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We started this section with the idea of providing readers with wine buying tips. Instead it has evolved into a section of comments about the retail trade, marketing, advertising, sales statistics and general comments about market trends.

The retail market has consolidated so quickly that our buying tips have been reduced to telling our readers to shop at the ‘big box’ outlets of Coles and Woolworths for the best run of the mill bargains. We won’t be stocking the big brand names so Glug will provide wine buyers with a more specialized range of wines, most of which will only be available on this site.

If we see a great wine bargain we will still let you know, though day in and day out the big chains give the best value for well known brands.

The Story of Penfolds Wine Storage Cabinets and Old Fashioned Discounting
Friday, 5th September 2014 - David Farmer

The marketing hype said this: "Clarke (Michael Clarke CEO Treasury Wine Estates) said TWE will launch its biggest ever consumer promotion next month. For any six bottles of Penfolds Bin Series or Icon and Luxury wines purchased, consumers in Australia will be able to purchase an exclusive refrigerated wine cabinet that stores up to 32 wine bottles at a significantly reduced price. more...

Coles Liquor Shows Signs of Life
Friday, 1st August, 2014 - David Farmer

Coles liquor (Liquorland, Vintage Cellars, First Choice) is a big business but they lost direction in the early 2000s and have since wandered aimlessly. They are not the tough, vibrant, number two to Woolworths, which we need, but instead a dispirited retailer with little to say. It is said that Woolworths make $450 million out of liquor while Coles make $40 million. more...

The Dog Days of Being an Independent Retailer
Monday, 24th March, 2014 - David Farmer

Retailing has its challenges but if you can buy the same products as competitors at a lower price you start the day a long way in front. The options then are; charge the same price as everyone else and make more money or become aggressive with prices to sell more and extend your advantage. more...

Crumbling Brand Access Fees for New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc
Monday, 17th March, 2014 - David Farmer

Goodman Fielder and Pacific Brands, both sell many icon brands, yet struggle to convince retailers that they have 'brand power'. The big chains suggest the opposite is true as strip away the brand and what is dressed up as powerful is just a basic commodity. The grape vine is a productive plant and water and sun work wonders in making fruit that can be manipulated into an alcoholic beverage which has found favour for over 6000 years. more...

Matua and Real New Zealand Being Made in Australia
Thursday, 27th February, 2014 - David Farmer

Matua Valley

Australia grows good grapes and has high technical skills in wine making and to keep this production side humming along is surrounded by scientific institutions which provide answers to problems for the growers and makers.
On top sits a complex system of judging which sifts through the yearly crop and gives subjective but useful views on the quality being made. more...

The 2014 Release of the Penfolds Bins
Thursday, 20th February, 2014 - David Farmer

The yearly release of the Penfolds bin wines is a major event for providing a quality bench-mark and an image boost for Australia. The Bins are important for the financial health of Treasury and some analysts calculate that with the super premiums like Grange and St Henri, Penfolds accounts for +50% of Treasury's profit.

From the red wine experiments of Max Shubert in the 1950s Penfolds wines has grown into a very large family tree. Most times 50 wines can be purchased. more...

Matua Marlborough and Vintrepreneur
Friday, 31st January, 2014 - David Farmer

Bill and Ross Spence

The Spence brothers, Bill and Ross, have a special place in the history of New Zealand wine as they planted the first sauvignon blanc vines in 1969 though these were on the North Island not at Marlborough. The first wine was made in 1973 the year the first vines were planted in Marlborough. more...

Service and Shopping Experience versus The Deal
Thursday, 23rd May, 2013 - David Farmer

Farmer Bros opened its first liquor store in the Canberra suburb of Manuka in June, 1975. The store was long and narrow and was fitted out in the usual manner though in the middle was a square coolroom with glass doors displaying beer and wines. The idea was that when you walked beyond the coolroom, you entered a private area, full of fancy wines, like a cellar. more...

Personal Experiences with Mataro in Australia
Friday, 22nd March, 2013 - David Farmer

'March Mataro Madness' is underway at Glug and we will do our best to get you to try this wonderful variety. We will win on this score as with every order this month you will receive a FREE bottle of really good Mataro'.

It is the business of wine and food magazines and their stable of wine writers to explain the qualities of new grape varieties. Australians are reluctant to try new styles, but bit by bit the wine fraternity chips away and overtime they expand the range of varieties that move from novel to familiar. Currently they are encouraging the adventurous to try varieties such as pinot gris and prosecco (sparkling wine) and reds like sangiovese, nebbiolo and tempranillo. more...

