Alternatives to Wine-Searcher
For some time I have been using wine-searcher.com to locate stores that sell specific wines. However, the free version does not list all stores. Are there other web sites (free) that perform the same service?
Interesting, but not a match to the (paid) version of winesearcher.
I just tested both with a search for 1982 Mouton within the state of California, 750 ml bottles, no auctions.
winesearcher produced a total of 28 matches, versus 17 matches in wineZap.
Top and bottom price vendors were same in both, but winesearcher produced 9 quotes below $1000, against 4 in wineZap.
"wine-searcher.com is only the most comprehensive if you are paying them $30/year. Otherwise..."
Do you expect web developers spending their time for free???
Please read my post above.
Without going to the extremes of a 1982 Mouton, basically ANY case of decent wine purchased at a good - to - excellent price will more than compensate for a $30 yearly investment.
And no, I'm not part of the winesearcher team, I'm just one of their happy users.
"Do you expect web developers spending their time for free???"
Of course not. Most sites make their money from page views (ads) and retailer sponsorships, not charging the actual user. Think google.com ... heck, even chowhound.com. Of course people have to make a living ... wine-searcher.com has chosen to charge users for full search results, unlike www.vinquire.com and www.winezap.com.
I will re-iterate -- if you want to pay $30/year www.wine-searcher.com will give you the best wine search engine out there. I won't debate with you whether it's "worth it" or not to give them the $30 for their quality product, it depends on who you are, how much wine you buy, and what type of wine you buy.
4 bottles that (sort of) cover the spectrum:
2000 Lynch bages (the high end, a solid french wine on a great vintage
)2002 bonny doon cigare volant (CA cote-du-rhone style)
1997 beringer knights valley (great CA cab/vintage - medium price range)
2006 Ruffino Chianti Classico (random whatever, popular italian)
The moral of the story is that Vinquire.com had the best price on 2 of those wines, winezap.com on one, and wine-searcher.com on one as well.)
2000 Lynch Bages (125.00 Winezap.com (WINNER), 129.99, www.vinquire.com, 149.99 wine-searcher.com
2002 bonny doon cigare volant (21.99 www.vinquire.com (WINNER), 23.99 Winezap.com, 23.99 wine-searcher.com
1997 beringer knights valley (www.vinquire.com 25.00 (WINNER), winezap.com 39.99, wine-searcher.com 104.99!
2005 Ruffino Chianti Classico (wine-searcher.com 7.00 (WINNER), www.vinquire.com 9.95, winezap.com 9.99)
The point is clear, if you want a *free* wine search engine, you are often better looking at either www.vinquire.com or www.winezap.com than www.wine-searcher.com. If you want to pay $30/year, I would bet that wine-searcher.com would win.
Back to my cab player -
best price on any of these search engines is not always real. often the wine has already been sold or did not really exist in the first place. many sellers do not update regularly.
sellers differ also. provenance is very important, especially on older wine. knowing the seller is hugely important.
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I use the paid version of Wine Searcher for business, but I always check the Commerce Corner on erobertparker.com too.