winery, now doing business as Ron Rubin Winery.
Known mainly for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, Rubin and his team also make some Pinot Blanc, Syrah, and Pinot Gris, and are involved in charitable projects in and around Sonoma County. I’ve enjoyed a number of bottle of Rubin wines over the years, and recently tried something new from the name: Wines in a can.
Pam’s Unoaked Chardonnay and Ron’s Red are now available, and you can order them directly from the winery. I tasted both this week, after chilling the cans and packing them in a cold bag, and their flavor, size, and portability factor should make them popular among wine drinkers looking for weekend fun. (By the way, the Pam for whom the Chardonnay is named is married to Ron Rubin.)
The Chardonnay is crisp — 100 percent stainless steel fermentation, 12.4 percent alcohol — and the 187ml can is the perfect serving size. I had brought along a cheese and meat tray, and this wine and the red blend paired in an agreeable manner. The Chardonnay is full of fresh fruit — apple, citrus — and if you want to try something fun for your next family picnic or barbecue, give these cans a shot.
Ron’s Red, a blend of Zinfandel, Syrah, and Merlot, is a lively creation. It’s got a ruby-red hue, and drinks well with charcuterie (our duck sausage and mortadella benefitted from the pairing). If you like vibrant, bright fruit, this one’s for you. Raspberry and wild strawberry on the nose, tempered notes of pomegranate on the back of the palate. The finish is refreshing… nothing complex or cloying here.
The Rubin cans are air-tight — technology and design courtesy of Ball — and they come in cases of 24. We packed stemless glasses on our outing, but there’d be nothing wrong with drinking these wines directly from their original containers.
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