The importance of money cannot be underestimated. Our world, society, and livelihood rely and thrive on it. Naturally, then, trying to conserve money is one of the main issues we all face every day – even when we are out wine shopping. Is it truly possible to buy cheap wine that is not only drinkable, but is a wine one can enjoy? As a matter of fact, it is – since expensive wine does not guarantee a good taste, cheap wine does not have to be necessarily ‘bad’. One just has to look for the right signs.
When people try to look for cheap wine, they often are satisfied for offer buys. For example, buy one, get one free, or price reductions, sound very tempting and lure many a buyer in. However, what is often the case is that that buyer has been fooled. In many wine-stores, the offer price is actually the real price. As such, the ‘original’ price is invented to make the offer possible and attractive. You should therefore be careful for any of these scams in the future!
However, if you are still intent at running to the store whenever there is a bargain buy, try buying wine when there are discounts on every wine in the store – not only those that otherwise would never get sold. Only then can you be sure that whatever wine you will be buying is genuinely being bought at a lower price due to a sale rather than any defections or poor quality. However, even with these store-wide discounts, many wines are simply too expensive for their taste.
Grapes and Brands
In fact, many wines have incredibly high prices because of the prestige of the region or producer that the grapes were grown in/collected buy. For example, a wine from Bordeaux is more than likely to have quite a hefty price tag – yet it might taste the same, or even worse than a wine that goes for 1/3 of the price.
Rather than specifically looking at the brand or at the region, try to identify the grape that you like the most. With the grape in mind, you can easily filter through all the classy-looking brands and look for a good wine with your grape within your price range. You can also take it one step further and look for wines with unusual grapes that have not yet fully caught on – something which is not necessarily bad as the wine industry is quite traditional when it comes to grape choices.
In this way, you can find high quality wines with, for example, the Primitive grape that will simply be cheaper as it is not as well known yet. It is interesting to see how something as small as a grape can determine such a huge difference in price!As many stores such as Lidl has successfully shown in its own way, the brand is not everything; there are many wines to be found that are ‘unknown’ but still taste just as good.
In a similar vein, try looking for wines in stores that in general sell less branded goods without compromising on quality. It is in these areas where you are more likely to find that undiscovered gem for a fraction of the price compared to ‘well-known’ wines of the same quality.
Despite my previously saying that the region is something you should not be too bothered about, it is still something to keep in mind in specific cases. In the quest to find good-but-cheap wine, some wine regions will definitely aid you. This is because some regions simply do not have the same ‘prestige’ as others despite producing high-quality wine. For example, the wines of Chile, Spain, and Portugal are not on par traditionally or economically with wines from France or South Africa, but some have the same (generally) high quality. As such, you could fine a wine as amazing as most from Bordeaux are at a fraction of the usual price due to it being grown from the valleys of Portugal instead. In this sense, even the very best wines from these regions will be comparably cheap – something to definitely be observant about.
Wine is usually bought for enjoyment. However, for many people it is hard to simply find a good bottle of wine due to inflating prices and simple lack of knowledge of what to look for. However, if you are in the right store, have a favorite grape (or are ready to try a new one), and do not mind the region a wine comes from (as at the end of the day it is all about the taste), there is a good chance that you will find a wine within your tight budget that is of a high standard. This is not to say that expensive wines are all bad – generally, these wines are of exceptional quality. But wines with similar tastes can be found much cheaper not due to its taste, but other, practical factors – something to be aware of the next time you are off to your wine store.