Wine and frugal living. The two don’t always go together – if we’re being honest about it, they usually don’t go together. If you love a glass of wine but find yourself crossing it off the grocery list because it’s simply not in the budget, I want to tell you about one of the best kept secrets in wine:
When I tell people this, I usually get this reaction: “Huh? Grocery Outlet sells wine?!”
The answer is yes, they sell wine. Good wine. For ridiculously low prices, too. In fact, the wine section is probably one of my favorite sections to shop at Grocery Outlet (and also health and beauty, but that’s another post.)
Last week, I popped into my store to see what I could find. It made me wonder more about how exactly Grocery Outlet is able to offer these discounts and what goes into their selection process. Andrew Lee, Director of Purchasing for Wine, Beer, and Spirits at GO was able to send on some thoughts. “We are committed to the value but we also want the consumer to enjoy a wine of integrity.”
As far as the discounts go? Each wine has its own story for how it arrived to Grocery Outlet’s shelves. Lee shares this one with me: “Currently you will find some selections from Spain in our California stores that should sell for $12-$30 but are $2.99, these wines had been “misplaced” in a warehouse back east and the brands had moved on to newer vintages, incredible quality/value relationship.” In some cases, it’s as simple as overstock or product labeling changes – and the discount is passed onto you!
I shop at the South Tacoma Grocery Outlet, where the gentleman pictured above (Christopher!) works. Not only is he so upbeat and friendly, he knows a LOT about the wine you’ll find at Grocery Outlet. If you see him, do ask for a recommendation!
Here’s one I selected that got his vote of approval – Pine & Post Sweet Harvest Chardonnay. It’s priced at just $3.99 right now (find it elsewhere for as much as $8.99!). I shared this with a couple of my girlfriends over hot sweet potato soup, a loaf of crusty french bread with herbed olive oil, and homemade pear vanilla jam. Let’s just say….it was a very fun, delicious night! (And there might have been a little giggling going on!) I adored this wine – it was very light, smooth, and sweet.
In fact, we loved this wine so much, we had a hard time opening any of the other three bottles I took home (all for under $25, *ahem*!)! I do have this one currently sitting in my pantry, ready for another fun girls’ night or maybe movie night at home with hubby:
This merlot comes from the largest private estate in Chile! I love the stories behind the wines – where they came from, the families that run the vineyards. Christopher tells me that Chile is becoming one of the world’s best producers of Malbecs and Merlots. (Who’d have known?)
In fact, on Saturday, October 27th from 1-4 pm the South Tacoma Grocery Outlet store will be doing a tasting of Argentinian Malbecs in their store. Are you beginning to think Grocery Outlet is serious about offering good wine yet?
OK now the part of the post you’ve been waiting for: the sale announcement! Twice a year, Grocery Outlet runs a hot sale: 20% off ALL their already-discounted wines! The next one is coming up soon, too: November 7 – 11. So mark your calendars. A few notes:
- No. They do not raise prices just prior to the sale. That $3.99 bottle of Pine & Post? It’ll be just $3.19!
- No minimum; no maximum. If you want just a single bottle? Fine! If you want to buy cases? That’s fine too! Feel free to work with your individual store if you’re hankering to buy a lot of a particular wine.
- No coupon required. The sale will be taken automatically at checkout.
Under this sale, I’ve found bottles for $2 OR LESS before. It’s a great opportunity to make a trip in to check out everything Grocery Outlet has to offer if you’ve never been!
What if you’re stumped about what wine to buy?
Lee has this advice to offer: “Understand what you are buying, if you are purchasing a red wine that is 5-6 vintages old with a great savings you are getting a wine that has the qualities you would expect if you cellared the wine for that amount of time. The wines will show softer and rounder with less “in your face” tannins. If you like a gutsier red we find great values in blends and offer many of these type of wines in the $2.99-4.99 range. Ask questions of the staff in the store, they are often very helpful. Try the type of wine that you enjoy, if there is something amiss, bring it back and we’ll make it right. If you find something you really enjoy, go back and buy more quickly as we are the eternal treasure hunt and are always bringing in something new.”
To learn more about Grocery Outlet’s passion for bringing quality wines for less, watch this video where Andy Lee shares more:
And here’s another great video to watch where Christopher from the South Tacoma Grocery Outlet shares some thoughts on wines offered during the spring 20% off sale.
Enter the Giveaway
One lucky Coupon Project reader will be randomly selected to win a $25 Grocery Outlet gift card! My goal is to get this into the hands of the winner in time for the sale. (Please note: if you do not drink, the gift card can be used on ANYTHING in the store. So please don’t disqualify yourself from entering.)
To enter the contest, please leave a single comment on this post. Limit ONE comment per person, please. For fun, I’d love to hear your thoughts on Grocery Outlet’s wine, this sale, or Grocery Outlet in general. Perhaps share a treasure you found their recently, or tell me what sounds intriguing about this store if you’ve never been.
This contest will run through next week and close on Thursday, November 1st at 1pm PST. Good luck!
Disclosure: Grocery Outlet furnished a gift card for my review as well as for the winner. No other compensation was received. As you might imagine, if you win the gift card and intend to use it on the purchase of alcohol, you must be 21 or over with a valid ID. Please enjoy wine and other alcoholic beverages responsibly. For more information on how this site makes money, please refer to my Disclosure Policy.