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Last updated: November 26, 2017
What makes a great red wine club gift? We've reviewed dozens of red wine clubs. Whether they feature only red wine like Pinot Noir or Cabernet Sauvignon, just French or California reds, or only red blends, there are a gazillion red wine clubs to choose from and they're available at a host of different prices. It's easy to get overwhelmed, especially when buying this wine club as a gift, but this list of best red wine club gifts should help.
We think buying through a wine club is superior to buying in a store — particularly with pricier red wine — because of the satisfaction guarantee offered by so many clubs. This goes double for gifts where giving someone you love something they'll love is paramount. The best wine clubs will replace anything you don't like, including the expensive stuff. You'll also typically get access to wines you won't find in a store because of smaller productions and winery-direct relationships that bypass the conglomerate distributors.
This list of best wine club gifts focuses on accessible and premium red wine available through wine clubs as gifts. We didn't use price as a limiting factor because we think the best red wines show up in many different price ranges and we wanted to highlight wine clubs that consistently ship out terrific red wine.
The Original Wine of the Month Club ™ is the wine club that started it all, back in 1972! They’ve spent years perfecting the concept and always kept a keen eye on delivering value to their wine club members. Recently, they launched three new niche wine clubs, and one is a standout for giving red wine gifts — the Napa Wine Club gift. In addition to the wine, each shipment (delivered every other month) includes their educational newsletter The Tasting Room with tasting notes, including cellaring times, winemaker notes and winery background, and a place for your wine lover to record their thoughts about each wine.
About the Wine: Unlike their other wine clubs gifts, this one only features wine from Napa. There is an option for only red wine, making this a Napa Reds wine club gift. These generally aren’t Cabernet Sauvignon, rather they are red blends and other varietals produced in Napa county. Some have really interesting stories or pedigrees — like Native Son, a brand produced by Kuleto Estates by legendary winemaker Bill Foley or The Dude which is a side project by past winemakers from premier Napa Cab producers.
About the Gift: Gifts from The Original Wine of the Month Club ™ always make a great impression. They are delivered in a distinctive gift box and the first shipment comes with a free gift. They also offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee, so if your wine lover doesn’t like something, they’ll ship out a replacement at no cost, no questions asked.
Shopping Last Minute? You can create a customized gift message to download and print (whenever you want), or email (it gets sent immediately when you create the message).
The California Wine Club only sells wine produced by small, family wineries in California — no bulk wine, nothing large production, not ever. Their Signature Series is one of their two premium wine club gifts. The California Wine Club offers a terrific blend of great wine, wine education via their full-color magazine Uncorked, and their top-notch customer service which includes personal wine consultants.
About the Wine: The Signature Series features high-end wines ($45-100 per bottle) mostly from Napa and Sonoma counties, but also Santa Barbara county, Paso Robles, even Oregon. These gems are typically tiny production wines that you won’t find in stores or even at the wineries sometimes. Representing the best of California winemaking, any wine lover would be thrilled to receive this wine club gift. It’s worth noting that while this club ships almost exclusively red wines, they do on occasion include a stunning white, rose, or Sparkling wine.
About the Gift: Every gift membership from The California Wine Club includes an elegant bottle stopper, a $25 wine credit for reordering favorites, a VIP winery tour and tasting invitation, and a personalized gift card from you. Signature Series bottles arrive wrapped in paper for a classy presentation. Of course the Signature Series also includes all of the perks of membership at The California Wine Club, including access to personal wine consultants and a Love It guarantee.
Insider Tip: Take advantage of this holiday season’s rare free shipping offer for the Signature Series. Give any number of bottles and any number months and shipping is free for the entire length of the gift.
Shopping Last Minute? The California Wine Club has custom gift cards you can print or email to your recipient so they have something to open on the big day.
The Gold Medal Wine Club showcases award-winning California wines and the Pinot Noir Series is the pinnacle of wine club gifts featuring California Pinot Noir. The Gold Medal Wine Club is consistent in the quality of their wine, their wine magazine The Wine Press, and their excellent customer service.
About the Wine: The Pinot Noir Club from Gold Medal is a pinotphile’s dream. Every selection is rated at least 90 points, but typically 92-94 points and the wines hail from California’s best Pinot Noir vineyards, winemakers, and wineries. You can select 2 or 4 bottles per shipment (though if you pick 4 bottles, they’ll get two of each).
