Drinking Wine in a Recession

September 1, 2009

You would think that most people might have an extra sip of their favorite wine at the dinner table before having to open their latest 401k or IRA statements in these dismal economic times.

It might be surprising to some how our economic crisis has affected the wine business.

It seems that where you live affects wine consumption during this global recession. The Nielsen Group’s research has indicated that Americans are tending to purchase the same amount of wine as they did before the recession. The report shows that 50% of Americans have changed their buying habits; they are seeking more sales items, making a conscious effort of quantity over quality. These findings reflect purchasing patterns in the first half of 2009.

Italian wine-drinking habits are drastically different than the Americans at this time. A new study commissioned by the Frescobaldi family and conducted by the prestigious Istituto Per Gli Studi Sulla Pubblica Opinione (IPSO, or Institute for the Study of Public Opinion), shows that Italians are purchasing the same quality of wine as before the recession, however, they are buying less of it.

After reading both reports, I’m more convinced than ever that the producer is one of the most important factors in purchasing wine whether it’s before, during, or after a recession.

The Frescobaldi family that I mentioned earlier is an excellent example. This family has been making wine in the Tuscany region of Italy for over 700 years. They state on their website that their vision is.”to be innovative in the production of the highest-quality wine, highlighting the full potential of their individual terroirs.”. They have purchased 7 different estates throughout Tuscany to help them fulfill their vision.

This producer consistently makes high quality wine at various price points. Naturally their Riserva Brunello di Montalcino from their Castelgiocondo Estate is going to be priced higher than any of their Chianti’s from their Castiglioni Estate. Somewhere in between might be their Chianti Riserva Rufina from the Castello di Nipozzano Estate. I recently tasted the 2005 vintage of this wine. I can see why it has gotten rave reviews.

Once you find your favorite Italian producer that has a broad portfolio of wines, you can continue drinking high-quality wine.even in our recessionary times!

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