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Portugal Offers ‘Best Value’ in UK Supermarkets

wotwine? portuguese wine ukOf course we want the BEST wine. But let’s be honest, we don’t mean the ‘best’ like Magnus Carlsen is the Best Chess player in the World, or Noma is the Best Restaurant in the World.

What we really mean is something more like:

“I want the wine that will give me the most pleasure for the amount of money and trouble I am able, and prepared, to invest in getting it.”

This is one reason why “100 points” means nothing, because that wine may be too expensive, too rare, too not-like-the-wines-I-drink to be worth drinking FOR YOU.

That’s why, when wotwine? named wines from Portugal the “Best Value” in UK supermarkets, that consumers finally got a message they could do something with.

wotwine? is the awkwardly-named brainchild of Christopher Burr MW. Burr decided that consumers were being “led down a strange path” by supermarket promotions. In his mind, they should have access to independent expert opinions on what the wines were really worth, not what supermarkets claimed them to be worth just so they could then sell them at huge discounts.

wotwine? wasn’t saying that Portuguese wines were better than all other wines, but that when you compared the pleasure and quality to the price, Portugal delivers more than anywhere else in the world. That is an accolade worth shouting about.

To come to this conclusion, wotwine? brought together wine experts – Masters of Wine (MW), MW students, experienced judges, winemakers and even expert consumers, with the goal of tasting every wine available in the main supermarkets in the UK. They were not concerned with just rating the QUALITY of the wines, but to decide how much they believed each wine was WORTH.

For example, when tasted blind, the wotwine? reviewers thought the Dow’s Trademark Finest Reserve Port available in Sainsbury’s to be worth £13.50. In fact, it is currently available for only £6.50, and therefore, has an enormous 108% ‘added value’ for the lucky consumer.

Although Port and Madeira wines made up most of the wines that offered the best deals, in part because of the great deals available in these under-appreciated categories, there was still value to be found in other regions as well, such as Lidl’s Torre de Ferro Dao at £4.99 (80% added value) and Asda’s Extra Special Dao at £5.00 (30% added value).

What is interesting about this result is that while Portugal is demonstrating that it can make world class wines at the top end, it is gaining a growing reputation for value for money at other price points too. Hopefully, this will encourage consumers to explore even more Portuguese wines over the Christmas season.

Robert McIntosh

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