We have a simple rule for keeping the household shopping bill down: Avoid Whole Foods. To be sure, not every item on the WF shelves is overpriced. In fact, some cereals, pastas, and other staples can be had cheaper at WF than at Safeway or perhaps other, lower-scale grocers. But the problem is that whenever you go to WF, you end up throwing stuff in your cart that you really don’t need.

Like all of those cheaply priced wines spread strategically across the store. For if there is one paragraph that I know is written somewhere in the WF biz plan, it’s this one:

“Despite their high average income, the Whole Foods shopper appreciates a reasonably priced bottle of wine. Whole Foods must use its leverage with distributors and its cachet as a tastemaker to get the best low-priced wines from around the world. Once procured, store managers must place the wines adjacent to foods and delicacies with which they pair well. A store manager shall NEVER create a special wine display for a bottle that costs in excess of $9.99.”

Wasn’t it the late Peter Jennings who said that his great indulgence in life was having a bottle of wine above $10?