What You Need To Know About Ordering and Buying Wine in Thailand

 

 

 

These days, there is an abundant choice of wine in Thailand. Driven by a very large and buoyant tourism market (at least up until the last year) and increased awareness and consumption of wines by Thais, Thailand’s wine culture is growing.

 

Consumption of alcoholic beverages across Thailand is around 3.5 billion litres per year. Around 75 per cent of volume consumed is beer, followed by locally produced white spirits. Imported wines account for around 1.5 per cent of alcohol consumption – but between 10 per cent to 15 per cent value.

In general, Thais prefer strong, bold, punchy and heavier wines. The best-selling varieties are Shiraz and Shiraz blends. Imported wines come from France, Australia, New Zealand, USA, Chile, Spain, South Africa, and other countries.

 

Before any wines can be imported into Thailand, each individual wine label must be registered with the Excise Department of the Ministry of Finance in Thailand. Once the registration is complete, an import permit will be issued allowing that particular company to import the wine. Only a Thai company can register a wine and apply for an import permit.

New arrivals into Thailand are usually shocked by how much more expensive wine is in Thailand compared with their home country. It is typically sold in supermarkets and wine stores at a local equivalent retail price range of 300 baht (c. US$10) to 600 baht (c. US$20) – and upwards. When ordered in a restaurant these retail prices can be more than doubled.

 

This is almost entirely due to Thailand’s heavy and complex alcohol excise and tax regime. In addition to import tariffs, imported wines are subject to a whole range of other duties, fees and taxes:

  • Alcohol Excise tax: the rate is 1,500 baht per litre of alcoholic content for a wine bottle not exceeding 1,000 baht (retail). Wine priced higher than 1,000 baht (at retail) will be taxed at 10 per cent of its price plus 1,500 baht per litre of alcoholic content.
  • Surcharge / Special duty (US$ 10 per import lot)
  • Customs Fee US$ 50
  • Municipal / interior tax: 10 per cent
  • Health support project: 2 per cent, based on CIF/FOB value
  • Public broadcasting subsidy: 2 per cent
  • Elderly foundation tax: 1.5 per cent
  • Value added tax (VAT): 7 per cent, based on retail price.

This regime results in most imported wines being very heavily taxed. Australian, New Zealand and Chilean wines can often be cheaper because of free trade agreements which have allowed lower import taxes and tariffs on imports from these countries.

In addition, it is not always clear exactly what wine you are paying for. Even local residents find the wine labelling system confusing.

Bottles of genuine 100% grape wine feature a blue excise stamp on the cap.

 

Locally blended wines have an orange stamp.

 

Local blends are made from about half real wine and the other half fruit wine in order to reduce tax from, say, 60 % to 25 %. On the front label nothing is written in English to inform you about this. Only the word Fruit Wine on the label on the back of the bottle, written in small font-size. Legally the label must state the fruit with which the wine is blended, and this is usually written in Thai to conform to the law.

So, after you learn about this you will look carefully for the blue or orange stamp on the cap. If you want 100 % imported grape wine you will choose those bottles with blue stamps. If you want to restrict your budget, and it is acceptable to you that you will drink half grape wine, then you will pay around 300 Baht for an orange stamp.

For example, in the photo below, the label says that it is Cabernet Sauvignon from California. But the orange stamp tells us that it is a blend of this wine and other fruit. So on the back the label says that it is Red Fruit Wine.

 

However! Take a look at the photo below showing two bottles of blue-stamped wines. The one on the left is Jacob’s Creek Chardonnay. But what is the one on the right? A closer inspection reveals that it is some white wine from Australia with no mention of grape variety, although vintage 2012 is stated. From the back label we can see that this wine was blended with fruit wine made from passion fruit. It was imported from Vietnam.

 

So, when ordering or buying wine in Thailand, do take care to check exactly what it is you are paying for. If you cannot read Thai, ask a Thai person to explain that important back label for you.

Here at The Londoner, we have an excellent selection of top-class imported wines. If you are not sure what to choose, our knowledgeable manager can help you to decide.

You can even bring your own wine in to enjoy with your meal. We charge a very reasonable 500 baht corkage fee.

 

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The Londoner’s Next Boot Sale Will Be Extra Special!

 

 

 

Rain, rain, and yet more rain!

Stuck inside, wondering what to do with yourselves?

NOW would be a good time to do what you have been meaning to do for some time – sort out that cupboard, spare room, garage, or loft. And bring your unwanted stuff to:

THE LONDONER’S BOOT SALE ON SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25TH FROM 2 PM.

It’s a great way to get your friends together and have a fun afternoon whilst pocketing some cash. You can also meet people in your local community and enjoy pottering around under cover, listening to music, and chowing down on delicious grub from the Daniel Thaiger Food Truck.

You may even pick up a bargain or two yourself!

Email [email protected] to register today as a Seller at The Londoner’s next Car Boot Sale.

Free entry!

 

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The Londoner’s Spooktacular Halloween Party

 

 

Attention Boys and Ghouls

You Are Invited to The Londoner’s Spooktacular Halloween Party

Saturday October 31 – 12pm – 4pm

Costume Competition

2,500 baht Londoner voucher for best dressed adult

500 baht Toys”R”Us voucher for best dressed kid

Prizes for all kids in costumesFreaky Face Painting

Creepy Crafts

Terrifying Treats

Beastly BalloonsHalloween is an opportunity for you to be really creative.

So, wear your best costume and join us – if you dare, for a scare!

All COVID protocols will be followed.

 

 

https://www.facebook.com/events/341175200496067/

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Thailand’s First Ever Beer Advent Calendar!

 

 

Advent: “An event happening, an invention being made, or something arriving” – Cambridge Dictionary.

The Londoner Brew Pub has come up with a very special offer which comprises all of that:

Thailand’s First Ever Beer Advent Calendar!

24 different special Import Craft Beers.

 

 

The ultimate surprise gift for every beer lover!

He (or she) can open and enjoy each one on each day of the four weeks leading up to Christmas.

We have only 72 Beer Advent Calendars available this year:

  • 6,000 baht if ordered before November 7th.
  • 6,450 baht if ordered after November 7th.
  • Last order on November 22nd.
  • Pick up from The Londoner on 29th and 30th November.
  • Or, delivery can be arranged with The Londoner (at an extra cost).

♪ “Rejoice, the time is nigh!”

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Christmas at The Londoner

 

 

Christmas at The Londoner

We know it seems like a long way off, but Christmas is just round the corner!

And we are ho-ho-hoping that you can join us at The Londoner for your Christmas celebration.

We have a mouthwatering menu all ready for you:

 

 

This menu:

  • Is mandatory on Christmas Day
  • Is optional on Christmas Eve
  • Must be booked in advance both days to ensure it is served perfectly to your table.

We have a vegan option available for all 4 courses, and we can make the fish course pescatarian too. Please request either option when booking.

The holiday season is the perfect time to get together with your friends and family.

And, if you are looking for somewhere to host your staff party, then The Londoner is the ideal venue. We have:

  • multiple areas that can be used for a private function,
  • great buffet and sit-down meal options,
  • live music on request,
  • entertainment on request.

The sky’s the limit!

So call Alex on 098 065 8468, or send us an email to start planning the perfect party now!

Or just jingle all the way over to our website, where you can download the Christmas menu and a Booking Pack.

Note that all Covid protocols will be observed, and we’ll have stockings of ‘santa-tizer’ on hand!

 

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