For online wine sellers, Memorial Weekend is like the first stage of the Triple Crown, with Fathers Day and July 4th to follow.
And as the long Memorial Weekend was unfolding, there was a lot of hyping and prancing around before the race began.
The dust is now settling leaving a couple of questions.
Which websites were better at it than others?
Which ones made a serious effort to offer new wines and attractive prices?
While everyone else was at the beach, tweeting, or walking the dog over the long weekend, we were following the major wine sites to identify the real winners.
Here are the top 3 Memorial weekend wine studs:
According to handicapper Jimmy the Grape, this was the pre-event favorite. After an early technical glitch out of the gate, this site hit its stride and by the final turn, it never looked back to emerge as the top choice.
The usual offerings were greatly expanded and the discounts ranged from 25% to 70%.
It augmented its outstanding roster of under the radar wines from the West Coast with wines from Meyer Family, Goosecross, Ravenswood and Talisman Pinot Noir,
Imports were led by a super French Rose and 2013 Meursault Rouge, Pierre Matrot, Cote d’Or, $19.99.
A real longshot, wiredforwines was a strong finisher with an impressive array of white wines and sparkling wines. Especially liked the 2016 Toutigeac Bordeaux Blanc at $13.99 and a 2016 Rioja for $12.97. Nicely priced Sancerre and Rias Baixas are tempting deals. For high-end fare, hard to beat the
2016 Arnot-Roberts Watson Chardonnay, Napa Valley.
Owned by self-proclaimed foodies operating of New Jersey, this site has come to life recently. Best on imported wines. Look for good deals in the Under $20 category and check out its Most Popular sellers.
- (Photo finish too close to call)
Sure, the spy thing is silly for wine though it works (for now) for Trump.This remains a go-to site if you love Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from Sonoma County. But it manages to pick up a hidden gem or two from Napa. Recent offering of the Secret Rows Sauvignon Blanc for $14.99 confirms this is a much-improved site for high quality wines at lovely prices.
This may seem surprising but this site recently shows exceptional versatility with good deals on McLaren Vale Grenache, a Paso Robles Syrah at 50% off and Phelps Chardonnay.
One of the oldest online wine sellers, the California Wine Club was a sentimental favorite viewed as a real workhorse. But while others were saying “Stock up here and Save,” this club was letting the super deals speak for themselves. Specializing in small, family owned California wineries, it stretched Memorial Day offers through June 16 and offered a huge list of wines at 25% below the already discounted prices.
By adding $1 case shipping, it came from way back in the pack to finish a strong third. The following are our favorite wines to stock up now and save big:
- 2016 Castoro Cellars Estate Viognier, Paso Robles $9.00
- 2012 Zaca Mesa Z Cuvee, Santa Ynez, $12.75
- 2013 Bien Nacido Vineyards Syrah, Santa Maria Valley $40
- 2014 Talley Vineyards Pinot Noir, Rincon Vyd, $32.
- 2015 Talley Vineyards Estate Chardonnay, $34
The rest of the pack:
http://www.vivino.com.com showed well and made a late move with a deeply discounted Steltzner Cabernet and a Howell Mountain Merlot. But why so many heavy reds weighing it down as June approaches? And it really needs to tamp down the batshit hype and maybe not associate every wine somehow with a winemaker who once made a 100 point wine. Or say every wine is rated over 95 points by somebody
Solid for discounted Italian and Spanish wines. From Chianti Classico to the Super Tuscans, this site beats most others for both selection and discounted prices. But otherwise limited offerings from other prime regions.
Enjoyed a decent weekend with specials on imported Roses. Good discounts and shipping options.
Rapidly improving but did not break away from the pack this week. Best for CA wines from limited production wineries. But also featured several first-rate French wines from Burgundy and Southern Rhone over the weekend.
Added hard to find wines such as the Scribe Pinot Noir,Tor Chardonnay and Vermillion from Keplinger.
Not all wines are discounted, this is more like a specialty online wine shop.
Proved itself once again as the site for stocking up on cases of quality wines to enjoy on an everyday basis. The list of wines under $20 set the stage this weekend.
Totally eccentric, with often brilliant selection of imports, this site devoted the weekend to offers of “mystery” wines. They were inexpensive, but seemed like a silly waste of time.
This very complete and reliable site with decent discounts didn’t come up with anything unusual or exciting other than adding a 10% discount