I just read an article by the wineeconomist.com describing the retail model used by CostCo to sell wines. CostCo is the largest wine retailer in the US, yet stocks far fewer wines (usually 100-150) than liquor stores.
I personally like CostCo as a source for wine, despite the limited choices, as their quality and price seems to be fit my tastes especially well. My most recent purchase was a wonderful 2009 Bordeaux from the Medoc area (accompanying photo.) This is a wine Robert Parker, Jr likes, but honestly, what Bordeaux doesn’t he like? It just depends on whether he gives it 92 or 98 points. While this wine would fall on the lower end of that Parker scale no doubt, it’s also less than $20 at CostCo and has a wonderful Bordeaux taste.
I drink French and Italian wines almost exclusively. Not because I’m a snob, but because I just like the flavors of those wines. I really enjoy California cabernets, and Oregon pinots, and wine from the central California coast, but most are too pricey. I generally pay $10 to $20 for wine, and rarely pay more–but when I do, it’s for California wines. Although I am Australian, I don’t drink Australian wines, and I haven’t found a South American wine I like.
I still think the movie Sideways was one of the best movies I’ve seen. The dinner scene in the Hitching Post (II) restaurant is exquisite–up to the point when Miles goes all batshit crazy and calls his ex-wife, that is. The best line (outside the restaurant before that meal): “…if anyone orders Merlot, I’m leaving. I am NOT drinking any fucking Merlot!” Words to live by.