Taste-Testing 40s Of Rosé

It would be easy to write off a $16, 40-ounce bottle of rosé with metallic labeling as a stunt. But the bottles from Forty Ounce Wines, which landed in New York recently and are on their way to Illinois, Colorado, Pennsylvania and California right now, aren't. The wine's easy to sip, smells like summer and packs a tiny kick.

"My approach to wine is always about making things more approachable," Patrick Cappiello, the sommelier and co-owner of Rebelle in New York, who is part of the team behind the bottles, says. When he and wine importer Chris Desor were visiting a young winemaker, Julien Braud, in Muscadet a few years ago, they spotted what appeared to be a 40 of wine (it, like the ones here, was technically a liter bottle, or 33.8 ounces). The bottle was filled with grape juice, but Desor and Cappiello asked Braud if it could be filled with wine. The idea took a bit of explaining about the role of 40s in American drinking culture, but ultimately Braud signed on.

Last summer, the team debuted a Muscadet with packaging that nodded at historical Muscadet labels and 40s of beer, like Mickey's Big Mouth and Old English, which Cappiello drank as a teen, but the project stayed mostly under the radar. That changed this spring when the team debuted their rosé. A week ago, Yes Way Rosé regrammed a photo of the bottles from Cappiello's account. The bottles from the limited 1,200 cases sold out in days. "I had close to 100 cases on hold to pour at Rebelle," Cappiello says. "All that has been given to retail stores."

Thankfully, the team is working on bottling a second run, which should hit stores in late May. Oh, and rosé fans in other states? The team is working on expanding their reach, so keep your eyes open.