Written by: Tim Edison

Updated on: January 26, 2022

Club W Wine Club Review

Club W Wine Club Review

Club W Wine Club is an easy favorite of wine clubs, which is why we're starting with it.  The club sends its members one box of three bottles of wine a month selected for that member based on a six question survey to get a sense of what members like in a wine.  There is also a chance to select wines individually, or order from their store.

These are mail order subscriptions that allow members to receive a box of wine, delivered right to their home or office.  We at Wine Turtle will be trying these out and reviewing them to help you choose which is the best for you.  Whether you have a desire to experiment or like a particular varietal, chances are there is a wine club out there for you and we'll help you find it.

There are a variety of factors that make or break a wine club, and besides the basics (see the handy chart below) we'll go through these.  What do we look at when deciding whether our thumbs will point up or down?  Customer service, choice, pricing, transparency, educational quality, snob factor... so much.  These reviews will all be structured the same way so you can hone in on what YOU want in a wine club. 

Our Video Review and Unboxing of Club W Wine Club

Detailed Review of Club W Wine Club

Club W Wine Club


Price

Quality

Support

Educational Value

We liked

  • The price points for wines and $6 shipping is awesome.
  • Simple recipes with alternatives.
  • The customer service reps manning their online chat widget are friendly, knowledgeable, and easy to work with.
  • Easy to navigate website that allows for full control over your account and finances.
  • No hidden fees!
  • Not pretentious at all!

We didn't like

  • Club W is bad about answering emails.
  • We wish they included some of the more common wine terms - because there are certain ones people look for.

Summary: When it comes to Club W, the good far outweighs the bad and the bad are things that simply could be better - no deal breakers.  Sure, they are really bad about answering email, but they have a handy on site chat widget that is probably better than any service you could get over email anyway - you can immediately explain something you didn't articulate right, or if you think of another question during your chat you can ask it right then.  Also, while we love that they are inviting to all wine customers no matter their experience, there are some terms we wouldn't mind seeing in their descriptions because they are the ones everyone knows.  It's okay to say "buttery", Club W, everyone knows that feel and taste.

About Club W Wine Club

Club W is one of the most visible wine clubs on Facebook.  It's simple system, focus on the member, and love of small businesses make it outrageously popular.  Club W regularly ranks as a favorite wine club of reviewers, and for good reason.

Upon signing up potential club members answer a series of six simple questions to get a sense of their preferences when it comes to wine.  Rather than ask questions using wine terms, which can be intimidating to those who just know what they like, Club W uses terms everyone can answer: How do you feel about salt?  Which of the following desserts would be your favorite?  No one has to know whether they like candied fruit or barnyard on the nose.  By answering simple questions about food and taste preferences, in general, Club W gets a sense of what might excite the member in a wine.

After answering questions about taste, members are shown the three wines Club W thinks it would like based on their available pool that month. Below these three wines there are other available wines, so if the member knows they are cooking something that would pair well with a Chardonnay but there isn't one in their box but one available they can swap out.​  Members can rate the received wines to help Club W make shipment decisions in the future - these wine ratings will reflect the member's tastes as time goes on.

Boxes ship monthly and contain wines made specifically for Club W through its partnerships with small wineries.  Club W is the winemaker - or at least a partner in it.  Because of this, wines are not available in shops or online - just through the club.  If a particular wine is good, you can order it through the site at a discount while it is available.​

What Does Membership Get Me?

  • Monthly shipment of three wines chosen based on the member's profile or selected by the member from pool of available.
  • Card for each wine with information about the wine written in an easy to understand, unpretentious way. One side is about the wine while the other includes a recipe that will pair perfectly with the wine. The best part? Alternatives are given. In our first box we received wine that paired with nachos but nachos for dinner would get out of control in this house, so instead we used the ingredients as inspiration for tortilla soup using the same ingredients. Those with food allergies will be happy to know that each card has alternative ideas so if you get something that you can't eat (we had a seafood recipe but also have a nasty seafood allergy in the house so we'll make one of the other suggestions.
  • Access to Club W's informative, fun videos about each wine they offer - if you want to know more than is on the card.
  • Choice of increasing number of bottles and makeup of red vs white.
  • Club W has the option to skip a month. Whether you're traveling or have signed up for a few too many wine clubs and don't have any room for it, just click the green button on your "my account" page and take the month off!

