What is the point of joining the best premium wine club? Isn’t it just somebody charging a subscription fee for something you can buy in grocery stores?
Joining a fine wine club is not like joining other subscription boxes where they mail you things you can buy in shops. Wine clubs, through membership fees, buy consignments of rare and very expensive wines in bulk. They then send the wines with their members at a price below retail. Each member, therefore, gets premium bottles of rare wine at a fraction of its normal cost.
The Best Premium Wine Clubs
This list is in no particular order, so the wine clubs have not been ranked. Each wine club has been briefly described, followed by its premium wine club membership plan. Check out the websites of each wine club because they have multiple membership plans, and many of the plans are customizable.
When joining a premium wine club, you want to make sure you are getting value for what you are paying each month. We feel the high-end wine clubs we list below deliver on their promise of delivering high quality and unique wines to you. While you can certainly find more affordable options, these clubs reward the true wine lover.
The California Wine Club
Through a process of bulk-buying from smaller family producers, this company has been able to unearth some gems in the past. In many cases, their buying policy means that some of their wines are almost exclusives simply because the California wine club bought out a small producer’s entire stock.
You get two bottles per shipment, and you can have shipments every month, quarterly, or every other month. You get wines aged between eight and twelve years that have been stored in stringent, temperature-controlled conditions. That's what makes this the best premium wine club for cabernet lovers.
When you buy a membership, you get two Napa Valley Cabernets, a guide to the sending winery, and access to a personal wine consultant. You get discounts if you reorder your favorite wines, low shipping costs, and a satisfaction guarantee. Prices vary between shipments, but you can cancel your subscription at any time.
Cost Per Month: The price of shipments can vary based on the wines they ship that month. On average this premium wine club charges $231/shipment for two bottles.
Shipping: The price of shipping two bottles is included in the club price.
Return Policy: California Wine Club offers a "love it" guarantee. They describe their promise as follows, "If you don't enjoy a bottle you receive from us, we will immediately send a replacement or refund your money. You don't even have to send the bottle back – really."
Click here to join the California Cabernet Wine Club
Cellars Wine Club
This company is a strong contender for the best fine wine club. They aren't quite the best, but their offering is outstanding, and they are up against some rather stiff competition. If you are slowly becoming a wine connoisseur, then this is the group for you.
Set your subscription using their easy online tool, and receive two bottles of wine per month. You get tasting notes on each wine, and you may set your wine preferences so that you are more likely to receive wines that you really enjoy. There is a satisfaction guarantee, and you can cancel your subscription at any time. Their premium club subscription is the cheapest and most popular, but their 90+ point club is the most highly-rated.
Cost Per Month: The 90+ Club from Cellars costs $79 per month for two bottles.
Shipping: The price of (standard) shipping is included in the club price.
Return Policy: They will replace any bottle that doesn't taste right with no questions asked.
Click Here To Join The Cellars 90+ Premium Wine Club
Gold Medal Wine Club
If somebody claims this is the best fine wine club among the ones listed here, then you would have a hard time proving them wrong. Their prices are very high, but every bottle you receive is exquisite. They note the number of bottles that were produced in order to show you how exclusive your wine is. This wine club is for people who know and love their wines.
With this subscription, you only get access to wines that are rated 93+. That's one reason they are on our list of the best premium wine clubs.
This wine club sends you two bottles that are almost always of red wine. You can select your number of shipments, though you may only be able to select quarterly shipping because of limited supplies. You may also pay a little extra for a Diamond Plus bottle, which is yet another highly-rated wine. The company claims its diamond wine club is limited to 500 recipients, so you may have to wait to get on their list.
Cost Per Quarter: The price of this exclusive wine club varies depending on the bottles they ship. The price typically ranges from $175-205 for two bottles.
Shipping: Shipments generally arrive in 3-5 days and there is a charge for shipping.
Return Policy: They don't explicitly offer a return guarantee. You are free to cancel your membership at any time.
Click Here To Join This Top Shelf Wine Club
Wine of the Month Club
Somehow, the Wine of the Month Club has become part of the cultural zeitgeist in the wine community; most probably through drip marketing. The company is very good at managing its online reputation, and it has a very large social media following, especially on Facebook.
This online popularity means more members, which means more buying power, which results in better wines for their members.
In essence, you are buying the Pinot Noir series membership based on the wine of the month’s reputation. They are wine experts, and they claim to have curated hundreds of Pinots from dozens of regions.
You will be sent very best wines if you pay for their “2-Bottle Club Reds Only” membership. With this membership, you will receive two different bottles of red wine every month, every other month, or every third month. It is a deliver-until-canceled membership, which means that getting out of the membership is fairly easy.
