If you’re a fan of the boxed meal kit—the service in which all the ingredients to prepare a home-cooked meal come neatly packaged and delivered to your doorstep—dinnertime just got more fun.
Blue Apron, a newly minted unicorn in the boxed meal space with a recent $2 billion valuation, has just launched Blue Apron Wine. This service, which is currently only available to Blue Apron customers, delivers bottles that are designed to pair with the meals that will be delivered that month. Each Blue Apron Wine delivery includes six 500ml bottles of wine at a cost of $65.99 per month including shipping. Customers are free to skip a month or cancel at any time.
“We created custom bottles that are two-thirds the size of traditional bottles,” Matt Salzberg, Blue Apron’s CEO, tells Fast Company. “We wanted them to be perfect for two people to drink on an average weeknight without having to worry about not being able finish the bottle.”
Salzberg says that the company has hired a team of sommeliers who are working with independent winemakers around the world to produce wines that will only be available to Blue Apron customers. In some cases, the wines will be limited-edition vintages.
However, Blue Apron is taking a deliberately non-snooty approach to wine. “The entire mission of the company is to promote a love of lifelong learning in the kitchen,” Salzberg says. “We want to extend this to wine by taking out some of wine’s complexity by making wine more accessible and fun to customers.” Each wine comes with information about the vineyard, tasting notes about the wine, and details about how to pair the wine with that month’s Blue Apron menus.
Given that different states have different regulations about shipping wine, Blue Apron Wine is only able to deliver to 28 states and is currently working with a partner, Terravant Wine Company, to expand to new states. “Our customers have been asking us for a service like this for three years,” Salzberg says. “It’s taken us time to work on developing Blue Apron Wine to make sure that we are fully compliant with all laws and regulations.”