Many domestic wineries have had wine surpluses in recent years, and this has led to closeouts or deals through so-called wine flash-sale sites. The deals are offered for short periods and in limited quantities at average discounts of 32 to 50 percent.
The number of flash sites has proliferated in recent years, and according to the wine industry consulting firm VinTank, the flash wine market has grown to $100 million in annual sales, equivalent to 25 percent of the entire online wine market. Last month, “Wines & Vines” reported that the total number of domestic wines offered by flash resellers increased by 70 offers in January compared to a year ago.
Cabernet sauvignons and pinot noirs from Napa and Sonoma counties are the most commonly offered. A typical example is the 2009 Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, which is now selling for $59.50 by the flash site Last Call Wines—a 15 percent discount over the wine’s $70 retail price.
Some sites such as Cinderella Wine and Wines Til Sold Out are simply retailers who buy wines at discount prices from the winery or distributors and fulfill the orders themselves. Other sites, such as Lot 18 and Wine Woot, market and sell wine, but let the wineries handle fulfillment and shipping.
Today’s leading flash sites include:
Cinderella Wine—Releases a single wine weekdays at 12 p.m. and again at 9 p.m. www.cinderellawine.com
Invino—two to four wines offered daily for 48 to 72 hours or until they’re sold out. www.invino.com
Last Bottle Wines—One wine offered until sold out. www.lastbottlewines.com
Last Call Wines—four to six wines offered daily until sold out. www.lastcallwines.com
Lot 18—A marketing site that educates consumers about wineries, but also sells wines, leaving the fulfillment to the wineries. www.lot18.com
The Wine Spies—One wine offered daily. www.thewinespies.com
Wine Woot—One wine offered weekdays, with prices controlled by the winery. www.wine.woot.com
Wines Til Sold Out—One wine sold from midnight EST until sold out. www.winestilsoldout.com
WineShopper—One new offering per day, with one to five wines available. www.wineshopper.com