Sunday, August 15, 2010
When Two Buck Chuck becomes a financial burden you can no longer afford...
My home base Trader Joe's on Lakeshore in Oakland has a big display near the front of the store for Vista Point wines. Vista Point used to be an exclusive product at the Fresh & Easy stores, none of which I had every visited, though the closest is down in Hayward relatively near to where I used to live. Now they are selling big 1.5 liter bottles of their wine at TJ's for $2.99. To help my less mathematical friends and those whose eyes glaze over at any mention of the metric system, the big bottle is twice the size of a standard 750 ml bottle, so what would cost you $4 if you choose Two Buck Chuck costs only $3 if you choose Vista Point.
I have not tried the wines myself. I hunted around the Interwebs for reviews, and some ladies in L.A. thought the Vista Point Chardonnay was a little better than the Charles Shaw chardonnay. One guy hated the Merlot and poured most of the bottle down the drain, and merely sneered at the Chardonnay, while Tastings.com rated the Merlot at "highly recommended". Someone on cellartracker.com called the Merlot drinkable.
Here's what I know. It's three bucks for a really big bottle of wine. If you don't like it, you are out three bucks. That's a lot smaller gamble than going to see a movie like Cloverfield, District 9 or The Ghost Writer, where you lose ten bucks and two hours of your life that you can't get back.