The new normal is $30 and you must fight this nonsense.

How did this happen, wines costing $30 now being described as bargains?

A few decades back wine writers decided it was now beneath them to inform readers of the bargain they had discovered for $7. Better that you appreciated wine as art and saw the makers as artisans, bonding with nature. Value be damned.

And the story about the giant liquor retailer Endeavour Group continues with the focus moving to problems at Dan Murphy the chain of 266 super liquor stores. It seems something is not right and with the emphasis on EBIT, short for margin and profit, the doubt grows that the old marketing line ‘no-body beats Dans’ makes any sense. 

Glug offers better value and to do this we created our own brands. Being wine makers with a retail background means we see our job as creating value as found in Hopcroft & Cornock McLaren Vale Shiraz 2020 and Colton & Hewett McLaren Vale / Barossa Valley Cabernet Shiraz 2015.

David Sipress, The New Yorker
Businesses and retail categories evolve yet the wine business has moved into the oddest place summed up by a desire to show we are classy where class means expensive. (image: David Sipress, The New Yorker)

Writing about wine was initiated by George Saintsbury’s, Notes on a Cellar-Book (1920). In Australia, Walter James led the way in the 1950s as did the merchant Dan Murphy.

With consumers moving to table wines the need for advice grew, and slowly this changed from what to buy to a running travelogue about wine tourism.

With this appeared luxury wines and a price explosion which lifted our bargain from $7 to $30. Consider several recent comments.

The Australian on November 25th 2022, ‘Award Winning Wines Under $30’. (The 33 wines averaged $26).

Chairman of Judges, Sarah Crowe at the Royal Sydney Wine Show 2023; ‘Out of the thirty trophies awarded last night, around 50 per cent of them are available to Australians at under $40, and a large portion of these can be snapped up for $30 or less’. Note – I found one.

James Halliday 2023 awards; ‘Bleasdale 2021 Wellington Road Shiraz Cabernet also got 98 points. Bargain alert: That’s a big score for a wine with a price tag of $32’.

Alas we can no longer look to our major retailer Dans for assistance as they are more interested in maintaining prices than setting off a price war. Did you know they own 10 wineries, an example being Cape Mentelle, and they did not buy them to lower prices.

Anyway whether a wine is fully priced or discounted ask yourself, was it worth buying in the first place.

Glug wines pass the test and two just bottled are the Kitts Creek Barossa Valley Shiraz 2019 and Mount Eagle Eden Valley Montepulciano 2021.

So, Drink Widely Drink Well

David Farmer

David Farmer
Shopping Cart