Take Note: We recommend that you go with a mixed shipment.  While many are tempted to go all red, you'd be amazed the whites that you will like based on the preference survey.  At least get the first few shipments with whites included - you might meet your new favorite wine!

Show Me The Money!

Some wine clubs are less than up front when it comes to how much you'll pay, hidden fees, and extra add ons.  Club W is upfront about pricing although you'll want to check your account each month due to different price points.  Here's what you need to know:

  • Many wines are $13/bottle so the minimum price for a shipment is $43. Club W uses a flat, more than fair, shipping rate of $6/box no matter where it is shipped. The highest wines are $19/bottle making the maximum cost of a shipment $63.
  • No monthly membership fee.
  • No Cancellation fee. Just cancel before your next month's order is processed!
  • Your "My Account" page includes all info on preferences, billing date (cancel before this date to be charged)
  • When you log on to the site and are signed in you immediately see the wines selected for your next shipment and the price. Our first month was $13/bottle for all three and this month is, too.
  • Order 6 or more bottles and Club W picks up your $6 shipping fee.

What We Love:  There are many clubs out there that make it impossible (or nearly so) to figure out how much you'll be charged.  Staying logged in on a personal computer means you immediately know how much your next shipment will close and one click to get to your account allows you to see your processing date.

Things We Like

The Price Is Right - Many of us will have wine at a party, a restaurant, a bar and then go out and buy it.  We've tried it so if we know we like it we're cool spending $20 or more.  But a wine you've never tried?  Or a varietal you've never heard of?  No one wants to drop $30 on the unknown.  Club W has a huge selection of $13 wines - a great price point for the unknown.  And no wines are more than $19, also a great price.  Add to that a flat $6 shipping rate and there are no other clubs at quite the value.  Also, because you get to select your wines you could guarantee that you only ever get $13 wines if that's your budget!

 The Inserts - A club recently sent me a certificate printed on cardstock annoucing that I was a member of their club.  Uh, thanks?  I'd rather have items in the box that I can use, not ones that will turn into scrap paper or go in the recycling bin.  Club W gives me one A5 piece of beautifully designed high quality cardstick (glossy) with the description on one side and a recipe on the other for each wine in my box.  This is simple, informative, and easy to share with others (since I have access to this via the website).

 Some Choice Without Being Overwhelmed - I can forget about my monthly box and know that I'm getting a fairly priced shipment of 3 wines that match my profile and any ratings I've put up.  I can pick how many bottles of which color I want.  I can add a bottle or two.  But I don't have to sit down with a confusing matrix and figure out what I want, how to get it, and how much it will cost.

Things We Don't Like

Is This Thing On? - If you have an option to contact you by email, you should check and answer your emails.  Honestly, we LOVE the onsite chat widget and so our advice is to just use that and skip contacting them by email.

Tricky Descriptions - We love an unpretentious approach to wine.  It's kind of our thing, after all.  But sometimes in an effort to avoid being pretentious, things can actually get more confusing.  Because these wines are not readily available it can be hard to look up good descriptors and Club W is avoiding certain tasting terms that would help us better understand them.  Of course our first shipment was so incredible we don't really care how anyone describes it, because we describe it as great.

The Verdict

No matter your experience in wine, whether you're winning tasting contests or have only had Boone's Farm, this is a phenomenal club.  It's especially good for someone who hasn't done a club before - the price and likelihood that you're going to love the wine give it an edge.  A personalized touch is also missing from many clubs and Club W takes time to figure out the basics of what each member likes and use that to help curate a great shipment each month.  You really can't get much better than Club W. 

About the Author Tim Edison

Although not having any formal training in wine, Tim has developed an irrefutable love of wine and interest in anything related to it ever since his late teens.

Coming from a family of wine lovers, it was from a young age that he got exposed to wine and the culture that goes with it.

Tim has travelled to dozens of wine regions across the world including those in France, Italy, California, Australia, and South Africa.

It is with great joy that he hopes to share those experiences here on wineturtle.com and take you along on the journey for a second time!

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