Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat. I’m not one of those wine writers who scour the internet and store shelves for the best low-price wine. (I am also not a wine writer. I’m a writer who likes wine). There are plenty of bloggers who do that and do it well. There is also plenty of the opposite: those who only feature wine that’s $50 to $300 and more. I’m not that guy either, mostly because I’m poor AF. All that said, finding the best low price pinot noir was so important to me, I made one.
The Featured Wine of Episode 103, Pairs With Tous Les Jours Pinot Noir and Our Favorite Things.
Your Every Day Price: $15.00
I also made a Cabernet. And a Pinot Grigio and a white wine blend. But more on those later. Right now, I’m all about the best low price pinot noir.
To clarify, I’m talking about inexpensive pinot noir that tastes really good. If it tastes like ass, you’re going to think even $15 was a waste. Unless you’re really into ass. Then $15 is a downright bargain.
What we’re talking about here is QPR. Quality-to-Price Ratio. And the pinot I made has QPR out the wazoo.
QPR: A Nice Way To Say “The Best Cheap Pinot Noir”
First, let’s do a little math. Let’s say you and your Chosen Other drink one glass of wine per night. That’s one bottle every two days (unless you pour like I do). And that’s about 180 bottles a year. If your average bottle is $10, that’s $1,800 a year in wine. And yes, you freaking snob, 80-90% of all wine sales in the U.S. are under $10. Barefoot is the top selling brand in America.
But, you have taste buds that weren’t destroyed by meth, and you watched Sideways once, so you drink $15 wine in between your $100 Napa Cabernet splurges. That’s $2,750 on wine per year (sans splurge). Got kids? Call it 2 glasses of wine per night: $5,500 per year.
In other words, it becomes obvious pretty fast that a good wine at a great price is muy importante, especially if you can actually tell the difference between ass and not-ass. This is why QPR is so critical. Typically, the lower the price, the lower the quality. Conversely, the higher the price, the higher the quality.
The Unicorn in this scenario is the wine that’s priced low but tastes amazing. The $10 wine that you sip and then say, “I’d pay twice as much for this…and I have.” The wine with the high QPR.
That’s what I set out to find. So I could bring it to you. And then Jeff Bezos the fuck out of my life.*
The Entire Tous Les Jours Line Is $15 or Less. Yay, Cheap!
I am incredibly fortunate that in my 10+ years in the wine industry, I’ve had the opportunity to taste a lot of wine. A lot. No, I’m not a sommelier, and no, my Deductive Tasting Methodology is non-existent. But I’ve developed a palate. I know good from bad, and I’ve been able to associate price, terroir, and vintage with every wine I’ve tasted.
What does that mean? Aside from being a closeted wine snob, it means I know what a great wine at a great price tastes like. And I also know where to find these wines.
Sometimes they come from individual vineyards. Sometimes they come from overstock at wineries. Other times it’s wine found on the bulk market from a very specific source. But after tasting these wines and developing these relationships over a decade or so, I have found a way to put the very best wine possible in a bottle and sell it to you for $15 or less.
That’s right: for the same amount you’d spend on a movie ticket and half a cup of Diet Coke, you can stay home instead with an entire bottle of Tous Les Jours Pinot Noir, get a righteous buzz and watch something on Netflix. Which you’re paying for whether you buy my wine or not.
Also, shipping is free if you buy six or more bottles. You’re welcome.
The Best Cheap Pinot Is Not My Only Favorite Thing
On episode 103 of the Pairs With Life Podcast, I am joined by Friend of The Pod and all-around awesome person, Carrie Flaspohler, to talk about our favorite things. That includes the 2019 Tous Les Jours Pinot Noir, among some other nifty stuff. (Hint: There’s an appliance Carrie loves so much that you’d think the cure to misery is found when you plug this thing in. And no, it’s not that kind of appliance).
And just so you know, we’re not paid to pimp these objects of joy. Although I truly wish we were…I mean, my endorsement—and the pretend enthusiasm that would come with it—could be purchased for next to nothing. Carrie’s probably even less (no offense, Carrie).
Which raises a legit question: is my Vintner Project a profitable undertaking? Well, it’s supposed to be. But it’s primarily a labor of love (because love is what you get as a consolation prize to being rich. My cynicism knows no bounds). I do in fact love finding wines for the Tous Les Jours label that smash the QPR scale and make people happy. Whether it be the best low price pinot noir or any of the other varietals currently in the portfolio.
I sincerely hope you’ll try them!