One of our favorite hostess gifts to bring to a holiday party is a bottle of wine. We never like to show up empty-handed to a holiday gathering and even if the hostess has already planned drinks for the evening and said not to bring anything, a bottle of wine is always appreciated.
Shopping at Trader Joe’s
Our go-to spot for picking up a bottle of wine on your way is always Trader Joe’s. They have a very impressive selection of interesting wines and great price points.
There are a few bottles/brands/varietals that we know we like that we keep going back to but it’s always fun to pick something that will go with the meal if you have a bit more time. It’s so easy to quickly google “what wine goes with salmon?” while you are standing in the wine aisle and then impress your friends with your “wine knowledge”.
We love Trader Joe’s brands of wine as well. Two Buck Chuck is actually pretty good and since it’s only $2.99 it’s perfect to use while you are cooking or to make sangria in the summer or mulled wine in the winter. We also love the VINTJs brand which is a house brand of Trader Joe’s, it’s a bit more than Two Buck Chuck but usually still retails under $10. The VINTJs Pinot Noir Rose is our go-to pick for the summertime.
We also love to keep bottles that we know we like in stock at home. Many large grocery chains offer deals for buying multiple bottles. Our local store, Ralphs (owned by Kroger) does buy 6 bottles get 30% off, and that really adds up! We’ve also found that you can stack coupons by using the grocery store’s discounts plus a cash back app like ibotta. I spend a few minutes looking for coupons before going to the wine aisle and see where I might be able to get a few more dollars off. Ibotta usually also offers a monthly bonus for redeeming multiple rebates so sometimes the savings stack, even more, when you buy 6 bottles.
Living in California makes it very practical to be members at a winery. They usually offer discounted prices on their wines to members in exchange for your commitment to buying a certain amount per year. You usually also get additional perks that even outweigh discounts like free tastings for you and your friends when you visit or free member events at the winery. We’ve used wine club memberships as a great excuse to get out of the city for the weekend and we love being able to treat our friends to tastings. The wineries often have sister properties so you can even get tastings at nearby wineries as well. Stella got married at a winery and joined the wine club to save 10% off the total wedding bill!
Subscription Services and Wine by Mail
You can also sign up for virtual wine clubs through subscription services. There are tons of companies that offer deals for your first box of wine including tons of airline miles or cash back through companies like ebates. There are also a few fun companies that have you fill out a flavor profile to determine what kind of wine you’d like and then ship based on your preferences.
P.S. this post is part of our 30 Blog Post Goals for 2018, check out the full list!
Does anyone else love bringing a bottle of wine to dinner parties? What are your tips for buying (and drinking!) wine? Let us know in the comments!