Some Inventive Ways To Reuse Wine Crates

Roberto Viernes
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Wednesday - May 13, 2009
| Share

What do you do with those beautiful cardboard and wooden boxes that wines come in? Bottles are easily recyclable, but much of the packaging it comes in is not.

Everyone is going green, and recycling is a big part of the practice, so I thought I might give you some ideas for dealing with those extra boxes you may have lying around.

I’ve seen some very tastefully designed furniture using the wooden crates that some wines come in, from chairs to bookshelves and tables to lighting fixtures.

There is a bench in Formaggio Wine Bar that features stained box ends that display the names of the wines that were contained therein.

The counter bar at HASR Wine Co., where they do a lot of wine tasting, also has the ends of the boxes glued together to form a beautiful accent, appropriate for a top wine shop.

In France, I saw an office where a full wall was plastered with the branded portions of the wine crates of the famous wines of the world that the proprietor has reported to drink. I thought I might want to do that to my office, but I don’t think my wife would go for it.


Speaking of my sweetheart, if you can’t find just the right wall to plaster, she came up with a brilliant idea to use the entire crate as a planter. She drills holes at the bottom of the box, adds potting soil then plants herbs or flowers inside. They make wonderful gifts as well as home accents around the garden and the yard. They’re also handy for people who want to have fresh herbs in apartments with limited space.

Another favorite application is the dog/cat bowl holder. You take the wine crate and flip it over and make two holes the size of dog/cat bowls for their food and water. I think people call it the “whine and dine” platter.

For all you fishermen, one of my friends uses the unbranded portions of the crate for wrapping and storing fishing lures. Being an avid fisherman, he swears they are the perfect size. The wood is soft enough to hold a fishing hook without dulling it. It also doubles as a bait cutting board.

Some of the small wooden boxes that come with a single bottle of a precious wine in them are great for other applications. I’ve seen them reborn as humidors beautifully embellished with velvet inside, and humidification units to boot. They also look great when people remake them into carrying cases complete with handle and latch to keep the wine secure. If the bottle has a slide door, a rope tied through holes at the top of the box also performs the same function.

Those pretty cardboard boxes that many of the Champagne Tete de Cuvees come in also make great carrying cases when transformed. Most are too small for holding DVDs or CDs, even when you take out the inside stuffing, but they make handsome storage for calligraphy paint brushes, business cards and anything else you can fit inside.

Whatever you make out of the packaging the wine comes in, I hope it helps to remind you of the pleasure you experienced when you drank the wine. And if you don’t use them yourself, I’m sure you know someone who will.

Recommendations: 2006 Ravenswood Vintner’s Blend Petit Syrah ($12) For those of you who like bullish, thick, jammy wines, this is a wine for you. Blackberry jam, sweet baking spices and richness abound. Plenty of boom for the buck! 2006 Le Pupille Morellino di Scansano ($19) This Chianti cousin is more polished and sleek than most versions of Chianti, with plumper red fruit flavors that sing onto a vibrant and lengthy finish.

Roberto Viernes is a master sommelier. E-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
E-mail this story | Print this page | Comments (0) | Archive | RSS Comments (0) |

Most Recent Comment(s):

Posting a comment on requires a free registration.



Auto Login

Forgot Password

Times Supermarket


90+ point rated wines under $20



Tiare Asia and Alex Bing
were spotted at the Sugar Ray's Bar Lounge