What’s good value?

A wine importer called recently to tell me he had a wine that was right-up-my-alley. “It’s good value, and that’s what you like, right?”

Sure I love good value ““ who doesn’t? But this call got me thinking about the value word and its many uses and interpretations. Often it’s something mediocre at a low price. Or something mediocre enhanced with an add-on gift. There is a fine line between good value and low quality. Low price and good quality are not a common partnership. Except in wine.

While I mainly recommend wines in the low to moderate price range, it’s not the price that appeals to me. I buy, drink, enjoy and recommend these wines because they’re good, interesting and they deliver pleasure. The low price is an extra ““ the result of a worldwide glut of wine, economies of scale, or someone’s amazing talent, or luck.

Regular readers might have observed that I’m more likely to describe my picks as cheap and good, rather than as a value. The importer’s wine was cheap but ordinary. He described it as a value ““ I didn’t agree.

South Africa is one of the most beautiful places on earth and an exciting new/old wine frontier. Until the wines develop the cache of Australia or Argentine they will remain under-priced. Cheap and good.

Nederburg produces an easy drinking Sauvignon that’s perfect for after work or weekend relaxing. Spirited and a little exotic. KWV Roodeberg offers warmth, spice and a little smokiness. Will add BBQ flavour to steaks, chops, ribs or burgers.

NEDERBURG 08 Sauvignon Blanc, South Africa 382713 $11.45
KWV 05 Roodeberg, South Africa 7187 $12.55

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