It's Mataro - Not Mourvèdre
Friday, 15th March, 2013 - David Farmer

Decades ago I owned a large bottle shop in the Sydney suburb of Waterloo. It's expensive real estate now but back then the hoods propped up bars in the local pubs, we often drank at The George opposite the shop, while down the side lane, Beaumont Street, the hookers relaxed between jobs. more...

New Moves Selling Wine Online
Friday, 8th March, 2013 - David Farmer

I have been at the direct mail business a long time. Back in the mid 1970s we did the page layouts with letra-set and now Ben writes a bit of code to place my stories on Glug. And this revolution has arrived just in the nick of time as the chains have the selling of wine from shops all tied up. more...

The U.S. Oil Industry, Bordeaux and Australian Fine Wine
Monday, 11th February, 2013 - David Farmer

The sudden and dramatic growth in production of gas and oil from 'tight shale formations' in the U.S. still has me shaking my head in amazement. Oil explorers have always known these reserves existed but working out how to extract the hydro-carbons for a profit seemed impossible. Where there is a will, a way will be found and small and medium sized companies beavered away in the background, I assume for decades, seeking answers. more...

Wine and Innovation Fashions Fads and Targeting Consumers Types
Tuesday, 11th December, 2012 - David Farmer

It is not easy to innovate in the world of wine. After all there is only so much you can do with the taste. more...

The Liquor Wars - Matt Skinner Appears
Monday, 19th November, 2012 - David Farmer

Matt Skinner

The year 2000 must seem like another time for Coles liquor as back then they were the king. Now they are a distant second to Woolworths; but not a tough, vibrant second with a strong customer appeal. Rather a group with few ideas for growth and seemingly becalmed, a spectator not an aggressive competitor. more...

A Black Swan Event Hits the West
Wednesday, 31st October, 2012 - David Farmer

Lion Nathan announced on the 17th October it was closing the Swan Brewery. As reported in the Sydney Morning Herald; "Lion intends to transfer its WA keg production and the brewing of Swan and Emu to its West End Brewery in South Australia and its WA pack production to its James Boag & Son Brewery in Tasmania". more...

When Does an Escort become a High Class Escort
Tuesday, 29th May, 2012 - David Farmer

"A HIGH-CLASS escort has signed a statutory declaration alleging she had sex with the federal MP Craig Thomson". Sydney Morning Herald, 25th May, 2012. It makes no sense being an escort if you can become a high class escort as I assume the pay and conditions are better. more...

The Story of Penfolds Wine Storage Cabinets and Old Fashioned Discounting

Friday, 5th September 2014

Coles Liquor Shows Signs of Life

Friday, 1st August, 2014

The Dog Days of Being an Independent Retailer

Monday, 24th March, 2014

Crumbling Brand Access Fees for New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc

