the bottom of the barrel

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the bottom of the barrel

The cheapest, worst, or lowest quality. Used to describe an item in a range of comparable products. I know we need to save money, but this bottom-of-the-barrel computer barely even works. Our washing machine broke down after just two months of use, but that's what we get for buying the bottom of the barrel.
See also: barrel, bottom, of

the bottom of the barrel

the worst or least able members of a particular group He described them as the bottom of the barrel of American society. There were only 40 students in the new class, and I think the admissions office was getting to the bottom of the barrel.
Usage notes: sometimes also in the form scrape the bottom of the barrel: I think the awards committee is really scraping the bottom of the barrel if they're giving this award to me.
Opposite of: the cream of the crop
See also: barrel, bottom, of