The first wine club was opened in 1985 in Los Angeles, and since then, wine clubs have been popping up everywhere, especially here in Australia, a land with a rich wine culture. These clubs are designed to provide wine lovers with fine bottles of wine on a monthly or quarterly basis so they don’t need to look for and purchase it on their own.
So, if you’re part of Australia’s wine lovers group, signing up for a wine club subscription is always the right thing to do.
Benefits of Using a Wine Subscription Service
If you’re still not convinced to let the experts choose your bottle of wine, know that having a convenient wine subscription offers many benefits. First of all, you can make sure that you’ll get a selection of fine wines delivered straight to your door, and focus on preparing your favourite dish instead of losing time searching for the perfect bottle of wine across many of the liquor or wine stores in your city.
Also, wine subscriptions are great to save some additional money even on the fine bottles of wine, since wine clubs often offer low prices when you buy “in bulk”, and even more discounts for the most loyal customers. And not only will you save money on wine, but you also get reduced shipping costs due to wine clubs paying part of the cost of shipping and often use flat shipping rates.
Choosing the Club
But before you decide to sign up for a wine subscription, it’s essential to know a couple of useful things for many of the wine clubs online.
Personalised vs. Curated Wine Clubs
Some of the wine clubs have many experts that choose the best bottles of wine for you, while some of them rely on different online algorithms to pick the best wine that fits your preferences. For this purpose, we can make a distinction between curated and personalised wine clubs.
Having a wine delivery subscription from a curated club means that experts and professionals will make a careful selection of your wines. Even though there’s a difference between many of the curated wine clubs, the most basic ones will only ask for basic information about the preferred colour of wine and the amount you want to receive.
Such clubs are great for lazy wine lovers since there isn’t any work you should do besides making the subscription and waiting for your wine delivery. Also, it’s great for the ones who love to experiment and discover different wines. On the other hand, curated wine clubs are not recommended for the pickiest wine lovers, since it’s not uncommon to get many wines you don’t like.
When it comes to personalized wine clubs, they’re always a more recommended choice since they rely on many quizzes to determine your preferences at first, and ask for your opinion on their wines so they know which ones you liked for the further deliveries. Also, you can easily find many personalized wine club offers where you can customize your order if you’re in the mood for something different than their algorithm offers.
After you find the perfect wine club for your preferences, it’s always recommended to check their customer ratings before you make your wine subscription. Remember that the digital era brought a lot of forms of marketing that can make even the worst wine tasting subscription clubs appear as the right deal for you.
While checking out the ratings, don’t forget to search for any issues their customers faced, such as shipping problems. For instance, after they ship your wine subscription box, many of the wine clubs won’t accept returns in case you don’t like the wines they delivered. Also, make sure you check your club’s FAQ section to search for their shipping policy since almost all of them will require an 18+ signature in person.
And have in mind that some of them will return your order if there isn’t anyone to receive it, so make sure you can have your wines delivered to your place of work if there’s nobody at home.
Choosing the Subscription
Different wine clubs will offer different subscription services, so make sure you get to know the club’s policy before you pay for a subscription.
Decide on the Wine
But before you start exploring your new wine club’s subscription policy, make sure you know your wine preferences. Even though many people go for the most basic packages of a two-bottle mix of red and white wine that’s easy to pair with food, it’s always best to think about how to make the most of your wine subscription. So take into account whether there are any sorts of grapes or regions you prefer and if you want to stay in the comfort zone or experiment with wines you haven’t tried thus far.
The Process of Selecting Your Wine
One of the most important things to explore is how your wine clubs select your wines each time they make a delivery. Have in mind that the best clubs will have experts which monitor their wines for quality and unique tastes before they wrap them up and send them to their members.
Also, some clubs offer numerical ratings from different sources on their bottles, so you can get to know how different people rated the specific wine. But these ratings can be very subjective since they can be rated high by wine experts, but at the same time have lower ratings from many experienced chefs or loyal customers. As long as these ratings are available on your wine club’s official web page, that means that they are very transparent and confidential, and therefore a good club to make a subscription to.
Many wine clubs offer different membership options, and some of them even let the customer determine how often they want to get a wine delivery, from the monthly or quarterly shipments to the different 12-month wine subscription offers. In addition to the flexible delivery schedules, you can also find clubs that don’t require minimum purchase requirements and allow you to cancel your subscription without any cancellation fees.
One more thing to consider when looking for the membership option for you is your budget since it directly affects your subscription. For this purpose, know that many of the clubs offer premium subscription packages with more perks and features than the basic packages. But know that the premium offers are intended for more experienced wine drinkers that seek the world’s best wines or hard to find ones.
If you’re a beginner at the wine’s world, it’s best to get a more inexpensive, basic package and try different wines from all sides of the world, so you can identify some of them that you want to explore and learn more about. Once you find out what sort of grapes and particular region wines you prefer, you can always upgrade your subscription into a premium one, or subscribe to a more specialized wine club.
Once you do the subscription and get your first wine delivery, you’ll make a distinction between the wines you like and the ones you don’t. For this purpose, make sure you check out if your club allows re-ordering certain bottles of wine, as well as what kinds of discounts are offered for ordering bigger amounts of specific bottles. Even though not many of the wine clubs support the re-ordering option, the ones who do may offer discounts up to 50% for ordering in bulk, so make sure you get the most of your membership and always get your favourite wine for a lower price.