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I've been accused of not ever posting a tasting note. It's mostly I'm intimated by the quality of the notes on this forum. Anyway I was going to a boardgaming event and wanted to bring something to drink. I saw this at Costco and I'm always on the look out for bargain Champagnes.

Up till now I've only tried one Costco wine which was OK. The Champagne started out promising, straw color and a nice stream of semi-fine bubbles. The aroma was missing the yeast smell I enjoy, but there was faint aroma of citrus fruits. The taste--eh.

I don't think there's a good $20 Champagne.
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Originally posted by snipes:
Perfectly valid and helpful TN, so congratulations. Smile I'm not sure I would ever buy a Kirkland Champagne (was it actually Champagne?), but now you've confirmed for me that my initial impression would have been a good one. Thanks for the tip.

Indeed it is actually Champagne--Costco's pretty good at using correct designations for all their wines. They even list the vineyards sourced for this bottle--so I was hoping for a magical surprise--no such luck.
Originally posted by wine+art:
Originally posted by The Old Man:
I've been accused of not ever posting a tasting note... rightfully so. Razz

I don't think there's a good $20 Champagne.

OM, are you a fan of Champagne in general?

Absolute, I find few Sparking Wines I like. Always looking for quality in the $50 range (or a little more.) Suggestions welcome.

"rightfully so." Now that I've dived in, without being mocked, I might screw up my courage a little more.
I currently am working on my second bottle of Kirkland 20yr old single malt scotch, it's a speyside. It's quite good, but not up to the quality of a good 18 year Macallan. Having said that it's only $40 per bottle, and it's better than most other $40 scotches out there. This one is not Macallan. It's hard to know who's it is.

I have had the 18 yr fine oak Macallan that had a kirkland label, but it's been a few years. That one was fantastic.

I've also had some decent Kirkland CdP and Napa Cab. I'm not shy to try the Kirkland wines, it's not as if they have Costco people out making the wines, they have producers bottle for them. Sometimes they're good, but more often they're average.
I just have to wonder why someone like Macallan would sell any of their 18 or 20 year old scotch to Costco to put on their brand label.

If the 18 year old scotch were any good, why wouldn't Macallan just bottle it and sell it themselves? Does Macallan have so much 18 year old whiskey sitting around that they have to dump it by selling it to Costco?
Rothko- same answer with any brand merchandise- market volume! Why does Crest need to sell toothpaste at Costco when they are the market leader at every other store? Or do you believe that toothpaste and scotch are that dramatically different from a marketing standpoint? They really aren't, it's just a matter of degrees.

Macallan can sell more product at a lower price by doing it this way. If they simply undercut liquor stores with lower prices at Costco then the liquor stores and distributors are pissed off. This was it's Macallan without being labelled as such.

Correct me if I am wrong, but Crest doesn't sell at Costco as "Kirkland Brand Toothpaste." They sell it as "Crest."

I understand why Macallan would want to sell "Macallan 18 Year Old Scotch" (or whatever the brand name is) at Costco. But I don't understand why Macallan would enter into a deal whereby they sell Costco bottles of Scotch that don't say "Macallan", but say "Kirkland" instead. Rather than increase market volume, Macallan is instead creating a separate competing product. Someone walking into a Costco might prefer to buy the $40 Kirkland scotch rather than the $80 Macallan 18 Year Old Scotch.

The difference between toothpaste and 18 year old scotch is that Crest can very easily increase production of toothpaste if Costco wants to buy more of their product. I assume (and again, I may be wrong) that there is a limited amount of 18 year old Macallan scotch, and that it isn't easy to increase production.
Originally posted by grossie:
Rothko- same answer with any brand merchandise- market volume! Why does Crest need to sell toothpaste at Costco when they are the market leader at every other store?

grossie - There's a big difference between Crest toothpaste and 18 year old scotch. The critical difference is supply. Crest can always make more toothpaste as quickly as they need to. Macallan cannot immediately create any more 18 year old scotch and pump it into the market.

Originally posted by Rothko:I was at Costco this weekend and they were selling a Kirkland chateauneuf du pape. I did not buy.

They also had Kirkland small batch bourbon and a Kirkland 18 year Scotch. Didn't buy...

I almost bought it too on Sunday. As for the Scotch now that they're selling so many name brands no need to buy Kirkland. I'm a peaty fan so I like Lagavulin.
Except I think there's a lot of scotch out there, probably more that we think. They must create the perception of rarity in order to charge more for the old rare 18 year old scotch.

Anything you see that's labeled Kirkland is made by someone for them, often the original manufacturer. (like Crest making Kirkland brand toothpaste). It's a well known marketing ploy. You cannibalize your own brand but you also cannibalize the competitors so there is a net gain in market share.

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