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Bad Wine Flight

Bad airline wine is the result of bottle size and wine quality

March 7, 2011

Bad airline wine is the result of bottle size and wine quality

People have been complaining about airline food for years, but a top wine writer has turned his sights on airline wine. Dan Berger, author of the weekly Vintage Experiences newsletter, blames bad wine served to US airline coach passengers on bottle size and wine quality.

In a piece published by The Baltimore Sun, Berger explains that those cute little bottles, which are one-quarter the size of a typical 750ml bottle, spoil quicker than their larger counterparts as it is more difficult to remove the oxygen from the smaller units. Compounding the problem, wineries usually only bottle their lowest-quality products in that size. The airlines purchase them for around 50 cents a piece, store them for months, and then sell them to a captive audience at a large mark-up. No wonder Berger, who has been an airline wine consultant, refers to US airline coach travel as a "wine graveyard." His drink of choice when flying coach? Beer.

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