January 9, 2014

I am often asked to suggest the ideal amount of money to spend on a bottle of wine to ensure it will be decent. There is no absolute answer unfortunately. However I stumbled across a really very informative price guide recently (click on the image to view in full).

Talking to British friends over the summer I realised that they were finding it increasingly difficult to source decent and consistently good everyday drinking wine for anything less than around £7. The following information goes a little way to explaining why exactly that is.

I hope that you will be as shocked as I was to learn that a £4.99 bottle of wine in the UK contains only 16p towards the quality of the wine, 60p covers the costs of the winery, labour and shipping. £2.83 goes on duty and tax, £1.40 is allocated to margin (28%). However if you can afford to increase your spend to £6.99 then suddenly you are contributing £1.27 to wine quality and by the time you spend £9.99 you have increased to £2.93 towards the wine itself. The contribution towards quality just keeps getting better as you continue to increase your spend as you would expect.

For us here in Malaysia duty and tax are a considerably higher percentage of the cost of wine, and differ depending on the style of wine, hence the high prices for even fairly basic wines. The message is the same; you will get a considerably better quality wine if you spend just a little more. Not all cheap wine is rubbish, you will find good and bad examples in every price range; equally you really don’t need to spend a fortune to guarantee quality you just need to know where to look.

So if you are looking for wines to buy as a gift or even just to drink over the holidays then my advice is, as ever, to decide on your own personal budget, know the types of wines you like and then keep your nose to the ground for advice. You could read my blog, or anyone else’s if you need to, for wine suggestions and reviews. Ask for guidance in a store if you can find someone with an unbiased opinion. Do try not to fall for the buy one free one offers, they are rarely decent promotions. Merry Xmas Wine Shopping.

If you want to look at more informative info-graphics related to the above price guide then go to www.corksout.com “What’s in your bottle”.


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