Best Place to Buy Boxed Wine (2004)
Nothing like coming home with a big ol' box of wine. That's the equivalent of four bottles, which means plenty of sophistication for an evening. While most people place boxed wine on the same level as, say, cheap vinegar or water from the dog's dish, some vintners recently began filling the square containers with drinkable product. In other words, it's not just for Franzia anymore. In fact, Central Market carries boxed varietals from Napa Valley, Australia and even France. What makes the snobbish grocery the best place to buy boxed wine, however, is the number of serious shoppers roaming the aisles with wine guides open, intent on finding a bottle mentioned by Robert Parker or prized by Wine Spectator. The mere act of maneuvering through this crowd as they study each label, walking boldly up to a shelf and grabbing a reasonably priced (read: cheap) box of wine as they gape in horror, is sheer fun.