Aldi’s cheap whiskey is winning international accolades

Booze on a budget.
Booze on a budget.
Image: Reuters/Denis Balibouse
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Move out of the way, Two-Buck Chuck, there’s some fierce competition coming your way.

While it’s true a lot of consumers would like to upgrade the liquor they’re drinking—and a lot of companies have tried to make their liquors fancier—still many are happy to go searching for the best of the cheap stuff. For those hunters, the best new discoveries are taking place at the discount supermarkets that are shaking up the grocery landscape.

For $35 Australian dollars ($27.76 USD) at discounter Aldi, you can buy a bottle of the whiskey that just took top prize in its price category at the Melbourne International Spirits Competition. Judges praised Aldi’s Highland Black Eight-Year-Old Scotch Whiskey as “phenomenal for its price” after evaluating it on body, color, and finish, according to Australian media.

The liquor got a “double gold” award, placing it in the top 10% of alcohols judged at the competition. And this isn’t the first time an Aldi alcohol has been recognized in Australia. The supermarket’s $8 Côtes de Provence rosé wine snagged a silver metal earlier this year at the International Wine Challenge.

The whiskey is available at some locations in Australia, in the UK, and parts of Europe (link in German). It is unclear if it’s offered in the US. Quartz has asked the company for a breakdown of where it sells its whiskey globally, and will update this post when a response is received.

Of course, budget booze isn’t unique to Aldi. More than 15 years ago, Trader Joe’s made waves when it introduced its line of Charles Shaw Wines—known popularly as Two-Buck Chuck. Those products are sold for between $2 and $4 in stores across the US and include chardonnay, merlot, cabernet sauvignon, shiraz, sauvignon blanc, pinot grigio, and white zinfandel.