Cost Per Month: The cost varies based on the number of bottles you want to receive each month. On average, each bottle costs $100.
Shipping: Shipping fees vary depending on the delivery address. Shipping to much of the country is included in the price, but you need to check their online calculator to be sure.
Return Policy: They will replace or refund the cost of any bottle you believe doesn't taste right.
Join This Premium Pinot Noir Wine Club By Clicking Here.
SomMailier is not the cheapest wine club, nor is it the best but it’s a great place to get French wine. Upon occasion, however, the wines they send are a bargain. You may receive bottles from some amazing batches of French wine, and in many cases, to repeat the experience, you would have to go to France and pay a producer a darn sight more than you paid SomMailier.
If you opt for a C’est La Vie membership, you get three bottles of wine every three months. You can choose to have red and white, only red, or only white wine. Each shipment also comes with information about the producers of the wine.
The SomMailier company puts a lot of effort and thought into the wines they pick, but they do a very bad job of explaining that fact on their website. For example, the “Wine of the Month” wine club has videos on their website explaining how they pick their wines and why you should trust them, whereas the SomMailier landing pages seem to think you already know and trust their brand.
Cost Per Month: $99 per quarter for 3 bottles.
Shipping: Shipping charges are around $15 for this premium wine club.
Return Policy: 100% guarantee. If you get a bad bottle, they will refund your money or replace the bottle.
You Can Learn More About Joining The SomMailier Premium Wine Club Here.
They promote themselves through various events, most of which their members may attend. But, their biggest selling point is their access to very rare and premium wines. If your wine-connoisseur friends say the Panel is the best fine wine club, you would be hard-pressed to argue. Some of the wines they have featured in the past will never be available again.
Exclusive Wine Club Memberships
They have the Exploration Club, which is the cheaper option, and the Elite Club membership that will cost you $299 a month. The exploration club sends three bottles per month, and the elite club sends six bottles of wine per month. The selling point for this company is their wines, but they also tack on a series of events and functions onto their memberships. Such functions are only of benefit to people who live near the Panel office in California. On the whole, the company picks some very good wines and has a few added perks as well.
Cost Per Month: $299 month for six bottles.
Shipping: Shipping charges vary based on where you are shipping to.
Return Policy: They accept returns for wine that is corked or flawed. You must send the wine back to them.
Wine Access is a wine retailer that discovers and markets some reasonable deals on premium wine. They also have a membership plan where you receive expensive bottles of wine for a little less than what you would pay from other wine retailers. They have a mixed online reputation but are capable of getting their hands on fairly rare wines that you would otherwise be unable to buy.
You get six bottles per year, in shipments of two, in March, June, September, and December. You get access to the story behind each wine, and the company has a fair share of ad-hoc offers for you to enjoy. The curators are fairly new to the game but even though they could use a few more wrinkled faces in their group, they do know their wine. Great care is taken throughout the whole buying experience, to the point that your wines are shipped in temperature-controlled vehicles. However, before you jump online and sign up for six bottles per year, you should manage your expectations when it companies to delivery times. This wine group is notorious for setting delivery dates and then failing to live up to them. You will get your wine, but the question is...when?
Cost Per Month: $150 per quarter for six bottles.
Shipping: Shipping charges are included in the price.
Return Policy: They do not have a "set in stone" return policy. You are directed to contact their customer service and they will try to resolve your issue.
Interested In Joining? Click Here
As wine curators go, these are the pop music or mainstream cinema when most others are underground jazz and indie films. This company appeals to the widest audience, which doesn't make them bad, but hardcore oenophiles may find the Grand Tour a little unadventurous.
Grand Tour Monthly Subscription
A Grand Tour subscription is by no means cheap, but compared to the other wine clubs in this article, Grand Tour is the most reasonably priced. Each month you get four bottles of wine, you will get tasting notes, and you get the story behind each wine.
Typically, you get two whites and two reds, but they occasionally throw in sparkling wine or rose wine. It sounds like a novice thing to say, but even if this is not the best premium wine club, it may appeal to the broadest audience because the wine variety means there will be at least one wine you love.
What Makes a Good Wine Club?
In essence, the best premium wine club is the one that sends you the best wine at your chosen intervals. As soon as it stops sending good wine, you should cancel it. Being in a wine club means all its members get to pool their money to buy crates of wine in bulk. Yet, as “The Wine Access Club” says on their website, it is not always about price, it is often about access. The buying power that the best fine wine club admins have is the reason they are able to unearth consignments of wine that the general public would never otherwise be able to experience.