(screenshot from NYT)The New York Times today had a nice story about the official introduction of boxed win in Italy. Quoting Bloomberg, the NYT rerported "Italy’s Agriculture Ministry said that some fine Italian wines that receive government quality guarantees will be allowed to be sold in boxes. "
Good for them. I'm a hater of corks. No other technology in the world would be allowed to fail as often as corks do and be allowed to persist. What if gallons of milk went bad at the rate that bottles of wine do? The dairy industry would die off in weeks.
But I must say, what counts as a "box" is being given clever and stylish leeway. For me, a prototypical box is most certainly square-ish, with 90 degree angles. If a box is to deviate from this prototype, for me it needs a special modifier like "hat box" or "pill box" or (even "Leopard Skin Pill Box Hat" as in this most excellent Dylan song).
The specialty wine box above seems to be a haute couture variation on Labov's famed 1973 study of how how an object's function affects its naming. Prototypical wine boxes might be square-ish, but a variation may take the box name because it is more importantly a wine container fashioned out of a similar material (presumably cardboad of some sort).
(pssst, the best reference I could find quickly for Labov's 1973 study is this Google books result here. If anyone knows of a better one, just let me know.)