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How to enjoy fine wines for less: Tips, tricks and an exclusive 20% off

 (Getty/iStock)
(Getty/iStock)

From the very beginning, helping people drink fine wines for less has been Perfect Cellar’s mission.

In a nutshell, here is how we did it: keeping customers engaged and helping them fill their cellars with the finest products for a low price.

With the code INDY20, Independent readers can get 25 per cent off all wines on the Perfect Cellar website.

And here’s how you can do it:

Find gems from giants’ neighbours

The wine world is made of millions of winemakers globally. Yet, only a selected few are making their way to British wine lovers’ glasses.

If you hear Château Margaux, you rightly think high quality, rare and expensive. Not far from Château Margaux is a châteaux we proudly represent in the UK: Chantelune is a tiny 1.5-hectare piece of land, which is small even for Bordeaux standards. For comparison, Château Margaux owns more than 80 hectares just for their red wine grapes.

 (Perfect Cellar)
(Perfect Cellar)

Chantelune produces outstanding wines that are recognised both by amateur and professional critics. For example, you can now own a bottle of the 2020 Château Chantelune for less than £50, and it gained a whopping 94 points from Decanter.

Whilst not a Grand Cru Classé (GCC) – a classification that dates back to 1855, classifying châteaux from 1er GCC to 5GCC, 1er being the top end. This classification had one change only in 1973, when Mouton-Rothschild was upgraded to 1er GCC – most people who blind-tasted Chantelune thought it was a 3ème or 4ème Grand Cru Classé.

 (Perfect Cellar)
(Perfect Cellar)

Another example of a neighbouring gem is Whitehaven Sauvignon Blanc, 4km from Cloudy Bay in New Zealand.

In the same spirit, it’s worth exploring alternatives to super-premium styles of wines. For instance, Crémant only really differs from Champagne for two reasons: sometimes, different grapes are used and the cost of the land is always way higher in Champagne, pushing prices up.

 (Perfect Cellar)
(Perfect Cellar)

Perfect Cellar have two brilliant examples on offer at the moment: Crémant de Loire Bois de Mozé and Crémant d’Alsace by Edmond Rentz.

Showcase the giants’ smaller projects

This is one that doesn’t always come to mind, and yet is a source of excellence at a lower price.

Château Lynch-Bages produces one of the most in demand Bordeaux wines for one good reason: they’re great at making wine.

 (Perfect Cellar)
(Perfect Cellar)

So listing Roquette and Cazes, the classiest Portuguese wine of the moment was a no brainer. Roquette and Cazes is the co-project between the families who own Château Lynch-Bages and Quinta do Crasto in Portugal.

The result is an outstanding expression of Douro’s indigenous grape varieties, vinified with the spirit and experience of Bordeaux. Roquette and Cazes can be yours for less than £30, which is nothing compared to the magnitude of the minds and experience behind this project.

 (Perfect Cellar)
(Perfect Cellar)

Another example is Domaine de l’Ostal Rosé 2022, Languedoc-Roussillon wine project by the owners of Château Lynch Bages, costing just £14.95.

Offer the best discounts on volume

Nothing new here; it’s a principle many other merchants follow. What makes Perfect Cellar’s discount volume offering stand out from the crowd are a few selected wines.

What often pushes prices up in wine is the ageing element. The older a quality wine, the pricier. How would you feel if you could get your hands on a 15-year-old wine, for just £25 a bottle? It’s a real bargain.

 (Perfect Cellar)
(Perfect Cellar)

For instance, Grangehurst Cabernet Sauvignon – Merlot 2008. Its single bottle price is currently £31.45, down to £25.16 when you buy a case. It’s a steal!

All our carefully selected and limited-in-time case deals are available here.

For example, you’ll find there a 20 per cent discount on the Château Chantelune described above, when buying a case of the 2019, you’ll save £9.20 per bottle.

Work with today’s iconic producers, and bet on the next generations

When in their early years, prices of rising star winemakers’ wines are low compared to the quality they produce. Betting on them can bring excellent wine stories for the future, as well as building a lovely selection of top end wines for a decent price.

In 2023, we welcomed in our portfolio two rising star winemakers and one already rocking the wine world. Starting from the latter:

Orin Swift: quintessential American wines

Dave Phinney makes wines that no one can forget. From the arty labels, to the stories behind each wine produced, via an out of this world quality.

Today, Orin Swift wines have reached some heights with wine priced on average around £50. A collection worth exploring.

Angus Paul: South Africa’s next titan

Angus Paul has a passion for South African heritage varietals, focussing on Chenin Blanc, Pinotage and Cinsault, and believes in minimal intervention winemaking – a combination that clearly works well.

A newcomer, it’s only a matter of time before his wines are discovered by critics and exposed to the world. In fact Tim Atkin, a Master of Wine, already gave him excellent scores. These are wines to try and talk about.

Visit perfectcellar.com to embark on a journey of discovery, where innovation meets tradition, and every sip tells a unique story.

In association with Perfect Cellar: The Independent works with Perfect Cellar to bring readers wine choices and will earn commission if readers choose to buy their wines via a link from this independent.co.uk article