Money magazine’s Best Deals on Everything: Your guide to the latest bargains in Bordeaux, coffee, lobster and more.
Enjoy fine wine? Sip on this: Following huge markups for the 2009 and 2010 vintages — “perhaps two of the best ever,” says K&L Wines co-owner Clyde Beffa — and lower demand for less favored 2011 bottles, Bordeaux châteaux slashed prices up to 60% last year.
The trend continues as the 2011 vintage leaves distributors and retailers with unsold stock.
Mouton-Rothschild, $379 (vs. $549 in 2011
Lynch Bages, $99 (vs. $110 in 2011
Clerc Milon, $50 (vs. $90 in 2011)
Lobster lovers are in for another succulently good year. “During the 2012 season, average retail prices per pound dropped from about $6 to $4,” says Hugh Reynolds, owner of Greenhead Lobster in Stonington, Maine.
The 33% decrease was the result of both an unexpected overlap of the Maine and Canadian fishing seasons, which normally occur one after another, and an abundant catch.
According to seafood industry consultant Gilles Thériault, the 2013 Maine catch could see an increase of 10% to 15% over last year’s numbers, further driving down prices once lobster season is in full swing.
Production of Arabica beans spiked in 2012, while global demand for less costly Robusta bean coffee increased.
Result: Prices on bagged joe at the grocery store — which is usually of the Arabica variety — have dropped about $1 per pound.
Demand for knives is down 7%, per the NPD Group, and manufacturers are chopping prices as a result.
Expect to see deeper discounting by year’s end or early next year, as lower-priced imports further squeeze domestic makers, says IBISWorld analyst Nima Samadi.
Save $8 a head on dinner out – Advice from Robert Sietsema, former restaurant critic, the Village Voice
Order extra apps and split an entreé. “In many restaurants, the entrées are ho-hum: a piece of fish with a drizzle of sauce, a hunk of meat with a heap of salad. Much more energy goes into formulating the appetizers, which are cheaper too.”
…or start with a side. “Often the side dishes are much cheaper and just as big as the appetizers. You’re well within your rights to start with, say, Brussels sprouts sauteed with bacon.”
Drink responsibly. “As you scan the wine list, whip out your phone and Google the cheapest bottle on the list. If the markup is over 200%, make do with a single glass or go for draft beer.”