How Low Can You Go? Academics Study Really Cheap Wine

gallon wineWho says academics don’t have more fun?

According to a report recently released by the University of Otago in New Zealand, “cask wine” (whatever that is) can cost only .62 perĀ  “standard drink,” while bottled water costs around .65 per drink. The report’s authors conclude thatĀ  it’s cheaper to get high than to hydrate.

Now, we know someone paid good money to fund this study, but you have to ask what these results prove. First, let’s look more closely at the numbers.

A “standard drink” of wine is usually 6 oz., or 1/4 of a regular bottle. If we do the math, we see that a full bottle of whatever they’re pouring for their standard drink would cost 4 x .62, or $2.48 per bottle. Now I don’t know about you, but I don’t drink anything that costs less than $3 a bottle.

The study goes on to say that, “When compared to rises in average wages, this meant there had been a steady drop in the relative cost of alcohol compared to a decade ago.” That means that it now takes less time for the average worker to earn enough money to get drunk.

But only if you drink incredibly cheap, horrific booze!

Aha! That’s actually the point of this study: the availability of really cheap wine has led to an increase in binge drinking among New Zealand’s younger population. The authors of the report are using this evidence to pressure the NZ government to raise excise taxes on alcohol, thereby making it more costly to get hammered.

Now this I can support. While we don’t want to force our preferences on anyone else, we want to encourage quality winemaking in New Zealand and everywhere else. There will always be grain alcohol for the die-hards who want to turn a frat party into a drunken debacle, so let’s try to leave wine for the more refined palate. Say, the ones who only drink $4 wine…

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3 Responses to “How Low Can You Go? Academics Study Really Cheap Wine”

  • eastlandgrl:

    interesting, thanks

  • Kami:

    These comments are so true. I spend a lot of time trying to educate my clientele on different styles and introduce gradual steps to get their palate prepared to appreciate and enjoy something that offers more complexity than bulk cheap wines. I also stress that you do not have to spend a fortune to find a quality enjoyable wine. Thanks for breaking down the survey.

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