Most wine drinkers pick up their wine in the supermarket, most wine is consumed within 7 days of purchase, and the average consumer spends less than £5 on a bottle. Most wine drinkers also confess to being a bit confused in the wine aisle, so they stick to brands, varietals or regions they know. Tempting people to try something new is marketing’s job, and in supermarket terms, that’s usually discounting.
Hardy’s Crest is a step above regular Stamp in the pricing and label fanciness category. I have a bottle of Hardy’s Crest South Eastern Australia Chardonnay 2005 I picked up at Tesco. It’s made with fruit from throughout the region, blended to create a fairly consistent style. It has a composite cork and a sturdy looking bottle.
The wine itself is a golden green if there is such a colour. It has an intensely fruity aroma with big dollops of oak. There’s peaches and lemons and limes and pears, all of which carries through to the palate along with creamy butterscotch and some toastiness from the oak. It’s good stuff and easy drinking. There’s 13.5% alcohol, but it’s well integrated into the fruit with a reasonable level of acidity.
At £4 this is great value, at £5-6 it’s still a good buy, but at £7 it’s overpriced compared to what else is available, and racketeering at £9.
Unfortunately Hardy’s have a habit of messing about with their pricing. I’ll buy this when it’s on BOGOF, half price or anything that equates to £6, but wouldn’t dream of paying £8.99. Fortunately it’s only sold at full retail price on those days when DFS and MFI aren’t having a sale. The higher price seems to be there only to make consumers feel they’re getting a great deal when it’s on sale, a tedious trick which doesn’t help consumers gain buying confidence.