Deal Found for Bargainistas

Last night I dumped a wine down the drain. Even at $3, the wine was not a good deal. Grocery Outlet buys wine that wineries are moving prior to new releases.

From the Bargainista Blog: These overstocks are most of what Grocery Outlet buys.  The wine can be from the winery, importer or distributor.  Past vintages are opportunistic buys, because once a vintage has been replaced by a newer vintage, the salespeople stop showing the older vintage.  Older vintages become a storage expense, not a sales opportunity.  Wineries, importers and distributors have money tied up in this stock.   To quickly move through non-performing inventory, wineries, importers, and distributors will sell the wine at cost or even a loss.

Yesterday’s post brought lots of activity and comments. People are pretty passionate about finding good deals. The general consensus about shopping at Grocery Outlet is that it’s hit or miss. Be cautious and buy some “test bottles” before you commit to quantity. BUT – when you find a bottle you recognize or a region you trust…scoop it up.

Tonight, I broke out the short sleeve golf shirt to celebrate Spring and two potential white wine “deals.”

The NectarView

2006 Imagine Chardonnay

  • The Stuff: 100% Russian River Chalk Hill estate Chardonnay. Aged in oak. A portion of each bottle benefits disadvantaged children. 
  • The Swirl: Clean and well filtered with a nice golden yellow color
  • The Sniff: Melon and pear/apple aroma with hints of oaky vanilla
  • The Sip: The wine has a nice mouth feel but the mid-palate seems slightly off structure. There is a mild butter toast that includes an effervescence like a sparkling wine. A good apple flavor comes through as well.
  • The Score: Retail of $22, I wouldn’t re-buy this Chardonnay, but at $11 this is a good 3!

Cellar Tracker Score (2 Reviews) of 84

This is the first DEAL from the Grocery Outlet bunch! With the 20% off sale March 30-April 3, this wine would only be $9 which is a good price for a well made Sonoma Chardonnay.

2007 Sylvester Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc

  • The Stuff: 93% Sauvignon Blanc and 7% Chardonnay from Paso Robles
  • The Swirl: Pale yellow, straw
  • The Sniff: A hint of lemon but a predominant yeast / bread smell
  • The Sip: At first the wine presents a really nice citrus and straw flavor but the back end kicks you with a tart finish.
  • The Score: Even at $5 I have to compare this to some other good Sauvignon Blanc’s from Arbor Crest ($7) and Yellow + Blue ($9). I can give this a 2 (out of 5). Some people may love the crisp flavor but there isn’t a lot going on here.

Cellar Tracker Score (1 Review) of 76

As a reminder, Grocery Outlet has a huge wine sale March 30 – April 3. Stop by for 20% off their already low prices. Each of the 130+ Grocery Outlet stores is independently operated, so selections vary by store.

*The wine in these reviews was purchased using a $50 gift card provided by Grocery Outlet


It’s simple, leave a comment. Names won’t be added to a mailing list and you won’t be spammed. One lucky person will receive a $50 Grocery Outlet gift card.


Owner of Nectar Tasting Room in Spokane, WA. (@nectarwine) Publisher of Spokane Wine Magazine (@spowinemag), author, speaker, consultant and internet marketer with Nectar Media (@nectarmedia)

23 comments on “Deal Found for Bargainistas

  1. Janet

    Thanks for the info. Adding one to my list for the sale.


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  3. Emily

    Thanks for the reviews :) It’s nice to know what you’re getting before you buy at GO!

  4. Ashley

    Just the other day I found myself staring at the grocery outlet wine wall for upwards of 10 minutes! It’s hard to pick when there are so many choices! I’m going to have to check these out next time! Thanks!

  5. Kristi

    I’ve been tentative about buying wine at Grocery Outlet. This helps, thanks.

  6. Kristy Norman

    Great info, Josh. We’re more into reds than whites, but occasionally look for a deal on jus tsuch bottles to keep the bar stocked!

    Kudos on a great site!


  7. Blends of Vino

    ooooo.. you got me on edge of my seat.. can’t wait for more reviews.. I love your honesty and spirit! keep them coming!

    1. drinknectar

      Thanks, Blends of Vino. I’m glad you enjoy them.

  8. maija

    This is fun – it would be awesome if the Grocery Outlet would print up some of you & the other bloggers’ reviews to post by wines in the stores (or at least the good reviews!). I always find it helpful when reviews or wine scores are posted in stores.

    1. drinknectar

      I agree, Maija – recommendation is always a good source of trust. Maybe they’ll read this and follow up.

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  10. Jill Hayes

    Thanks for the review – gotta love Grocery Outlet for their awesome prices! Thanks for the chance to win!

  11. Alena

    I am taking notes on your reviews. Attending tasting hosting at the GO this weekend prior to thier big sale next week. Hoping to find some of the wines you have reviewed. Thanks for saving me some money of a few you have given not such great reviews to. You are right….while I do love a bargain…it’s money wasted if you dump it! I can’t stand throwing away money!!!

  12. Stephen

    Yea I’ve bought a few wines at grocery outlet, mostly for cooking though

  13. Elizabeth Shepherd

    The GO in Portland where I shop recently marked the Imagine Chard down to $8.99 so you can bet I’ll be purchasing some bottles during the 20% off sale!!!!

  14. Joseph

    I haven’t tried any wines at Grocery Outlet yet but at these great prices I think I should.

  15. Lisa

    Buying wine scares me, so any advice helps. Thanks for the tips!

    1. drinknectar

      Buying wine can be a very scary thing. It’s not like walking into a store and getting a bud light (you know what to expect). there is so much variation from bottle to bottle, grape to grape! Stick around Lisa, you’ll enjoy the reviews.

  16. Rachel

    glad i discovered your site because of GO. great reviews – very useful.

  17. susan taylor

    I love the wine guy at our GO — he is generous with his advice and isn’t afraid to suggest a less expensive wine nor to dis a more expensive wine. Good guy!

    1. drinknectar

      It’s nice when you can find a trustworthy wine guy/girl

  18. Jeremy

    The perfect storm! I found your website by reading the Spokesman-Review on my way to Reno to watch March Madness. Luckily I wrote it down before I got there. Got back from Reno on Sun. Went to GO for the first time Mar. 23rd. Finally checked your website last night. Couldn’t believe it! I had purchased some wine that day, one being the 2007 Sylvester Vineyards Sauv Blanc. Loved your take on it, and agreed. Went back tonight and bought a variety case at the N. Spokane Outlet. Wife and I made some shrimp linguini using the Sylvester in the saute. Decided to get into some red – purchased the Rock Ridge Cellars Meritage California Red Wine. REALLY good blend of noble varietals (purchased for $5, “everywhere else $9.99). Keep it up!

    1. drinknectar

      Thanks for the comment Jeremy. I’m glad you were able to find the site. I’ll have to look for the Rock Ridge at $5


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