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 imagination…or by what you’re 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. There’s 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. Don’t 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 it’s 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 can’t 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, there’s a plan to suit all drinking habits.
If you’re not fussy and just want a steady stream of booze comin’atcha, go for a mystery pack, like an old school lucky dip at the local fair. Except it costs more than a gold coin, and doesn’t come wrapped in newspaper. And you don’t throw it in the bin when you get home.
Wine is such a personal preference, so it’s hard to trust the opinion of others. Someone’s 92-point wine is someone else’s 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 it’s 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 aren’t 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 doesn’t mean that point rating is relevant today.
If you’ve taken the plunge and made a purchase, make sure you’re around to accept delivery, you don’t 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. Don’t do that too often though, in case your boss starts to think you have a problem… happy swiping!
What’s your go to South Australian wine? Let us know in the comments, below.