Monday, 17th March, 2014

Matua and Real New Zealand Being Made in Australia

Thursday, 27th February, 2014

The 2014 Release of the Penfolds Bins

Thursday, 20th February, 2014

Matua Marlborough and Vintrepreneur

Friday, 31st January, 2014

Service and Shopping Experience versus The Deal

Thursday, 23rd May, 2013

Personal Experiences with Mataro in Australia

Friday, 22nd March, 2013

It's Mataro - Not Mourvèdre

Friday, 15th March, 2013

New Moves Selling Wine Online

Friday, 8th March, 2013

The U.S. Oil Industry, Bordeaux and Australian Fine Wine

Monday, 11th February, 2013

Wine and Innovation Fashions Fads and Targeting Consumers Types

Tuesday, 11th December, 2012

The Liquor Wars - Matt Skinner Appears

Monday, 19th November, 2012

A Black Swan Event Hits the West

Wednesday, 31st October, 2012

Queen Adelaide Becomes No Name Girl

Thursday, 28th June, 2012

The Seven Teachings of Harry Brown 1918-1999

Friday, 15th June, 2012

When Does an Escort become a High Class Escort

Tuesday, 29th May, 2012

Multi-Nationals Looking for Desirable Brands

Thursday, 3rd May, 2012

Extending the Sauvignon Blanc Brand

Sunday, 18th December, 2011

Coles Continues the War on Liquor Prices - Woolworths is Bored

Sunday, 20th November, 2011

Liquor Price War Declared

Sunday, 20th November, 2011

The Liquor Wars - Woolworths is Killing Coles

Tuesday, 8th November, 2011

The Brand Access Fee and Wines Labelled AC/DC

Tuesday, 16th August, 2011

The Good Taste of UK Consumers

Tuesday, 16th August, 2011

Wolf Blass Eaglehawk at $4.99

Tuesday, 12th July, 2011

The Battle for the Penfolds Dollar

Monday, 21st March, 2011

Woolworths and Coles Like the Taste of New Zealand Savee

Monday, 14th March, 2011

Putting the Bling Back in Champagne

Monday, 21st February, 2011

Real Wine Drinkers Discussing Favourites

Monday, 21st February, 2011

Keeping Up with the Big Retailers

Friday, 11th June 2010

It's 2010 Not 2000

Friday, 28th May, 2010

Grange Spin from Peter Gago

Friday, 21st May, 2010

What are Wines Worth and Pointing Wines

Friday, 26th February, 2010

Killing the Champagne Brand

Tuesday, 9th February, 2010

Champagnes - the New Leaders at Harrods

Friday, 5th February, 2010

Two Co-Branded Yalumba Wines

Wednesday, 27th January, 2010

Are High Priced Wines Worth the Money?

Thursday, 8th October, 2009

The Strange Case of Wolf Blass Verae

Thursday, 24th September, 2009

Is There A Connection Between Three Seemingly Different Trends?

Thursday, 13th August, 2009

Tintara - An Exclusive Wine for Dan Murphy

Saturday, 1st August, 2009

The Fresh Food People Strike Again

Saturday, 11th July, 2009

We All Love a Wine Bargain

Monday, 6th April, 2008

The Strange World of Liquor Retailing in 2009

Tuesday, 10th March, 2008

Awash In a Sea of Savee

Monday, 28th November, 2008

53 Million Cases to Many

Wednesday, 19th November, 2008

More on Grays On-Line

Wednesday, 19th November, 2008

The Origin of the Fosters Multi Beverage Strategy

Sunday, 9th November, 2008

Bargains or Not on Grays Online

Sunday, 19th October, 2008

Is It The End of Nine Glorious Years?

Monday, 13th October, 2008

Will Virtual Wine Companies Work?

Sunday, 31st August, 2008

A Story about Mixing Wine and Beer

Sunday, 17th August, 2008

The Changing Tastes of Wine Drinkers

Sunday, 17th August, 2008

The Really Bad News About Sliding Exports

Wednesday, 13th August, 2008

Wine Facts, Trends, Fads and Hope

Tuesday, 20th May, 2008

The Steady Decline of Tier One Wine Companies

Friday, 9th May, 2008

Is It All Too Hard at Fosters?

Sunday, 24th February, 2008

Who Would Have Thought of This!

Tuesday, 19th February, 2008

Thank Goodness for Aldi

Monday, 11th February, 2008

A Pleasant Day Online at Grays Auctions

Friday, 3rd August, 2007

Wine Prices, Point Scores and Retailing

Thursday, 2nd August, 2007

A Useful Marketing Lesson

Thursday, 26th July, 2007

The Dan Murphy View of Cleanskins

Tuesday, 17th July, 2007

Wine Slabs for Queen Adelaide

Tuesday, 10th July, 2007

Cheers I Hope You Enjoy the Blue Nun

Monday, 14th May, 2007

Sauvignon Blanc Sweeps All Before It

Saturday, 12th May, 2007

They Do Things Differently in Tasmania

Friday, 11th May, 2007

New Zealand Grab the Number One Spot

Sunday, 6th May, 2007

Woolworths Keeps Hammering Away

Tuesday, 24th April, 2007

The Liquor Retailer Who Forgot How to Retail - Coles Liquorland

Sunday, 22nd April, 2007

Conversations with a Sydney Liquor Merchant

Thursday, 12th April, 2007

Woolworths Charges Ahead

Sunday, 8th April, 2007

Do You Recall Recommended Retail Prices?

Sunday, 8th April, 2007

Cleanskin Shopping at Dan Murphy

Friday, 30th March, 2007

Fosters - the Incredible Shrinking Wine Company

Tuesday, 27th March, 2007

Please, Please We Need More Competition

Monday, 19th March, 2007

The Slow Death of a Great Brand - Penfolds

Thursday, 15th March, 2007

What Do Fosters and Coles Have in Common?

Tuesday, 8th March, 2007

News on the 2007 Vintage

Tuesday, 6th March, 2007

Dan Strikes Again

Friday, 23rd February, 2007

Liquorland - The Future of Retailing

Tuesday, 30th January, 2006

Australia's Top 100 Wines

Thursday, 7th December, 2006

The Return of the Price Fighting Vortex

Sunday, 3rd December, 2006

Ah! To Make a Wine with Aspirational Status

Tuesday, 28th November, 2006

The Unusual Marketing at Brown Bros

Tuesday, 7th November, 2006

English Speakers Embrace Wine

Tuesday, 17th October, 2006

What Comes After Barossa Pearl and Ben Ean?

