We’ve Been Caught with Our Tops Off! – Our decision to stop using foil

TopsOff_BW3& Going topless has never been so conservative…
On many of our wines, we’re no longer fitting a tin capsule around the neck of the bottle. Instead, we’ve put our “S” Logo on the corks ends so the bottles can still be identified laid down in the cellar.
Why would we do such a thing? Is it decent to send such naked bottles to the marketplace?
We think so, and here’s why:
A couple years ago, Carol started to field a lot of calls inquiring if we had any leftover tin capsules to sell. Since we started bottling wine in the 1990s, tin prices had always been in the $3/lb range and we thought the thick metal was a nice addition to our classy package. However, sparked by international demand, tin prices skyrocketed to over $10/lb in the last few years read more
TopsOff_ColorIn preparing our Lompoc Wine Ghetto tasting room we did in fact uncover a stack of old gold-colored tins from our 1997-2001 package. I called one of the recyclers back, weighed the boxes, and a gentleman showed up with a bundle of cash to purchase the old tin. This foray into the scrap metal game got me thinking. Why are we spending so much money on precious metal just to rip, slash, or saw it off with the blade of a corkscrew?
I started to pay attention to what other wineries were doing about this escalating cost. Italians and some other European wineries switched to much cheaper, paper-thin aluminum and even plastic. I noticed other wineries waxing their bottle tops. I didn’t like either of these options as I’ve actually cut my hand opening a Brunello and the aluminum feels cheap under the knife. My days waiting on tables, chipping away at a messy wax seal on a busy night, made me permanently adverse to wax.
TopsOff_BW2I saw the best solution on the bottles of some of my other boutique winery friends: just go topless!
Especially on our rebranded La Cuadrilla bottle, I think the naked look is very clean, and simple. In years prior, we sealed Cuadrilla with screw caps; but now that we’ve decided to go without foils, Cuadrilla opted for the more elegant cork closure while still keeping their well-deserved profit margin.
Topless bottles signal Stolpman’s singular goal to put everything IN the bottle, rather than pass unnecessary packaging and marketing costs to our customers. We’re doing our best to give you the absolute best wine for the money!