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Why Bin Ends are Well Worth a Punt

Why Bin Ends are Well Worth a Punt

The term ‘bin ends’ often conjures up images of dust-covered bottles that have been pulled out of the back of the stockroom or warehouse and labelled up at knock-down prices. You don’t really know how long they’ve been there and you can’t help but get the feeling that what you’re buying could be a bit of a lottery!

While there’s an element of truth in this, more often than not bin ends are simply wines that have been brought in as part of a comprehensive range, but just haven’t caught the consumer’s attention for whatever reason. There’s certainly nothing wrong with the wine.

In fact, the wine is probably very decent. It just doesn’t have the recognition or perceived value that the faster-moving wines achieve. They’re certainly not wines that have just been forgotten about and gone past their ideal drinking window.


Useful tips to finding bin end bargains

Here are a few handy tips to help you navigate through the bin end minefield.

Vintage

It’s always worth checking the vintage of the wine before you part with your money. If it’s a lower-priced white or rosé wine, let’s say one that originally sold for under £10, anything over 2 years old will be starting to get tired. What I mean by that is it will be losing its freshness and may be flat and dull. A similarly priced red wine may start to do the same from 3-4 years old.

A more expensive wine doesn’t instantly guarantee that it will fare better for longer but the odds are stacked more in its favour.


Use Google

There are a couple of ways that you can use the world’s biggest resource for info:

A quick search of the wine/s in question will confirm the benchmark selling prices so that you can judge whether or not it’s a genuine bargain.

You can also try checking on a wine review website like www.cellartracker.com or look at the consumer reviews on www.vivino.com for an indication of how that particular wine is tasting. You can also access professional reviews for finer wines on www.wine-searcher.com. Just remember that all of these are subjective and it is possible to get some bottle variation so don’t take them as gospel.


Don’t recognise it, give it a go anyway!

Just because you don’t immediately recognise the wine shouldn’t mean you should instantly disregard it. This is a golden opportunity to try something you don’t know.

A Treixadura from northern Spain, an Alentejo red from Portugal or some obscure blended red from Pic Saint Loup…what the heck are they?

Buy them and try them. They’re inexpensive and I can assure you that they’re all good or they wouldn’t have made it into our range in the first place!

Of course, when you see wines that you do recognise, just check the vintage (if applicable) and snap them up.


My Top 3 bin ends well worth trying

Rosé de Touraine, Domaine Patrick Vauvy (From £12.15 down to £7.95)

As summer is continuing to hold on, this delicious rosé is definitely worth snapping up. Touraine may be better known for Sauvignon Blanc, but with plantings of Gamay, Cabernet Franc, Côt (aka Malbec) and the delicately rare Pineau d’Aunis, the rosés are light, juicy and fragrant. This is on the drier side, like a Provence rosé, and it’s ideal for sipping in the garden as an apéritif or alongside some charcuterie and mild cheeses.


Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc, Domaine de L’Espigouette (From £13.10 down to £8.95)

While most Côtes-du-Rhône’s are indeed red, the whites should definitely not to be ignored. This is a fine example, carefully blended from 40+ year-old Viognier (70%) and Grenache Blanc with a tiny amount of Marsanne thrown into the mix too. Bernard Latour and his sons Julien and Emilien work with very small yields and partially age this wine in large old oak 600 litre casks to add a subtle smoky, spicy note to the gently perfumed fruit. This is a steal!


Finca Bacara, Time Waits For No One ‘Stone Elephant’, Jumilla (From £12.50 down to £8.70)

Whether it’s a late summer barbecue or a rich autumnal stew, this warming red from southern Spain is an absolute winning partner. Made exclusively from organically-farmed Monastrell (aka Mourvèdre) grown at relatively high-altitude (900m), this powerful red is packed with ripe black fruits and subtle hints of oaky spice. It’s skilfully crafted and shows a purity and roundness not normally associated with this grape variety.


We have a full range of bin ends that are well worth browsing if you have gaps to fill in your wine rack! There’s no huge rush to drink them either.


Please get in touch if you’d like any personal guidance or further information.

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