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What in the world is going on? First, they went from glass bottles to plastic bottles, and as if that wasn’t enough, then they went from corks made from real cork wood to plastic corks, and then they committed the ultimate sin by going from plastic corks to screw down caps. Who am I talking about? Those good folks who grow grapes and then turn them into wine, that’s who. And now, I fear those folks have completely lost it because now they are putting their wine in bags inside boxes!

Well, actually all of this has been going on for quite some time now; it’s just that I have never tasted wine from a bag in a box before. However, I have tasted wine from plastic bottles and wine from bottles with all sorts of different closures, and actually I don’t think any of those factors have played heavily with the taste of the wine. Good wine was still good and bad wine was still bad. By the by, that bag in that box is actually an airtight pouch that should keep this sangria fresh longer, up to 6 weeks.

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This Beso Del Sol (which translates to kissed by the sun) red sangria hails from Spain, and just to complicate matters, it comes in bottles, boxes and something that looks like a pregnant toothpaste tube. Now, I’m sure these containers won’t dramatically affect the flavor of the sangria, or at least I hope that’s the case, but as always the proof is in the tasting, so let’s get to it.

First off, this sangria is made from medium-bodied Spanish Tempranillo wine and mixed with fruit and sugar. The box is quite bold and colorful, and I am sure will appeal to a younger demographic. It is 8.5% alcohol by volume, which means you can enjoy several glasses without getting falling down drunk. It is a rich royal purple color and the nose has a sweet earthy aroma with citrus and pear and apple notes. On the palate, the fruity profile changes ever so slightly featuring plums and cherries and a touch of citrus. It tends to want to wander in the direction of the sweetness but is pulled gently back by a bit of tartness that balances the palate nicely. And, of course, there’s that wine flavor lurking in the background that is mild and yet just flavorful enough to fit in perfectly. The finish is short and sweet and smooth leaving a pleasant sweet, tart and citrusy mouth taste.

All in all, this is a pretty darn good sangria in a box. It could give that traditional summer drink of gin and tonic a run for its money. It is sweet without being overly sweet and the other fruit and wine flavors balance the taste out nicely. You could even add some fresh fruit to spice this baby up a bit more, and adding a few ice cubes wouldn’t hurt it either.

Beso Del Sol Red Sangria is available for around $20.00 per box which is the equivalent of four 750ml bottles and that my friends is one heck of a deal. It is 8.5% ABV or 17 proof.

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By George Brozowski

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