Because wine not?
Advertisement
Pinot Noir Ranking
No offense to all you Leos out there, but August is kind of the worst month. Itu2019s hot, summer vacations are becoming a thing of the past, and there arenu2019t even any holidays to look forward to. Iu2019m so incredibly ready to trade in my sandals for boots, my u003ca href="https://www.myrecipes.com/how-to/cooking-questions/french-vanilla-vs-vanilla"u003eFrench vanillau003c/au003eu00a0for u003ca href="https://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/pumpkin-spice-cookies"u003epumpkin spiceu003c/au003e, and my breezy rosu00e9 for a luscious red.u00a0u003cemu003eRelated: u003ca href="https://www.myrecipes.com/news/best-boxed-rose-wine"u003eWe Tried Every Boxed Rosu00e9 We Could Find and This Was the Best Oneu003c/au003eu003c/emu003eThatu2019s why, in the spirit of wistfulness, I decided to buy every box of pinot noir I could find.u00a0Iu2019ve raved about my love for boxed wine in the pastu2014you can read more about the wonder that is wine in a cardboard box u003ca href="https://www.myrecipes.com/news/cheez-it-boxed-wine"u003ehereu003c/au003e and u003ca href="https://www.myrecipes.com/rankings/best-box-pinot-grigio"u003ehereu003c/au003eu2014so Iu2019ll try to keep this short and sweet: Boxed wines getu00a0a bad rap, and thatu2019s a shame. Theyu2019re cheap, theyu2019re sustainable, and most boxed brands taste as good as their bottled counterparts (at similar price points).u00a0u003cemu003eRelated: u003ca href="https://www.myrecipes.com/rankings/best-box-pinot-grigio"u003eWe Tried Every Boxed Pinot Grigio We Could Find and This Was the Bestu003c/au003eu003c/emu003eIu2019m on a mission to find the best boxes on grocery store shelves, and Iu2019m dragging my coworkers along for the ride, making them taste along with me.u00a0Hereu2019s what our friends at u003cemu003eu003ca href="https://www.foodandwine.com/articles/wine-101-pinot-noir-and-red-burgundy"u003eFood u0026amp; Wineu003c/au003eu003c/emu003e have to say about pinot noir: u201cWhen itu2019s good, itu2019s ethereally aromatic, with flavors ranging from ripe red berries to sweet black cherries, and tannins that are firm but never obtrusive. When bad, unfortunately, itu2019s acidic, raspy, and bland.u201dHereu2019s how the boxes I found stacked up:u00a0Not Our Favorites, But Still WineFranzia[tiImage is_image="1" image_id="594504" image_style="375x375" align="left"]u003cemu003ePrice: $19 ($4.75 per bottle)u003c/emu003eIf you prefer grape juice to wine, Franziau2019s Pinot Noir/Carmenere was made for you. Itu2019s not our thing, but no judgment if itu2019s yours.u00a0Wine Cube[tiImage is_image="1" image_id="594495" image_style="375x375" align="left"]u003cemu003ePrice: $18 ($4.50 per bottle)u003c/emu003eTargetu2019s Wine Cube was our favorite boxed rosu00e9, so we were a little surprised that we didnu2019t love this one. It wasnu2019t bad, exactly, but the artificial vanilla flavor and strong acidity threw us off a bit.u00a0Black Box[tiImage is_image="1" image_id="594492" image_style="375x375" align="left"]u003cemu003ePrice: $20 ($5 per bottle)u003c/emu003eMeh. Black Boxu2019s Pinot Noir is a decent table wine: Itu2019s not great, but itu2019ll get the job done.u00a0u00a0Best For Drinkers With a Sweet ToothCorbett Canyon[tiImage is_image="1" image_id="594498" image_style="375x375" align="left"]u003cemu003ePrice: $16 ($4 per bottle)u003c/emu003eThis gave Franzia a run for its money on the sweet front. However, it had a bit more bite to it and we were fans of the cherry and raspberry notes.u00a0Best For FallCellar Box[tiImage is_image="1" image_id="594507" image_style="375x375" align="left"]u003cemu003ePrice: $17 ($4.25 per bottle)u003c/emu003eCellar Box was my favorite of the bunch, but others found it a bit too full-bodied for a pinot noir. One person said it u201ctastes like it actually came from a cellaru201d which, in this instance, is a good thing. The subtle spiciness makes this box perfect for chilly fall nights.u00a0Honorable MentionNaked Grape[tiImage is_image="1" image_id="594501" image_style="375x375" align="left"]u003cemu003ePrice: $18 ($4.50 per bottle)u003c/emu003eNaked Grape is famous for its pinot noir, and itu2019s easy to see why: This wine is extremely mild, yes, but itu2019s also balanced, smooth, and highly drinkable.u00a0Best All-AroundBota Box[tiImage is_image="1" image_id="594489" image_style="375x375" align="left"]u003cemu003ePrice: $20 ($5 per bottle)u003c/emu003eBota Box was the runner-up in each of our last two rankings, and weu2019re thrilled that this reliable brand finally took the top spot. The box touts a medium body with bright aromas of cherry, blackberry, and cocoa, and the wine inside certainly doesnu2019t disappoint.u00a0
| Credit: MyRecipes

