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What makes a certain bottle of wine more expensive than others?
Many people wonder if the more expensive wines are really better and more flavorful than the cheaper ones. Are they really worth the extra money, or are the moderately priced wines just as good, and at a better price? The expensive wine vs cheap wine debate is one that has gone on for many years. These thoughts have probably gone through most peoples minds at one time or another.
Expensive wines can be wonderful and even sort of an ego booster when ordered while dining with others. But do wine lovers really suffer by choosing a lower priced wine? Surprisingly, the cost of wine has more to do with the production of the wine rather then the taste. Most people assume that if the wine is more expensive, then it must taste better, but this is not necessarily true.
In fact, the less expensive wines are usually offered at a lower price because wineries do numerous things on the business side of the equation to make the production process more affordable. Namely, the processing of certain wines in large amounts and at a bulk rate. By keeping their production costs low on certain wines, they are able to offer better pricing to the end consumer. At times they may even grow their own grapes, or have contracts with certain vineyards that allow them to purchase wine already in barrels. In recent years, wineries have found numerous ways to produce great tasting wine at a lower cost. This is much of the reason that certain wines are so much cheaper than others.
Bottom line, expensive wine vs cheap wine… it’s all in the grape.
This is not to say that we should by any means downgrade the more expensive wines. Every wine is special and unique because of the type of grapes used to make them. The more unique the grape is, the more expensive the wine can be. When making a specific type of wine, the wine maker is faced with competition from other wine makers trying to purchase those same grapes. Cabernet Franc is one of those wines that might be leaning towards the higher end of the price scale. Mainly because there are specific grapes that are used when making this wine. Because of the high demand for these grapes, wine makers are forced to purchase them at a higher cost, driving up the final sales cost per bottle.
So the next time you come across one of the more expensive wines, keep in mind that the grapes used to produce that particular wine are very special and most likely in high demand. Being that the grape is the source and main ingredient of the wine, the higher demand will result in a more expensive bottle of wine. These wine are typically sold for special occasions when most people find it is worth the extra cost to indulge in a great bottle of higher priced wine.
The reality is that the production of wine is somewhat of a mystery that many don’t want to even think about, their only focus is on the resulting wine that they can purchase and enjoy, and this makes them very happy. However, there are other wine enthusiasts who like to know all of the details, from the beginning to the end, and even plan vacations around the idea of going to a vineyard to experience the entire wine making process.
May I suggest a so-called field trip? You will not be disappointed.
Witnessing the magnificent wine making process in its entirety can be very exciting. During guided tours, you are educated about the soil, the grapes, how they harvest them, how they pick them, choose them, process them and even their particular wine storage techniques. Most vineyards offer wine tasting right there on the premises and some even have dedicated area for you to relax, enjoy the scenery and savor every moment of your visit. Who knows, you may even get a chance to stomp on grapes and experience your own “I love Lucy” moment.
The best part of all when visiting these vineyards is that you will see the whole wine making process and experience it firsthand. There is no doubt that you will leave highly educated and knowing all the facts on how expensive wines are produced versus the more affordable wines. But even more important, you will learn to appreciate and enjoy all wines, regardless of price. Because whether expensive or cheap, nothing beats a great tasting glass of wine.
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