The good news for wine drinkers is that prices have never been more competitive—especially in the higher priced wines. By higher priced, I mean $30 and above. Those wines are moving more slowly, hence, the good old law of supply and demand kicks in.
Watch for sales and compare prices. That Quintessa that sells for $145 at the winery is $115 at HEB.
There are other ways to find value in wine.
Look for wines that are produced by the talented teams of the big name brands but that are bottled under different names.
For instance, the same team that produces Quintessa also produces a wine called Faust for less than half the price. The taste profiles are different, but the quality of the Faust wine is very good. The grapes for both wines are grown in the same area.
One producer to definitely check out is White Oak. White Oak’s spokesman tells me that their White Oak Chardonnay at $19 is VERY similar to Jordan’s Chardonnay that’s $31. He says, Jordan buys about 90% of its grapes from White Oak. Also, he says a large amount of White Oaks cabernet grapes are used in the Caymus Napa Cab. The Camus Cab is $60 and White Oak’s Napa Valley cab is about $27.
Another way to find some good value wines is to look for trusted and well respected producer’s other products. These days they don’t often use the same grapes in their lower priced wines, but the lower priced wines are made by the same skilled teams. Grapes are very important in the wine’s quality but so are the winemaker’s skills.
Other value buys – Duckhorn’s Decoy Red at $32 is made by the same team that produces the Duckhorn Cabernet that’s $65.
Quintessa, Napa is $115 (at HEB)…it’s sister winery Faust produces Faust Cabernet that’s $42.
The Hess Collection Cabernet Napa is $55.00 while the Hess Alomi Vineyard Cab is $23.
And, if you’re looking for spend less than $15 a bottle, watch for the Special Selects designation on wines at HEB. They’re often under $15. I’ve got some of those to show you…just click on the HEB logo.