Winc vs TastingRoom.com

Not sure which personalized wine subscription you want to join? This page compares Winc and TastingRoom.com side-by-side using my detailed ratings system. The ratings are based on my experiences with each club — including tasting the wine over multiple shipments.

Which is better, Winc or TastingRoom.com?

After receiving several shipments from both wine subscriptions, I definitely prefer Winc. It has more personalization options, better prices, and better wine. This page explains, in great detail, why Winc is better than TastingRoom.com. See why.

What are the key differences between Winc and TastingRoom.com?

The biggest differences between Winc and TastingRoom.com are: Cost per shipment, Satisfaction guarantee, Number of bottles per shipment, Quality of wine, Price of wine, Educational materials, Convenience features, Giftworthiness

What are the key similarities between Winc and TastingRoom.com?

Winc and TastingRoom.com are quite similar in these areas:

FYI: I find great wine deals so you don’t have to. To keep me on the hunt, I earn a commission when you buy wine based on my recommendations.

Winc

WINC Wine Club

TastingRoom.com

TastingRoom.com
Do they ship to you?
AZ CA CO CT DC FL GA ID IL IN IA KS LA ME MD MA MN MO MT NE NV NH NJ NM NY NC ND OH OK OR PA SC SD TN TX VT VA WA WV WI WY AZ AR CA CO CT DE DC FL GA ID IL IN IA KS LA ME MD MA MI MN MS MO MT NE NV NH NJ NM NY NC ND OH OR PA RI SC SD TN VA WA WV WI WY
Overall rating
This rating reflects all of the wine club elements below and is weighted for personalized wine clubs.
Winc TastingRoom.com
4.6 stars 2.3 stars
Wine styles
Choose any: red, white, rosé, sparkling, sweet, and cider Choose any: Red, white, or mixed with an option to add rosé & sparkling
Wine regions
Choose either or both: USA and International Choose either or both: USA, International
What to know
Winc is an algorithm-based personalized wine club, but they let you pick your own wine, too. By delivering a range of wine grapes, regions, and styles, Winc is always a top contender for a personalized wine subscription.

One of Winc’s strong suits is their winemaking team. Headquartered on California’s Central Coast, many of their wines are made with grapes from the area, where high-quality vineyards and less-common grape varieties are de rigeur.

Some of the changes to their business model seem a little unfriendly to their customers, particularly that there is a minimum monthly charge but that unspent credits are non-refundable.
Firstleaf is an algorithm-based personalized wine club where you have limited ability to intervene in the selection. By delivering a range of wine grapes, regions, and styles, Firstleaf is always a top contender for a personalized wine subscription.

One of Firstleaf’s strong suits is their huge breadth of inventory. There are hundreds of different wines available at any time, increasing the odds you’ll get something you like.

Firstleaf relies heavily on slick marketing which says their wines all being award-winning, but this isn’t a good measure of a wine club.
Best wine clubs
The editorial lists where I include this wine club and its ranking on that list.
Winc TastingRoom.com
This wine club is not on any lists

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A Personalized Wine Subscription

Personalization Rating
This rating reflects the degree of personalization available, not how well I think they do at matching wines to my taste preferences. Why? Each service requires a number of shipments before they hone in on your tastes (usually at least 3 shipments) and the quality of the personalization is, well, personal. Some services might be really good at your tasting profile but terrible at mine (and vice versa). This is why I don’t rate the ability of wine clubs to personalize your selection, rather I share my own experiences and let you be the judge.
Winc TastingRoom.com
5 stars 4 stars
Winc memberships begin with a personalization quiz. While you can rely on their algorithm to choose your wine according to the preferences stated in your quiz, you can also choose every bottle in every box. Order as much or as little as you want each month (above the minimum 4 bottles).

The matching power of the Winc algorithm is more limited than some others because they have a smaller inventory of wine to choose from, but your ability to choose your own wine is a big plus on personalization.

I like that I can choose my own wines from Winc depending on what looks interesting (the ultimate in personalization). I do not find their recommended wines match my actual preferences.
TastingRoom brags about being the first personalized wine subscription, and their initial approach — which was widely panned by customers — is still their approach. They send you a tasting kit with miniature bottles which you rate, so they can get a sense of what you like to drink.

Other than the algorithmic personalization tied to your "tasting profile," your ability to further personalize your shipments is limited.

I never found my recommended wines matched my palate well.

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At Signup

Winc TastingRoom.com
Number of Bottles
3 (minimum bottles per order) 6
Delivery Frequency
Monthly Monthly
Introductory Offer

Exclusive Deal For You Join today and get four bottles for $24.95 and free shipping. Click for This Deal.

