A handful of companies are coming to the rescue in the carry-on drinks department. Wine writer and comedian Marissa Ross is a big fan of Fly Wine , a collection of TSA-friendly single serving bottles that you won’t find on your average Delta flight. All of Fly-Wine’s bottles have been rated 90 points or above by Wine Spectator.
The online drinks magazine Punch recently partnered with W&P Design to create the Carry-On Cocktail Kit, a smartly packaged case of cocktail ingredients like tonic syrup for G&Ts and seasoned bitters for Old Fashioneds. Evan Kleiman interviewed Punch’s Editor in Chief Talia Baiocchi about her airport preferences and drinking suggestions earlier this week. Below is an edited version of their conversation.
Evan: So you’re at the airport and have some time to kill. Do you start drinking? Or do you wait to get on the plane? Tell me how you deal with this sort of mid-level bar world that we encounter in airports and on planes.
Talia: I think a lot of people would think that because I spent so much time thinking about a curated drinking experience that I would have a really really tough time on an airplane but I don’t. I really kind of love drinking the cold crappy glass of red wine and watching the new Mandy Moore rom com.
Tell me about the Carry On Cocktail Kit.
In collaboration with a design firm called W&P Design we created a little kit that you can bring on the plane with you. For example we just launched a gin and tonic which includes a tonic syrup. Then when you’re up there you mix it with just sparkling water and gin to make your own craft gin and tonic. Then you’re not relegated to Schwepps. We found out very early on that bringing alcohol onto an airplane is a big no no and so we’re trying to find ways around it and still offer people the opportunity to have a really great cocktail on the airplane.
So let’s talk about the wine programs. Do you think that they’re going to extend to craft beer as well I mean it just seems that it would be such a simple thing for an airline to offer.
Yeah, you’re already seeing some of that. I don’t know if the airlines can every fully crack the code because the bigger companies have so much power and they’re such a moneymaker for the airline. But you know I think the customer is starting to demand something different and again I think it all comes down to the airline wanting to offer their passengers that premium experience.
Are there any airlines in particular that have really made the commitment to completely redo their list?
Jet Blue recently hired Jon Bonne to curate a California wine list. We haven’t seen anything like that on other airlines, they really stuck their neck out and said, you know, we want to be a leader in this field. The wines on the list would be hard to find if you were to go out to your average wine store so it’s really exciting.
So I’d like to talk in a minute now about just the strategy of drinking while flying in general. Do you do you tend to go to a bar before you get on the plane or do you wait to get on the plane knowing that especially on long haul flights you’re going to be bored enough that you’re going to want to have more than one drink?
I have a ritual every time I fly. I actually try to get to the airport early so I have time to actually have a drink before my flight. I always have either an Americano, which is just Campari, sweet vermouth and soda, or an Aperol Spritz.