The price war of certain wine categories on the Croatian market has been going on for years, so some wines are literally cheaper each day and more available to a wider circle of consumers. The price war began in the middle of a crisis, when certain renowned producers began lowering the purchase price of their bottled wines to the level of one euro or less, moving on to supermarkets, which massively began using global techniques of wine retail sales which don’t know of a bottom limit.
Even in very good department stores such as El Corte Inglés in Spain, it is possible to buy many bottled, mostly South American, but also Spanish wines for two to three euros, while British supermarkets are overloaded with bottles up to 4,99 pounds (let it be said the former hyperinflation of Australian cheap wines almost destroyed the Australian wine industry and halved the value of her export, as it destroyed the reputation of those wines).
In Croatia, until last year the relatively lowest prices of bottled wines were found in Vrutak and the currently almost non-existent Dobra Vina. Ilok Cellars in their chain of stores regularly held sales, with bottles priced around 23 kunas, which immediately raised sales. Various supermarket chains, headed by Konzum, also occasionally lowered prices of most wanted bottled brands by thirty percent, sometimes empty shelves so fast they literally didn’t have time to refill them.
It seems that Spar has just beaten all records in low prices of bottled wines. These days we flipped through Spar’s wine catalogue and ran into, for example, Graševina Čobanković for 18 kunas per bottle and the Plavac by reputed winery Skaramuča for 25 kunas per bottle. The Superior Belje Graševina, whose regular price is around 50 kunas, is being sold in Spar for 40, and a whole line of Macedonian bottles for 13 to 15 kunas. The popular, but for too long truly terrible T’ga za Jug can be bought for 25 kunas. Even Krauthaker’s Superior Graševina came a few lipas below 50 kunas, which is 10 to 15 kunas below its regular price.
We also came across a wine with a Bordeaux label being sold for 25 kunas, which actually explains the decision by French authorities for the areas with poor vineyards in Bordeaux to be drastically reduced so the reputation of the most important global wine appellation would not be crumbled. It will be interesting to see how Vrutak will respond to Spar’s challenge, as prices of certain bottles in Vrutak are currently some 10 kunas higher than in Spar.
For the original and more from Plava Kamenica, click here.