Last updated: April 1, 2016
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Most wine drinkers are content to open a quality bottle of wine to enhance their meal. These food-friendly wines are usually Chardonnays, Cabernets, and Pinot Noirs. Once you’ve tasted these varietals many times over, you may be in the mood for a little more adventure.
We’ve selected this list of Most Interesting wine clubs to tantalize your palate, and to surprise your inner wine geek. Discover wines from remote and little-known wine regions, organic and biodynamic wineries, and experiments from well-known vintners. Maybe you’ll come across a Gruner Veltiner, a Picpoul Blanc, or even an Alicante.
Overview: Garagiste is a term which describes up-and-coming winemakers who toil away creating artisanal wines in their, well not usually, garages. If you're someone who wants to be up on the latest and greatest future stars of California winemaking, try the mostly red wine selection of Garagiste wines from the Gold Medal Wine Club.
What We Love: We look forward to discovering new wineries from all over California. We know we're getting very good wine at below-retail prices and helping small family businesses grow.
Could Be Better: Like other Gold Medal Wine Club series, we'd really like to see more information about the winemaking and viticulture in the educational materials.
Overview: The Plonk wine club has always been among our favorites because of the proprietor's preference for quirky but delectable wines. Etty Lewensztain sources interesting wines made from grapes and regions you've never heard of (and some you have). Whether you choose four or twelve bottles you'll be glad you picked Plonk.
What We Love: Lately we've come to think of Plonk as the "Somm club" that isn't run by a sommelier. With a focus on wines under $30 that will delight any curious wine drinker, we think the value is top notch. Also, unlike most wine clubs, if you're thinking of going red-only or white-only, you'll actually get four different selections (three of each if you upgrade to 12 bottles).
Could Be Better: When it comes to Plonk we have little to ask for in the improvement department. Because the wines are so great, we'd really like to see a more giftworthy version of the subscription which includes gift wrap and maybe even store credits so gift recipients can order more of their favorites.
Overview: A 12-bottle personalized wine club that begins to get to know your preferences with a six mini-bottle wine tasting kit delivered for $6.95. By signing up for the tasting kit experience you are automatically enrolling in regular wine club shipments, 12 bottles delivered quarterly for $149 plus $19.99 shipping.
What We Love: Their best feature is total control of your account online without having to contact customer service — change the contents of your shipment, change your shipment size, have your next shipment sent exactly when you want it, or even cancel online.
Could Be Better: The wines offered in the $6.95 tasting kit have extreme profiles (likely the best way to identify the boundaries of your palate) but the experience is fun anyway. It's important to note: rating the wine triggers the first full-price case to be shipped.
Looking for a wine club subscription? We taste wine from nearly every wine club we review and rate the clubs objectively. Satisfaction guarantees, wine quality, convenience, discounts, and several other factors help us determine the best wine of the month clubs.
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Wine clubs are the white wine lover's best friend. Excellent & affordable sums it up. There's so much more than Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, so join one!
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