As we start getting closer to summer and the most popular travel months, planning ahead isn’t all about luggage, airline tickets, car rentals, it’s about location. Something we should all add to our planning is if there isn’t a good winery or wine store, what are wee to do?
During the many trips I have taken over the years, I consistently left myself at the mercy of the hotel wine list, or one provided at the restaurant that particular evening. We have all experienced this at one time or another, looking at the list and not recognizing anything, and either taking your best shot, or asking for a recommendation. If only we could have access to our wine selection at home.
Through my experience and years of just going with it, I now find myself enjoying one of my favorite Chardonnays, Pinot Noir’s, Zinfandels or Syrah’s from my wine cellar. Difficult you ask? Not really, with a little careful planning and packing.
In a perfect world, all of us “wino’s” would have a liquor license, and be able to ship our wine anywhere. However most of my readers do not, so we must look at the alternatives available to you. Packaging is very important, especially to prevent breakage of you’re prized, expensive nectar of life.
Commercially produced travel options available to you for shipping bottles of wine. One of them is the Vinni Bag, which is a plastic sealable bag that protects your bottle from breakage and leakage. Another excellent choice is the WineSkin available on Amazon, which contains two bottles in each one. Both are excellent choices via commercially produced products.
In all fairness, there are other methods that will work as well, and you can easily take three to six bottles of your favorite wines with you in your checked baggage. And let me be specific in that no wine bottles can be in your carry on luggage on any airlines! That is unless you have your favorite wine in an “airline size” bottle, which in fact I have seen in some winery shops.
The easiest way is to wrap a bottle of wine in a shirt, towel, sweatshirt or the like, then put it in a plastic trash bag, wrap it tightly, and tape it up. If I may suggest, you might not want to use one of your expensive shirts, just in case. Next place it in the middle of your bag and surround it with clothes.
I recently uncovered or shall I say discovered from another wine traveler a very unique means of traveling with wine, safely. Measure two or three bottles of wine, then goes to your local Home Depot, and buy a length of 6-inch plastic pipe, which will fit the 2-3 bottles. Put a cap on one end, fill the pipe with the bottles of wine, with a shirt or padding between them, then attach a special cap to the other end by screwing it on, which you can find at your local store, or if not, just ask. If you need help with the design or assembly, ask anyone in your local home store.
Now keep in mind that when checking into the airlines, Homeland Security might not be all that happy with your parcel, and can ask you to take it apart for inspection. Just saying.
These plastic tubes can be put in your luggage or checked as baggage, and when you arrive at your final destination, celebrate by opening you favorite wine. And wherever you are traveling on vacation, chances are, if you take your bottle to dinner, for a meager corkage fee, having your own bottle of choice wine will be cheaper than ordering off the wine list.
So why settle for whatever you find, or don’t, on a wine list in an unfamiliar place or restaurant when you can be sipping on some of that fine collection you do at home.