You must accept their Tasting Kit for $14.99 as part of your first shipment, but they give you a 33% discount on your first shipment (worth $22.50)

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Subscription Cost

Winc TastingRoom.com
Winc (3 bottles) TastingRoom.com (6 bottles)
Total Price per Shipment
You deposit $59.95 each month and spend as much of that (or more) as you wish. If you don’t use all of your credits in a given month, they roll over to the next month. $94.99
Price per Bottle Including Shipping
Variable (You choose your wine and how many bottles) $15.83
Price per Shipment
Variable (You choose your wine and how many bottles) $75.00
Shipping Cost
Shipping is $9.99 for orders of 3 bottles. Shipping is free for orders of 4 or more bottles. $19.99
Price per Bottle Before Shipping
$12.99 - $29.99 (You choose your wine) $12.50

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Wine Ratings

Winc Wine Review TastingRoom.com Wine Review
Quality of Wine
This rating reflects how the wine is sourced and produced, as well as how it compares to similar wine clubs.
3.5 stars 3 stars
Winc wines are "private label" of generally equal quality to similarly-priced wine clubs. Winc offers wine at a variety of prices and the quality varies by price. Their cheapest white wines and rosés are 4-star wines. Their cheapest red wines are 3 star wines. The more expensive wines are generally of better quality and their international selection is generally a better value than their California selection. Over the years I’ve tried many wines from TastingRoom.com and I almost always find them to be of average quality. They tend to taste too similar to me (meaning they don’t taste like the grapes on their labels).
Price of Wine
Winc TastingRoom.com
4 stars 2.5 stars
Winc sells their wine at retail locations (like Whole Foods), hotels, restaurants, and on their website without a membership. Members pay discounted prices as compared to these retail locations. The discount varies depending on the wine, but you never pay "full price." As the wines from TastingRoom.com are all private label, there is no way to verify if their prices are fair. From a quality perspective, I find their wines a bit overpriced for what you get.

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Additional Ratings

Satisfaction Guarantee
This rating reflects the quality of the club’s satisfaction guarantee, not my guarantee of your satisfaction.
Winc TastingRoom.com
5 stars 5 stars
If you don’t like a wine you receive, you can contact customer service to get a credit applied to your account.

"If you are not completely satisfied for any reason, please let us know immediately. We will gladly credit Winc Members the full value of your bottle towards another wine of your choosing in your next shipment."
If you don’t like a wine you receive, you can contact customer service to get a credit applied to your account.

"Everyone’s palate can be different, and we want to be sure that the premium wines we send delight you. So, if a wine doesn’t meet your expectations, please let us know and we’ll give you full credit toward your next retail purchase in our Bottle Shop."
Customer Service Record
This rating is a mix of my own experiences with their customer service team and general ratings from across the web over time.
Winc TastingRoom.com
3 stars 1 stars
Over the years, Winc has had some unfriendly-to-the-customer policies regarding cancelling and credits, as well as shipping problems. These problems seem to persist, most notably with service not actually being cancelled when the customer thought it was. TastingRoom.com has an abysmal online customer service record. This frequently stems from people who ordered the tasting kit and didn’t know they were signing up for a membership. Their new website makes it clear you are joining a wine club and they automatically add the tasting kit to your first order.
Educational Materials
This rating reflects how much information you get about the wine you receive.
Winc TastingRoom.com
3 stars 2 stars
Winc’s attitude about wine education is that they want to be your nerdy wine friend who doesn’t overhwelm you with nerdy information. The information you get about each wine is only available online. Their wine profile includes body, sweetness, alcohol, winemaking (vegan, low sulfur, low sugar, sustainable, etc.), fruit, earth, and wood (oakiness). I wish they didn’t hold back so much of that nerdy information about the actual grapes/vineyards from where the wine originates. The tasting notes for TastingRoom.com are all online. The new website just launched and there is very little info about each wine. Definitely not enough to help you learn about the wine you’re drinking.
Convenience
A subscription should be easier than shopping at the store. That means you have control over when and where deliveries occur and that it is easy to make changes to your account online.
Winc TastingRoom.com
4.5 stars 3 stars
Choose a delivery date?
Yes Yes
Skip a shipment any time?
Yes, skip shipments whenever you want Yes, skip shipments whenever you want
Fully manage account online
Yes Yes
Cancel online
No No
Choose alternate delivery location
Yes No
Get SMS delivery updates from the club
Yes No
Get email delivery updates from the club
Yes Yes
Email reminders before card is charged
Yes Yes

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Available Upgrades

Winc TastingRoom.com
Case discount
Buy 12 bottles at a time and save an extra 10% n/a
Pre-pay for credits
Buy your Winc credits ahead of time and save up to 20% n/a
Wine upgrades
Winc offers wine at a variety of prices, you can choose more expensive wines whenever you want n/a
Upgrade to 12 bottles
n/a Get 12 bottles for $150 (2 each of 6 different wines)
Switch delivery frequency
n/a Switch to deliveries every other month or quarterly, in addition to delivery on demand

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Good for Gifts?

Winc TastingRoom.com
Giftworthiness
(2.5 stars) (2.5 stars)
Gift options?
Yes Yes
Gift format
Electronic gift card Electronic gift card
Gift wrap
No No
Gift notification
Yes, an email is sent at time of purchase Yes, an email is sent at time of purchase

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Jessyca Frederick

Review by: Jessyca Frederick

After 12+ years trying 1000s of bottles from 100+ different wine clubs, Jessyca knows what it means to be a wine club worth joining. Her reviews can help you find a great wine club for you (or to give as a gift) at any budget and for any wine preference.