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Tom V

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taking wine for a plane ride

by Tom V » Fri Feb 22, 2013 3:18 am

We'll be flying off to Mexico to recharge the batteries this weekend and I was contemplating taking along some wine. I was wondering if anyone has packed a decent bottle in their checked suitcase for a plane ride and if so how it tasted upon arrival... 'am I better off bringing a low level wine without much character to compromise, or might it be worth packing for instance a 2006 Williams Selyem Sonoma Coast with significant sediment and giving it a couple of days to settle down after we arrive.
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Bob Parsons Alberta

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Bob Parsons Alberta » Fri Feb 22, 2013 4:39 am

Painted Turtle and Cupcake will do good for the beach. :lol:
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Peter May

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Peter May » Fri Feb 22, 2013 7:46 am

Tom V wrote:. I was wondering if anyone has packed a decent bottle in their checked suitcase for a plane ride and if so how it tasted upon arrival....


It will be as fine as if it'd been in the cabin in your hand baggage. Absolutely no problems/issues with wine in checked in baggage.
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Mark Lipton

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Mark Lipton » Fri Feb 22, 2013 11:20 am

If you bring any older wine, I'd certainly allow several days for the wine to "settle down" after its plane ride. Personally, I'd think that you'd be better off with younger wines.

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Carl Eppig

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Carl Eppig » Fri Feb 22, 2013 12:02 pm

The "resting" part that Mark mentions is my only concern. We have brought multiple cases back from CA in airplane holds without any problems; so long as we let the bottles rest for a week.
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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Paul Winalski » Fri Feb 22, 2013 12:52 pm

As long as the bottle's properly padded (e.g., stuck in the middle of clothing), I've never had trouble with transporting wine in checked-in luggage. Although the last time I tried it was pre-9/11. I don't know if TSA has issues with the practice.

You mentioned you were going to Mexico. There might be customs issues.

-Paul W.
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Mark Lipton

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Mark Lipton » Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:10 pm

Paul Winalski wrote:As long as the bottle's properly padded (e.g., stuck in the middle of clothing), I've never had trouble with transporting wine in checked-in luggage. Although the last time I tried it was pre-9/11. I don't know if TSA has issues with the practice.

You mentioned you were going to Mexico. There might be customs issues.


No, the TSA has no issues with wine in checked luggage, though the cases I've checked in as luggage usually show up with an "Inspected by TSA" flyer inside the resealed case. And unless you're bringing in a substantial amount of wine, customs is no issue either.

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Dale Williams » Fri Feb 22, 2013 3:42 pm

I've checked wine several times without incident. Personally I'd only do in styro or other container, I'd worry if I padded with clothing that TSA might leave vulnerable. I'd avoid anything with significant sediment unless I had at least 4-5 days for settling (more if something like older Piedmont, where fine sediment seems to stay in suspension a long time)
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Tom V

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Tom V » Fri Feb 22, 2013 4:59 pm

Based on the helpful input, thanks folks, I will pack a couple of young uncomplicated wines...a 2010 Louis M. Martini Sonoma Cabernet to bring to dinner one night, and a 2010 Chateau Margui Coteaux Varois Rose that I picked up from Garagiste, a lovely wine with a nice very slight bit of sweetness to it, for the balcony or beach.

As for the packing, it will be the maiden run for the bright yellow wine protectors that I purchased from Wine Enthusiast which provide "Two layers of shock-absorbent, insulating neoprene and velcro closures"...might turn out to be the best wine gadget I own!

...and now I'm off to pack :D
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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Mark Lipton » Sat Feb 23, 2013 12:36 am

Tom V wrote:Based on the helpful input, thanks folks, I will pack a couple of young uncomplicated wines...a 2010 Louis M. Martini Sonoma Cabernet to bring to dinner one night, and a 2010 Chateau Margui Coteaux Varois Rose that I picked up from Garagiste, a lovely wine with a nice very slight bit of sweetness to it, for the balcony or beach.

As for the packing, it will be the maiden run for the bright yellow wine protectors that I purchased from Wine Enthusiast which provide "Two layers of shock-absorbent, insulating neoprene and velcro closures"...might turn out to be the best wine gadget I own!


Those "gadgets" sound interesting, Tom. My last two adventures transporting quantities of wine on an airplane utilized Wineskins™, a commercial product that is basically a bottle-shaped container of bubble wrap that seals once the bottle is inside. They provide enough cushioning that I've put 15 bottles in Wineskins in a duffle bag, which I then checked as luggage. My wines made it all the way from Auckland to Indiana that way with nary a damaged bottle. I tried the same trick going from CA to IN with nearly as good results (one bottle was smashed on arrival), so at this point I'm 29/30 with them.

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Steve Slatcher

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Steve Slatcher » Sat Feb 23, 2013 1:54 pm

Paul Winalski wrote:As long as the bottle's properly padded (e.g., stuck in the middle of clothing), I've never had trouble with transporting wine in checked-in luggage.

Stuck in the middle of clothing is the technique I have used many times with no breakages. Make sure you have a few layers between the bottles too, though!
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Mark S

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Mark S » Sat Feb 23, 2013 3:10 pm

Instead of bringing wine to Mexico, why don't you use the opportunity to taste Mexican wines? I don't know where you'll be going to, but if it is anyplace at all touristy or metropolitan you should be able to find the best that Mexico offers, and - don't laugh - some of the better ones won't be horrible!
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Victorwine

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Victorwine » Sat Feb 23, 2013 3:41 pm

Mark wrote;
I tried the same trick going from CA to IN with nearly as good results (one bottle was smashed on arrival), so at this point I'm 29/30 with them.

Hi Mark,
With the one bottle that didn’t make it, did the “wineskin” contain the “spilled” wine? I believe the Wine Enthusiast “Bottle Guards” that Tom is talking about is made of neoprene and held around the bottle with velcro. (Not sure if the neoprene could soak up a whole bottle of wine?)

Salute
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Marc Kahn

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Marc Kahn » Sat Feb 23, 2013 4:00 pm

This may be a bit beside the point, but still worth mentioning, I think. Horizon Airlines (a subsidiary of Alaska Airlines) offers a special deal at the Santa Rosa, California (Sonoma County) airport only. For departing flights, you can bring one case of wine (packaged in a regular cardboard case is fine) for free as checked luggage. I've made use of this cool deal multiple times, and have never had any trouble retrieving my case when I reached my destination. No damage ever.
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Mark Lipton

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Re: taking wine for a plane ride

by Mark Lipton » Sat Feb 23, 2013 7:00 pm

Victorwine wrote:Mark wrote;
I tried the same trick going from CA to IN with nearly as good results (one bottle was smashed on arrival), so at this point I'm 29/30 with them.

Hi Mark,
With the one bottle that didn’t make it, did the “wineskin” contain the “spilled” wine? I believe the Wine Enthusiast “Bottle Guards” that Tom is talking about is made of neoprene and held around the bottle with velcro. (Not sure if the neoprene could soak up a whole bottle of wine?)

Salute


Victor,
WIneskins are designed to do just that (double-hulled construction a la your local supertanker), but in my case a sharp shard cut through both layers so some wine did leak out. Good thing it was just my dirty laundry in that duffle with the Wineskins!

Mark Lipton

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