wine in cans

Wine in cans: They could be the future, as I look back to the past!

I’m moving to March 2021 with a look back on my wine life in this New Year review. At the beginning of the year, winetasting by Zoom was a “thing” and I did a fair share of them!

I also supported my wine buddy Mike Turner of Feel Good Grapes in some of his online events; and that was the first time I took a deep-dive enjoying premium wine in cans.

Of course wine in cans isn’t new; but there’s now a real drive to quality which isn’t necessarily achieved by the mass market cans seen in supermarkets and other retailers.

Sustainability is also a key element behind the cans’ format.

I was intrigued. And so I asked Mike to share some of his thoughts for a story, some of which follows:


Wine in cans is going through much the same cultural and acceptance process we had with screwcaps and corks a decade or so ago.

We didn’t think the wines were up to scratch.

My attitude has changed and mainly because I’ve been spending time (albeit via a computer screen) with a wine chum, Mike Turner of Feel Good Grapes.

Southport-born Mike is a champion of wine in cans, and is one of the leading supporters of the growth of the industry in the UK.

He is also an eco devotee.

Mike Turner of Feel Good Grapes

He says: “Cans are by far the most eco friendly option for smaller format wine drinking.

“They’re about five per cent of the carbon footprint of a half sized glass bottle and more recyclable and recycled.”

Mike went to sixth form at KGV College in Southport and had summer stints working at a beetroot packing factory near Ormskirk.

Not the place for a love of wine to begin!

Mike’s heart became wine-shaped when he spent time in Italy, in vineyards and meeting winemakers.

He told me: “I was stuck in a job with no passion at all.

“I worked at an investment bank for nearly a decade, left when my mental health took a nose dive and I had to think of something else to do.

“Wine was one of the few things at the time that still brought me any joy.

“Sounds horribly depressing that doesn’t it? But it gave me a way out, using my brain, igniting fun in my life.”

He has founded Feel Good Grapes with his friend, rugby player Toby Flood.

As for his strong eco beliefs, Mike says: “The more I spent time in vineyards and around the wine trade, I saw a lot of conventional’ practices and thought that wasn’t right.

“From there you add the idea of looking after your energy sources, your carbon footprint, all things like that.

“When Toby and I started the company it was something we were both hot on.

“For me it was solely from the divergences of what I’d seen in the vineyards and what I thought we could achieve.

“For him, well, he’s got three kids under five years old.

“You can’t help but wonder about what kind of planet we’re passing on to the next generation.”

Thanks to Mike I’m now a convert, seeking out quality wine in cans.

The eco benefits, plus the practicalities of taking cans to picnics and festivals instead of bottles are clear.

The wines which first turned my head were these: Larkin Wines “Larkan” Red 2017 and the Larkin Wines “Larkan” White 2017 (£11, Feel Good Grapes).

The red is a premium Californian Napa Valley merlot.

It really is delicious, with red and black fruits, a sweep of vanilla and a good dash of spice.

And this one, Copper Crew Merlot (£4.50) is fab. It is an addition to an award-winning range founded by pals who gave up their suited day jobs to be in the wine world via quality cans.

Wine in cans … are they the future?
But what of the future for wine in cans? Will they be more mainstream?

Says Mike: “There are lots of upsides.

“The biggest stumbling block will be people’s attitudes. Wine in a can?  Are you nuts? It’ll sound cheap and nasty.  I get that.

“Solely from an eco point of view it’s the way forward, but that’ll only work if we’re putting good wines in cans.

“All these £2 a cans cropping up in supermarkets is not good wine.

“That’s not being snobby, it just isn’t.

“Yes, it’s for a different market, but the reputation of wine in cans takes a dive.

“We may well ruin another viable packaging option for wine, like we did with bag in box that’s only slowly recovering its reputation.”

Discover some wine in cans at feelgoodgrapes.com


This first published in print and online in several titles in the North West. Read the full piece online at the Lancashire Post  


DISCOVER WINE: Mike Turner is one of the educators for One Foot in the Grapes WSET wine courses. Find out more.

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