Ah…remember last year, when those cunning, jammy 05 pinot noirs were the toast of the town? Yeah, well, times change. The 2006s have arrived, velvety is the new jammy, and that pinots looking a little long in the tooth.
Just as clothing boutiques swap out merchandise with the changing seasons, wine shops clear shelf space to make room for newer releases. Taking a cue from Filenes Basement, former distributor John Hafferty and former importer Craig Drollett this May opened Bin Ends, a discount wine store in Braintree that operates on an "automatic markdown" system. Still-current wines start out at 20 percent off, roughly equivalent to a liquor stores case discount (except here you only have to buy one bottle). Older vintages begin at 25 percent off, increasing to 35 percent after three weeks, and 45 percent after that. And then there are the bins in the back, crowded with half-price treasures. For a mere $25, we picked up a fine 1999 Gigondas, a quickly fading beauty whose supple charms, nonetheless, made it through dinner without a hitch.
236 Wood Rd., Braintree, 781-817-1212, binendswine.com.