No offense to all you Leos out there, but August is kind of the worst month. It's hot, summer vacations are becoming a thing of the past, and there aren't even any holidays to look forward to. I'm so incredibly ready to trade in my sandals for boots, my French vanilla for pumpkin spice, and my breezy rosé for a luscious red.

That's why, in the spirit of wistfulness, I decided to buy every box of pinot noir I could find.

I've raved about my love for boxed wine in the past—you can read more about the wonder that is wine in a cardboard box here and here—so I'll try to keep this short and sweet: Boxed wines get a bad rap, and that's a shame. They're cheap, they're sustainable, and most boxed brands taste as good as their bottled counterparts (at similar price points).

I'm on a mission to find the best boxes on grocery store shelves, and I'm dragging my coworkers along for the ride, making them taste along with me.

Here's what our friends at Food & Wine have to say about pinot noir: "When it's good, it's ethereally aromatic, with flavors ranging from ripe red berries to sweet black cherries, and tannins that are firm but never obtrusive. When bad, unfortunately, it's acidic, raspy, and bland."

Here's how the boxes I found stacked up:

Not Our Favorites, But Still Wine

Franzia

Franzia
Credit: Franzia

Franzia

Price: $19 ($4.75 per bottle)

If you prefer grape juice to wine, Franzia's Pinot Noir/Carmenere was made for you. It's not our thing, but no judgment if it's yours.

Wine Cube

Wine Cube
Credit: Wine Cube

Wine Cube

Price: $18 ($4.50 per bottle)

Target's Wine Cube was our favorite boxed rosé, so we were a little surprised that we didn't love this one. It wasn't bad, exactly, but the artificial vanilla flavor and strong acidity threw us off a bit.

Black Box

Black Box
Credit: Black Box

Black Box

Price: $20 ($5 per bottle)

Meh. Black Box's Pinot Noir is a decent table wine: It's not great, but it'll get the job done.

Best For Drinkers With a Sweet Tooth

Corbett Canyon

Corbett Canyon
Credit: Corbett Canyon

Corbett Canyon

Price: $16 ($4 per bottle)

This gave Franzia a run for its money on the sweet front. However, it had a bit more bite to it and we were fans of the cherry and raspberry notes.

Best For Fall

Cellar Box

Cellar Box Winery
Credit: Cellar Box Winery

Cellar Box Winery

Price: $17 ($4.25 per bottle)

Cellar Box was my favorite of the bunch, but others found it a bit too full-bodied for a pinot noir. One person said it "tastes like it actually came from a cellar" which, in this instance, is a good thing. The subtle spiciness makes this box perfect for chilly fall nights.

Honorable Mention

Naked Grape

Naked Grape
Credit: Naked Grape

Naked Grape

Price: $18 ($4.50 per bottle)

Naked Grape is famous for its pinot noir, and it's easy to see why: This wine is extremely mild, yes, but it's also balanced, smooth, and highly drinkable.

Best All-Around

Bota Box

Bota Box
Credit: Bota Box

Bota Box

Price: $20 ($5 per bottle)

Bota Box was the runner-up in each of our last two rankings, and we're thrilled that this reliable brand finally took the top spot. The box touts a medium body with bright aromas of cherry, blackberry, and cocoa, and the wine inside certainly doesn't disappoint.