The best place to buy alcohol

No alcohol is predisposed to be sold on the Internet. On the contrary: “Fragile, heavy and expensive, it is a product that is not very suitable for e-commerce and delivery”, underlined Matteo Neri, author of the survey Le E-commerce de vin in search of profitability for in the wine cabinet Xerfi is studying. However, the average growth rate of this market is 30% per year between 2014 and 2021. And this in a context where the total sales of wine have decreased by 15% in value during the same period! Imprisonment in the age of Covid-19 is a roadster-style accelerator. In 2021, 46% of the French bought wine online.

In 2022, this percentage has not returned to its pre-pandemic level: 41% compared to 31% in 2019, says the SoWine/Dynata 2022 barometer. New habits, especially among young people and wine lovers, were used. Still according to the Xerfi research institute, in 2021, this market, including the drive, will reach 750 million euros or 9.7% of the wine market as a whole! The institute expects “a growth of 10% per year on average to reach 1.1 billion euros by 2025”.

Virtual sommelier, rare wines, primeurs…

Three economic models coexist in this market. First, the producer-distributor, the winemaker who sells directly on his website. Then there is the intermediary reseller, ie the wine merchant who buys the wine and resells it by taking a margin along the way. Finally, market place operators, who connect producers and buyers and are paid a commission.

In total, more than 500 artists wanted to share this cake and the competition was fierce. Beyond the requirements of reliability and speed of delivery, many strategies exist to stand out. The first is the use of WineTech, to develop advice – for example to a virtual sommelier, or chatbot (a software agent that communicates with the user) – to design a mobile application with high performance, to improve quality of service and remove all. barrier to purchase. Second track: propose a premium offer thanks in particular to allocations of rare wines. The third way: expand the offer to spirits and beer, which have become the favorite drink of French men. Finally, develop the sale of primeur wines; it favors the profitability of the sites: the buyer pays and only delivers after eighteen months.

100% dedicated to wine

For this survey, we selected twenty sites. We exclude large retailers, general markets (Amazon, Cdiscount, etc.), entry-level wine sites, general private sales (Veepee, etc.), as well as subscription wine offers, such as the box, which we tested in May (see La RVF n° 660).

The twenty sites selected are sites dedicated to wine aimed at the public of enlightened beginners, connoisseurs, even experts, and allow them to deepen their knowledge of wine. We’ve classified them into two categories: general sites and hobbyist sites. Each time, to test the quality of the delivery, we order a bottle, or a case when the site does not allow the sale of the unit. Result: no cracks and the announced deadlines, from 24 hours to five days, are maintained. The quality of wines, positive and negative points on each site, you will know everything. With your clicks!

The best place to buy alcohol

General sites

They offer a very wide and high-quality offer, with good labels from the main wine regions, a very serious service and regularly good nuggets. The mondovino tour is just a click away!

A high-end offering
9,500 references – 200 French appellations and 15 foreign countries – Shipping costs: €25 minimum, free from €300

Active since 1997, Millésima is essential. Born into the world of the Bernard family, it comes from the eponymous wine merchant founded in 1983 by Patrick Bernard under the name Vins des Grands Vignobles. It is now headed by his son Fabrice. This year, Millésima expects 67 million in turnover and boasts 85,000 customers in 120 countries. Two and a half million bottles are stored in the cellars of the house, including an impressive collection of large formats (about 12,500 double-magnum, jeroboam, imperial) and an excellent selection of primeurs. The service is quality and top-of-the-range, the advisors are competent and reachable by phone. The discounts offered (- 33% from three cases, – 40% on the second case of the same wine) are interesting for making group purchases.

  • Good points:
    – Possibility of building a miscellaneous box
    – Many old vintages are available
    – A wonderful collection of large formats
  • Negative points:
    – No single sales, except for expensive bottles

Italian wines… but not only
12,000 references – 360 French appellations and 17 countries – presented – Shipping costs: €9.95, free from purchases of €149

Created in 2013, Tannico has experienced significant growth, especially since the acquisition in 2020 of 49% of its capital by the Campari group. Active in France since 2021, Tannico also controls Its wide offer is qualitative, with more than 500 rare wines in particular: Jacques Selosse and Salon champagnes, Armand Rousseau, Coche-Dury, Tenuta dell’Ornellaia, etc. The wines are stored near Milan, in a temperature-controlled warehouse with more than 500,000 bottles. On the site, the “Natural wines and philosophy” tab, which is very practical, goes beyond organic and biodynamic to list aging in amphorae, vegan wine, macerated wine and “natural” cuvées. Tannico highlights grape varieties at the expense of appellations.

  • Good points:
    – A very attractive offer of Italian wines
    – Rare wines available
  • Negative points:
    – Navigation is a bit heavy

Large selection of Spanish
2,000 references – 300 appellations and 21 countries represented – Shipping costs: €6.90, free from €120

This Spanish site belongs to Drinks & Co, the market place where the Pernod Ricard group is located. As is often the case with this type of site, the offer is very broad and uneven. Fans of Spanish wines, as well as foreign vineyards, will be delighted, but if you’re looking for pretty labels and French nuggets, you may be disappointed. The ergonomics of the site is simple and efficient with three tabs: private sales, wine and spirits. The search engine lets you know immediately if the wine you are looking for is present on the site. The choice of quality/price and the organic starter is significant; however, there is no filter by vintage. 10 € reduction is given on the first order.

  • Good points:
    – Good offer of Spanish and foreign wines
    – Navigation is simple and pleasant
  • Negative points:
    – No filter by vintage
    – Some French nuggets

Closed 19
Enter the universe of the LVMH group
300 references – 6 appellations and 6 foreign countries – Shipping costs: €8, free from purchases of €150

Here, you enter the cozy and luxurious universe of the LVMH group (Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy). Dom Pérignon, Armand de Brignac, Krug, Ruinart champagnes, Bordeaux and Burgundy grands crus (Yquem, Cheval Blanc, Clos des Lambrays) and cognacs (Hennessy Paradis)… If you drink labels with a budget, Clos 19 is for you! The ergonomics of the site are smooth and efficient. We also recommend this address to those who want to please their friends: limited editions, personalization of boxes… everything is there to make a wonderful gift. The site also offers accessories, such as trays, champagne buckets, Riedel glasses, etc.

  • Good points:
    – Large labels gathered at the same address
    – Gift ideas for wine loving friends
    – Low shipping costs
  • Negative points:
    – Reported stock shortages
    – By e-mail, the customer service did not answer us

Find the 16 other best sites to buy your wines in La Revue du vin de France from December-January, on newsstands November 30. If you’re not a subscriber, subscribe to consult the magazine and our files online.

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