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How to Reuse & Recycle Wine Bottles

Few companies, let alone wineries have a sustainability track record that goes as far back as ours here at Wente Vineyards. Our land, wines, and community continue to thrive thanks to initiatives implemented as early as 1883, while the current generation seeks ever more innovative ways to curb our carbon impact.

Earlier this year, Wente Vineyards was the proud recipient of the Wine Institute’s prestigious Green Medal Leader Award for sustainable wine growing. The award recognized our leadership in certified sustainable practices that span both our vineyards and winery and the socially responsible initiatives that benefit our employees and greater community in the Livermore Valley and beyond.

This award inspired us to pay it forward with a new Summer of Sustainability initiative. In addition to doing your part by enjoying our Certified Sustainable wines, we’re calling on all Wente Vineyards wine lovers to join us in further decreasing our collective carbon impact. In addition, we are eager to share a few creative new ways to recycle, upcycle, and reuse your wine bottles to help curb unnecessary waste. After all, every great bottle deserves a second life!

Here are six vinous sustainability initiatives to try at home:

  1. Unexpected flower vase
  2. Vinous candle holder
  3. Garden Bottle Edging
  4. DIY LED light lamp
  5. Water vessel at your next dinner party
  6. Recycle Corks and Glass
Unexpected Flower Vase

Ditch the traditional vase and opt for a beautiful, unique flower vase with your next empty bottle of Niki’s Rosé or Riverbank Riesling. All of our wine bottles are as classic as they are modern and make a great unexpected conversation piece with a couple of stems tossed in. You can even opt to remove the label and have a plain wine bottle vase for more design versatility. Just simply trim and insert long stem flowers into the neck of the wine and enjoy your favorite new vase!

Vinous candle holder

Wine bottles make stunning candle holders. You can use a tool to carefully cut the bottom of the wine bottle, place a mid-size candle on a small plate or coaster-like piece, and put the wine bottle on top for a glowing effect. Or, simply purchase the right size taper candles to insert into the neck of the wine bottle. These make for unique table settings if you’re looking to impress dinner guests.

Garden bottle edging

Gardens and wine are a natural pairing. Line your garden with wine bottles to create a visually demarcated space or to line a path within your garden. Keep the bottles as is, or use a glass cutter to shave off the top half of the bottle, flip them upside down and secure them firmly into the grass, dirt, etc. to create an eye-catching garden pathway

DIY LED light lamp

Make your favorite bottle glow. A short string of LED lights, about 55 lights and 10 feet of cord, will fit perfectly into a standard Wente Vineyards glass bottle. Using a battery-operated light string allows you to place the bottle light anywhere, regardless of nearby outlet access. These can be used for extra lighting in a home, decoration for a dinner party, weddings, and even as a fun night light!

water-vessel water-vessel
Water vessel at your next dinner party

Create your tablescape decor without the spend. Clean and remove the label of your wine bottle and utilize it as a water pitcher that doesn’t hurt the tablescape décor. The small footprint can allow you to have multiple bottles on the table for guests to reach easily.

Properly Recycle for Our Planet and Economy

According to the Glass Packaging Institute, a trade organization representing the recycling industry, there is never enough glass out there – often because people recycle all wrong. Most well-meaning recyclers don’t realize that glass colors should be kept separate. Try to separate your clear wine bottles from your green and brown ones. Pack them in a plastic bag according to their color, then drop them in your recycling bin outside. Every six tons of recycled glass saves one ton of carbon from being released into the atmosphere. The Container Recycling Institute, another trade group, reports that recycling 1,000 tons of glass creates eight jobs. So, ensuring those wine bottles get appropriately recycled can help the economy, too.

This process even goes for Wente Vineyards corks. All Wente Vineyards tasting rooms serve as designated drop-off spots for Cork ReHarvest, a program focused on collecting and recycling used and surplus corks. Otherwise, did you know you can compost corks so long as they are made from natural cork?

Shop Sustainable Wines

In honor of our Summer of Sustainability initiative, we have created four verticals of our Artist Series wines. These wines are certified sustainable and give back to arts education with each purchase. Support the planet and education with a vertical from our Summer of Sustainability collection.