Food & Drink

Why You Should Start Buying Wine Online

Tash Stoodley
Photos: Ellen Morgan

In 1991, the World Wide Web went live to the world. In 2018, eBay has online shopping categories of Weird Stuff, Slightly Unusual Stuff and Really Weird Stuff. Your purchases are limited only by your imaginationor by what youre willing to have recorded on your internet search history. Bacon flavoured toothpaste. Belly lint. A human sized hamster wheel. You can literally buy anything.

Buying wine online is kind of like Tinder. Lots of people do it, but nobody talks about it. Theres a whole lot of swiping, with less judgemental commentary. But unlike Tinder, when the package arrives on your doorstep, it will look exactly like the picture.

You can buy wine direct from a winery, or a third-party website. Dont know where to start? Join some email lists. Sit back, relax, and wait for the deals to roll in. I suggest you get in quick, as most offers are only available for a limited time, and if its a really great bargain, it might sell out.

If you know what you want, go directly to the source. Many wineries have member clubs that offer ongoing discounts, loyalty rewards, or free shipping. If you drink like a fish and cant be bothered logging into your account every few days, sign up for regular pack deliveries. There are so many options available. Two bottles every two months, two cases every month, whatever you want, theres a plan to suit all drinking habits.

Tash Stoodley

If youre not fussy and just want a steady stream of booze cominatcha, go for a mystery pack, like an old school lucky dip at the local fair. Except it costs more than a gold coin, and doesnt come wrapped in newspaper. And you dont throw it in the bin when you get home.

Wine is such a personal preference, so its hard to trust the opinion of others. Someones 92-point wine is someone elses cooking red, destined for the simmering pot of spag bog. People get excited by points. And points are great; we all love them. But you need to know where they come from. Google the person behind the points, make sure its a respected authority on wine, and not just Aunt Martha who will happily do anything in exchange for a Facebook review of her home-made marmalade (which is delicious, just so you know.)

When a deal seems too good to be true, pay attention to vintage. Some discounting sites will have deals on roséor whites that are five or more years old, but those wines arent meant to age. For the most part, you want fresh, young whites. Sure, the advertised points were awarded to that wine, but scoring 90+ on release doesnt mean that point rating is relevant today.

If youve taken the plunge and made a purchase, make sure youre around to accept delivery, you dont want wine sitting on your doorstep for hours. The sunshine will spoil it, or more likely, your neighbours will nick it. Get it delivered to work. Dont do that too often though, in case your boss starts to think you have a problem… happy swiping!

Whats your go to South Australian wine? Let us know in the comments, below.

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