When it comes to wine drinkers, there are all kinds of kinds. Some wine lovers are borderline professionals. You’ll find these types sipping wines from regions most “regular people” couldn’t find on a map. Then we have the social wine fans—they might not be able to name every vintage, but they know how to host the biggest and best tasting parties. Finally, you’ve got the good-time wine drinkers. Casual, fun-loving, and always ready to learn, the good-time wine drinker is always game to try something new.
Maybe you identify as a pro, a party thrower, or a more casual fan of wine. Maybe you’re none of the above. Regardless of where you fit in, all kinds of wine drinkers can find something spectacular with a wine club.
Not sure how a wine club could aid your professional palate? Unsure that a wine club could boost your next tasting party? Don’t even know what a wine club is? To answer all these questions and more, all you have to do is read on.
What is a Wine Club?
If you’ve ever signed up for a meal delivery service, you might be familiar with how a wine club works. Wine clubs send their paying members shipments of wine on a set schedule, with shipments usually arriving right at members’ doors.
That’s it. That’s a wine club in a nutshell.
Where it gets interesting is in all of the ways wine clubs can vary their services. Here’s what can change from club to club:
- Wine Selection
- Shipment Schedule
How Much Do They Cost?
Talking price can be tricky because every wine club differs in its shipment schedule, the number of bottles included, and the extraneous services provided (e.g. tasting note handouts, live wine recommendation team, etc.).
At the lowest end of the spectrum, some wine clubs will sell shipments averaging $6 a bottle before shipping costs. At the highest, a bottle may cost $30. The majority of our favorite wine clubs listed on our comparison site average around $13 a bottle.
How Much Wine Am I Sent? How Often?
Similar to price, a wine club’s shipping schedule can vary greatly.
The ratio of wine bottles included in a shipment to shipment frequency is inverse. In layman’s terms: the more wine bottles included in your shipment, the longer it will take to receive an additional shipment. Some wine clubs will ship members two bottles twice a month, while others will ship 12 bottles once every three months.
The most common shipment schedule is monthly, in which members receive 2-6 wine bottles.
Which Wine Club is the Right One for Me?
We’re here to help you figure that out! Let’s think back to the differential categories above and ask ourselves some important questions:
- Price - Start here. If the price isn’t right, move on to the next club.
- Wine Selection - For most, this is the second most important category. Ask yourself: what wines am I dying to try? If you want to try the critics’ top favorites, look for an elite wine club that sells only the best of the best. If you want to support small-time winemakers, find a wine club that ships you these rare treats. Find the unique benefits of each by reviewing our list of top wine clubs and reading our reviews of each.
- Shipment Schedule - Shipping schedules can vary greatly between clubs so if this is important to you you'll be able to find something that works for your schedule.
- Customizability - Some wine clubs allow members to control the bottles in their shipments, either by choosing each and every one or swapping out unwanted selections. Many clubs will ask members to review past wines—this allows the selection to be better tailored to each member’s preferences.
Why Would I Buy a Wine Club Membership?
Wine fans join wine clubs for different reasons:
- Adventure - Some wine drinkers want to go out of their tasting comfort zone. Wine club members have easy access to selections they might never try in an ordinary tasting environment.
- Convenience - Newer wine drinkers may not know which wines to buy from a traditional brick-and-mortar retailer. Similarly, long-term wine fans may not want to keep making the drive to liquor stores around town. With wine clubs, top bottles get shipped right to your door.
- Exclusive Access - Wine can be a tricky business: the best winemaker in the entire world may live just down the block from you, but you’d never know it if this person hasn’t had the luck to crack the competitive market. From highly-prized luxuries to underground treasures, wine clubs can help wine fans track down and access their next favorite bottle.
- Gifting - You might be more of a beer person, a cocktail king, or a H2O mainstay. If that’s the case for you, consider ordering a wine club as a gift for a wine-loving friend or family member. Wine clubs are great gift ideas for the holiday season, birthdays, or for a special surprise.
Become a Wine Club Member, Today
You’re in the right place!. Now it’s time to check out a few wine clubs, choose your favorite, and grab a few glasses for tasting.
To find a list of our favorite wine clubs, check out our comparison site. We list our top favorite clubs, note highlights and other factors about each club, and offer unique promos and deals to folks that visit our site.
Whatever you decide, we hope your next glass contains delicious.