For most of us it might be enough to just shop around the aisles of our local wine cellar and pick a bottle of wine every few days. There’s very little stress and occasionally you might come across something rather exotic that needs to be explored.
In contrast, buying an entire case of wine (usually a six-pack or a dozen) represents a commitment. You are going to have many, many bottles of the exact same wine in your hands, and even for the most involved wine enthusiast drinking the same wine day after day will begin to tire the palate.
Therefore, when considering buying large quantities of the same wine, there needs to be a reasonable justification for the act. Cost and storage space aside, a few good reasons for buying wines by the case are as follows:
1. It’s Party Time
This is the primary situation where you would consider buying wines by the case. A case of red, a case of white and a case of sparkling should tide you over well during the day and the night.
It’s classier than stocking up on bottles of cheap vodka and overly-sweetened orange juice, and buying wines by the case gives your party guests a sense of consistency, without having to wonder if they poured too little or too much rum in their coke.
The caveat here of course is that you have to be sure that you know not only what you want, but in what direction the tastes of your guests lean towards. Personally, I would tend towards the younger and fruit-forward wines, but if there are some more mature palates around, think about organising a small stock of more premium wines to enjoy.
And if nothing else, you can buy a large quantity of fresh fruit for sangria.
2. The Gift
It’s probably happened to you before as well – you’re about to head off to a friend’s birthday party and you’ve just realised that you haven’t bought a present. Desperate, you go to the nearest bottle shop and buy the nicest looking wine under, say, $50.
That kind of throwaway, thoughtless gift couldn’t be accepted as anything more than insensitive. Stop being such a bad friend. Or, if you have been on the receiving end of such a gift, make a mental note to make better friends.
Sometimes wine is not the best gift idea, but if you know for a fact that the recipient is a bit of a wine enthusiast, give them a gift that will last a long time. Do a bit of research and get at least a six-pack. That way, they have the option of cellaring the wines and seeing how they would evolve over time, rather than only being able to enjoy one bottle.
One extreme would be to start a wine collection for your children:
“Start a wine collection for your kids when they are born. Add a few cases every year without telling them. It’ll make a phenomenal gift in 20 years.” – The Unofficial Goldman Sachs Guide To Being A Man
Of course there will always be the idea of buying and holding wines for monetary gain, in the hopes that they will rise in value in either the short or long term.
But usually for that to pay off you will need to be “in the industry” in one form or another. Perhaps you work at a wine company as a salesperson. Perhaps you’re a certified sommelier. In both cases, the common factor is information, knowing enough about the world of wine and how it works in order to navigate it.
That’s why your average layperson never makes money buying and selling shares at the stock exchange. Ignorance blinds them to fact that most offers are bogus. As with the world of wine, while there is a lot of good quality wine out there, it is unreasonable to expect their value to fluctuate appreciably unless you know something that other people do not.
Which is why I would like to put forward a non-monetary definition of “investment”.
Invest in your own personal enjoyment. When you find a new wine that completely captures your attention, stock up.
Invest in furthering your experience and knowledge. As you lay down your wines, take the time to appreciate them as they evolve.
Invest in your personal relationships. It’s always great to pull out a bottle you have stored somewhere when friends drop in.
I suppose the unifying theme is to invest in yourself. As long as you are getting a return on your investment, you’re doing it right.
Read more: Developing A Healthy Lifestyle Around Wine