The Strategic Location Where Trader Joe's Keeps Its Best Wine
  • Dec. 7, 2022 12:02 pm EST

There are very few occasions that can't be improved by a bottle of wine. This is especially true when you score a great bottle for an affordable price, which explains the massive appeal of Trader Joe's. More than just a grocery store, Trader Joe's has a commitment to providing ethically sourced, quality items while keeping costs manageable. With a nice selection of snacks, staples, and gadgets, the store is also well known for its affordable and surprisingly good wine selection.

While Charles Shaw Wine, aka Two Buck Chuck, is the store's most famous alcoholic offering, that's not all that awaits shoppers. There are plenty of bottles at a slightly higher price point that also promise an amazing drinking experience. Parade reviews a few of these selections, which range from peppery reds to buttery Chards. And like the other items within the store, the staff is ever meticulous about which products make the final cut.

Trader Joe's unique brand strategy

When it comes to products, Trader Joe's is not like other grocery stores. Its unique brand approach is what sets the store apart from the pack, as it allows them to offer affordable, high-quality goods that shoppers absolutely love. According to the Trader Joe's website, prospective products are rigorously tested prior to being stocked on shelves to ensure they meet the high standards of customers. Trader Joe's also prefers purchasing products directly from suppliers instead of stocking shelves with name brands, which is why items are so affordable.

Devotees of Trader Joe's love getting the inside scoop on the store and its inner workings. The store is so popular among consumers that it even has its own podcast, aptly titled Inside Trader Joe's. One episode focused on the store's wine selection and how choosing a bottle can be a little intimidating for the uninitiated. It also offered some insight to shoppers on the hunt for a high-quality bottle of red or white.

Where to find the best bottles in the store

During the episode called "Trader Joe's Wine Wonderings," hosts Matt Sloan and Tara Miller set out for the Santa Barbara location to talk to the staff about wine. After discussing staff recommendations, Miller makes an interesting observation. At about minute 17:13, Miller states that the "stacks" in the store typically contain the wines that sell the quickest, which means they're the most popular among shoppers. Stacks refer to special displays usually situated at the end of the aisles.

Also known as endcaps, these displays are used to call attention to a product and attract customers to it. However, Sloan explains that Trader Joe's doesn't sell store space to brands like other retailers. In this case, a company may insist that its products occupy an endcap or stack, regardless of quality or value to the customer. Instead, Trader Joe's allows its staff to decide what gets its own display. These decisions are largely based on product quality, which takes some of the guesswork out of the wine selection.