Points and Miles: How to Get 5X for Wine

Many credit cards give 5X cash or points for purchases in grocery stores.  In many states, including  New York state, you cannot buy wine or alcohol (other than beer) in supermarkets or convenience stores – you can only buy wine in Liquor Stores.  The issue thus is whether it is possible to get 5X cash or points on purchases of  bottles of wine in New York state.

IT IS! (hiccup!)

There is one Trader Joe’s Wine Shop in New York City.  It is located on 14th Street just doors away from the regular Trader Joe’s store.


You can use Trader Joe’s gift cards at their Wine Shop, so I generally buy gift cards at the regular Trader Joe’s store (which codes as grocery) and then use the gift cards at the Wine Shop down the block.  This enables me to get 5% cash back on my American Express Blue Card.  The other day, the line at the regular Trader Joe’s store was too long, so I made my purchase at the Trader Joe’s Wine Shop directly on my American Express Blue Card.  Guess what? It coded as grocery. Voila – a wino’s delight – 5X on wine.

On the Upper West Side, at 808 Columbus Avenue, the Whole Food Store has an attached wine store.


I have used Whole Food gift cards there, which means that, if you buy wine at that store you should be able to get 5X by using Whole Food gift cards.  Additionally, (1) there are frequent American Express sync deals for Whole Food Stores, and (2) gift cards for Whole Food stores can be purchased at many grocery and office supply stores.   I have not tested out whether a direct purchase using a 5X credit card at the wine store register will code as grocery or something else.

It is expensive to live (and drink) in New York City.  So whether it’s  red or white, at least I can drink up knowing  that my wine purchases earn 5X cash or points.  What is the scenerio in your city/state?



  1. Will Run For Miles says

    I’m guessing it would. But if there’s any doubt, you can always buy the gift card in the main store, then use it at the Wine Shop. (p.s. Heather I always laugh when I see your email address!)

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