Waste Not

Tax Season is prime time to examine your wine budget
Feb 9, 2015

January is the month many return to the gym. February is a month for a financial checkup. Organizing receipts for tax season provides the impetus. The sales slips and credit-card statements will show where your money went, and offer insights into how to keep more of what you earn.

I've kept track of most of my wine expenditures over the years for tax records, and I've come to see those costs in the light of the wines I didn't drink: Saving and wasting are connected. If you buy more wine than you drink and let bottles slide over the hill, that's wasted money.

Paying closer attention to your actual wine needs admittedly requires a discipline many don't have. Having a cellar is a virtual guarantee you'll overbuy and save more bottles than necessary. Buying and collecting wine can be an all-consuming hobby, but as most collectors will tell you, they acquire more wine than they can drink, inevitably forgetting about bottles and missing them in their prime drinking windows.

If you want to save more and waste less, consider how much money you spend on wine that you don't drink, and how many bottles of wine you opened last year that should have been opened sooner.

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