Monday, 18th September, 2006

High Alcohols and Bad Press About Australian Wine

Thursday, 14th September, 2006

Crown Lager Crashes the Wine Weekend

Tuesday, 29th August, 2006

Rosemount Slides Away

Wednesday, 23rd August, 2006

Wiping Your Hands and Ducking for Cover

Tuesday, 15th August, 2006

Talking with English Wine Merchant, Noel Young

Friday, 11th August, 2006

The Sky Darkens for Roséphobes

Wednesday, 9th August, 2006

Doing Hand Stands at the Dorchester

Tuesday, 1st August, 2006

How Does $5000 a Bottle Sound for Ch. Petrus 2005

Tuesday, 25th July, 2006

We Did It Because We Could

Monday, 24th July, 2006

Wine Prices and Millionaires

Thursday, 22nd June, 2006

Why Are Cleanskins So Popular?

Friday, 26th May, 2006

Rosé Raises Its Ugly Head

Wednesday, 24th May, 2006

The Release of the 2001 Grange and Old Memories

Thursday, 11th May, 2006

A Retailer With a Sense of Humour

Monday, 17th April, 2006

What About the Steak Knives?

Monday, 10th April, 2006

Little Penguin Joins Yellow Tail in Top Ten

Friday, 7th April, 2006

Grange Over Priced Says Auctioneer

Tuesday, 21st March, 2006

White Drinkers Move Up While Clean Skins Take Red Drinkers Down

Wednesday, 8th March, 2006

Woolies Keeps Growing While Coles Plays Catch Up

Wednesday, 8th March, 2006

Gobbledegook from Coles

Tuesday, 21st February, 2006

Great Vintages Growing on Trees

Tuesday, 31st January, 2006

An Insight Into Clean Skins

Tuesday, 31st January, 2006

Retail Concentration Continues

Friday, 16th December, 2005

Big Box Number Seven

Thursday, 15th December, 2005

Fine Wine Price Slump Predicted

Sunday, 9th December, 2005


Tuesday, 6th December, 2005

'Two for' and '20% Off for Six' - Retailers Follow the Changing Leader

Wednesday, 30th November, 2005

Coles Performs Predictably Poorly

Friday, 11th November, 2005

The Chasm Between Woolworths Liquor and Coles Liquor Will Create Problems

Thursday, 3rd November, 2005

And the Strong Get Stronger

Thursday, 27th October, 2005

And No Wonder - The $2.99 Wine Bottle is Back

Thursday, 27th October, 2005

The Clean Skin Surge Continues

Thursday, 27th October, 2005

Could it be True - Rosé is Rising?

Thursday, 13th October, 2005

Bargain Priced, Well Made French Wines

Monday, 22nd August, 2005

A Taste of Cleanskins from Dan Murphy

Thursday, 18th August, 2005

Winestate Recomends Orlando Jacobs Creek Reserve Shiraz

Wednesday, 17th August, 2005

The Price Vortex Gathers Speed

Wednesday, 3rd August, 2005 [Sydney]

Woolworths Quietly Rebadge First Estate to BWS

Saturday, 30th July, 2005

It’s All Happening at the Dee Why Hotel, the Northern Beaches, Sydney

Sunday, 24th July, 2005

Some Thoughts for Ms. Lucas - Liquor Retailing in Australia

Sunday, 24th July, 2005

The Price Fighting Varietals and the Spiralling Price Vortex

Sunday, 24th July, 2005

What Does the Tussle Between Woolworths and ColesMyer in Liquor Mean For Wine Consumers?

Thursday, 16th June, 2005

Wynns Cabernet for $16.99 and Thoughts on Clean Skins

Friday, 13th May, 2005

High End Wines Catch a Cold

Saturday, 16th April, 2005

The Release of the Penfolds 2002 Bin Reds plus a Great Riesling

Monday, 28th February, 2005

A Good Cheap French Champagne

Friday, 28th January, 2005

One of the Best Buys in Red

Wednesday, 21st November, 2004

The Good Times Are With Us

Wednesday, 17th November, 2004

Glug visits the Adelaide Wine Show

Friday, 8th October, 2004

Shopping at Liquorland

Friday, 1 October, 2004

A Great Kiwi, A Great Italian And More 2002 Reds

Wednesday, 29th September, 2004

The Barossa Wine Show, September, 2004

Monday, 25th September, 2004

A Quick Trip to Dan Murphy's

Friday, 24th September, 2004

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