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Wine on Tap – A Sensible Solution

September 3, 2015 – Wine by the glass can be a risky business both for the restaurant/bar offering the wine and the consumer purchasing it.  Once opened, wine begins to oxidize and the longer it is open, the more oxidation occurs and the worse it tastes.   Because of spoilage costs, bars and restaurants tend to limit their selection of WBGs to less expensive brands and “safe” varietals such as chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon.  It’s always disappointing to look at a wine list and find a limited and often poor selection of WBG.

Spoiled wine also hurts the winery.  A customer may not recognize the problem is oxidation and simply think it is horrible wine and vow never to buy that brand again.

But new technologies are solving the problem for restaurants, customers and wineries alike. offers the trade kegs of wine and a system to dispense the wine by the glass.  As the wine is poured from the keg, an inert gas prevents oxidation of the remaining wine., so it stays fresh for weeks, even months., owned by Free Flow Wines of Napa, has been around for about a year but is now in a re-launch phase, promoting the system to both the trade and consumers.  For all parties, it is a blessing as it allows a restaurant to offer better wines and a bigger selection at no risk of loss due to spoilage.  For the consumer, it is an opportunity to try new and different wines without having to splurge on a whole bottle.  For the wineries, it is an opportunity to introduce less familiar styles and grapes that get little exposure on wine lists by the glass.
The company has signed up 150 wineries covering 250 brands that the restaurateur/bar owner can select from so that the by-the-glass program can be expanded by type and price point and it can be rotated frequently.  Each keg holds 26 bottles of wine. Knowing there’s a good selection, including premium wines, available by the glass is an excellent reason to patronize a local restaurant.

To find a restaurant near you, go to and check on “Locations” for an interactive map.  About 4,000 wineries nationwide are participating.  You can also check out the wines being offered in the program.  The web site is geared to the trade but for anyone interested in knowing how it works, it’s all there.

Besides offering a broad choice and fresh tasting wines, is environmentally friendly saving 2,340 lbs of trash (bottles, corks, boxes, etc.) going to landfills over the lifetime of each recyclable keg.