Costco to sell high-end wine in UK5th November, 2012 by Lucy Shaw
The world’s largest wine retailer, Costco, is branching out into the UK market, having launched a UK website selling high-end wines and spirits.
Open to both Costco members and non-members, the site, which went live last week, features 131 different wines and spirits in its range, including Cristal, Krug and Dom Pérignon Champagne, and classed growth Bordeaux from the acclaimed 2009 vintage.
At the very top end is a 75cl bottle of Taylor’s Scion tawny Port dating back to 1855 housed in a bespoke crystal decanter, which is on sale for £1,599.99.
Meanwhile, a single bottle of Château L’Eglise Clinet Pomerol 2009 is priced at £339.99, while the same vintage of “flying fifth” Château Pontet-Canet is going for under a third of the price at £99.99.
“We’re excited to launch Costco.co.uk, and hope to give to our members an expanded selection of new items, adding further value to their membership,” said the site’s ecommerce director Garth Morris.
At the value end, a bottle of Saint-Julien estate Gruaud Larose’s second wine, Sarget de Gruaud Larose 2009, is priced at £18.49, while Haut Médoc estate Château Senejac 2009 costs just £15.49.
Among the sprits on sale are Patrón Tequila, P Diddy’s Ciroc vodka, Johnnnie Walker Blue Label whisky, Courvioiser Cognac and English vodka brand Chase.
Delivery is free, and Costo’s online customers will be treated to exclusive offers.
This May, Costco’s director of wine buying Annette Alvarez-Peters caused controversy when she slammed wines as “just a beverage” and “no different than toilet paper.”
Alvarez-Peters is in charge of over US$1bn in wine sales per year.
Meanwhile, as previously reported by the drinks business, discount chain Lidl has spent £1 million developing a range of wines and new in-store fixtures to cater for a “more affluent” customer in the UK.