Summer is really and truly over, and not just because tomorrow is the fall equinox. No, it's because my beloved wine in a box is no longer available. If you will recall, Melanie found this wine at the beginning of the summer. Like it is with every summer, we thought it would last forever. With its attractive packaging (cream-colored box with snappy dark red graphics) and promise of endless pours, it seemed the good times would never run dry. I had it with antipasti. I had it with chicken, beef and vegetables. I had it for every single dinner, appropriate or not. I would have had it for breakfast, but I thought people might talk. Wine-in-a-box was there for me all summer long. Even when I tired of all the hot and humid weather, I never tired of the wine.
It came from World Market. When you went to buy it, there they were, amply stacked up in rows upon rows of wine-filled cubes. I had visions of buying hundreds and building some kind of structure out of them. The stacks and stacks of boxed wine encouraged one to buy in multiples. "Why not?" they said. "We're only $14.95 each! We're cheaper than hardwood flooring!"
Now I can see that this only contributed to the illusion of endless wine bounty.
One day I went to World Market to purchase a box for Aviva's birthday. I thought it would be funny and certainly would be easy to wrap. I didn't panic right away when the boxes weren't stacked up to greet me at the door as in past visits. I didn't even really panic when I couldn't find them anywhere in the store. Clearly, I was in denial. When I asked the lady behind the register about the fate of wine-in-a-box, she casually said "Oh, we don't have it anymore. You just have to snap these things up when they're in stock because who knows when they'll ever be back in again!" I acted cool but what I really wanted to do was shake her and scream "Lady, how the hell am supposed to build my wine igloo now?"
Maybe next year they'll be back. Until then, RIP, wine-in-a-box. You are sorely missed.