About the Gift: As a gift, we've put the Pinot Noir Series near the top of the list for two big reasons. First, we believe the Pinot Noir Series represents a terrific selection of Pinot Noirs that anyone will love. Second, Gold Medal's gift packaging is the best in the business. Each bottle is wrapped, the pair is delivered in a beautiful artist-designed gift box with a matching customized greeting card, and you can choose your target delivery date for gifts.
Insider Tip: Gold Medal Wine Club really encourages the “buy more, save more” concept by rewarding customers for bigger orders. Whether you upgrade to four bottles or buy more months, you’ll be getting more for your money.
Shopping Last Minute? The Gold Medal Wine Club has custom gift cards you can print so they have something to open on the big day.
Plonk Wine Club has been one of our favorite wine clubs for years. Their proprietor and wine buyer, Etty, goes out of her way to procure excellent, interesting, and, where possible, biodynamic wines to delight her customers. As a serious foodie, she also has chef-paired recipes for each selection.
About the Wine: Plonk only works with high-quality wines, it's a point of pride for Etty to select the best wines around the world that retail for less than $30, and then bring those beautiful wines to a market who would otherwise never see them, month after month, year after year. Each wine is distinctive, balanced, and shows "typicity" (which means it tastes like the grapes it says are on the bottle). Each wine also has character, creating enjoyment and adventure in every sip. Despite its name, Plonk does not offer cheap wine, but it's really quite affordable for the amazing selection of wine they send.
About the Gift: Plonk makes a great wine club gift for any wine lover, but especially for more experienced wine drinkers who want to discover new regions and varietals. The one major drawback is that they don’t gift wrap the bottles.
Insider Tip: Plonk’s other red wine clubs are pretty cool, so you might want to check those out, too. There is a Cabernet Sauvignon wine club which features a Cab and a similarly styled red wine each month. Similarly, this is available in a Pinot Noir option. These clubs are a great way to give someone’s favorite variety while encouraging them to discover new wines to love.
Shopping Last Minute? You can customize a gift announcement with a personal greeting, and choose delivery via email to your recipient (immediately upon purchase), or to yourself so you can print it out and present it in person.
The International Wine of the Month Club has been sending out monthly gifts to happy customers since 1994. They do a good job at selecting wines that will appeal to most wine drinkers. The Bold Red Series is their wine of the month club gift for big red wine lovers and it makes a great gift for people who prefer red wine but aren't super picky about the grape or the region.
About the Wine: For some red wine lovers, a big juicy mouthful is just the ticket. These are often big Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Syrah, Priorat, or Carmenere, but they can be found all around the world and in most red wine varieties. According to the wine club, all of the wines from this wine gift have the following traits in common: deep color and rich, complex flavor profiles, pronounced tannins, and well-integrated oak tones.
About the Gift: They offer unprecedented options for how many shipments you want, how frequently you want them, and they even let you pick which month the shipment should arrive in, in case you're super pro-active and want to order ahead. You can also choose what color wine you want. Gifts arrive with the bottles wrapped in organza bags and are presented with The International Wine Club's educational materials, Cellar Notes.
Insider Tip: Monthly Clubs offers a very cool Design Your Own Club program where you can mix and match Wine, Beer, Cheese, Chocolate, Cigars, and Flowers in your monthly gift (or for yourself). Another great way to use this Design-Your-Own club is to customize a wine gift membership. Imagine you’re giving a 6-month subscription, but one of those months includes your favorite wine lover’s birthday — you can upgrade that month to their Collector’s Series for a special treat.
Shopping Last Minute? When you check out at Monthly Clubs, you'll be given an option to email a gift announcement (either immediately or on a specific day) and you can also choose to download a gift notice to print yourself.
Want to try new wines every week? We taste wine from nearly every wine club we review and rate the clubs objectively. Then we look at which subscriptions wine lovers like you actually join each month and rank them for you on this list.
The best red wine can be pricey so pick a trusted wine club with a satisfaction guarantee. Quality & service is how you get on our list of best red wine clubs.
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!
Like most things, one size does not fit all in wine gifts. Our reviews outline the best wine club for gifts. We also have lists for red and white wine gifts.
If you know a white wine lover, a white wine only wine club membership is a fabulous gift—for both of you! As the gift-giver, you can save a few bucks since whites are usually cheaper than reds, and the recipient will get a box of happiness delivered each month, with white wines they may not have tried or discovered yet.