Club W Wine Subscription Review & Coupon – March 2015
Club W is a monthly wine subscription that re-imagines the traditional wine club. Utilizing a “palate profile quiz” that you take when you join, Club W recommends bottles to suit your personal taste in wine. Each month, you make the decision whether to go along with their suggestions or choose your own bottles from their regularly changing assortment. If you don’t login to make your monthly bottle selection, your recommended wines will be sent by default. You can skip a month at any time.
The wines are sourced directly from vineyards and winemakers, which helps Club W avoid middlemen and secure better wine for less money. Direct to consumer shipping also means they are able to offer smaller, more unique wines than you’ll find in the grocery store.
My Subscription Addiction pays for this subscription. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes).
The Subscription Box: Club W
The Cost: 3 bottles per month start at $39 + $6 flat rate shipping. (Shipping is free on orders of 6 or more bottles.)
COUPON: Use this link to get 50% off your first 3 bottles!
The Products: 3, 6, or more bottles of small-lot wines sourced directly from vineyards and wine makers
Ships to: All US states EXCEPT: AK, AL, AR, DE, HI, KY, MS, OK, PA, RI, DS, and UT
Club W includes a tasting card for each of the wines in your shipment. Each card includes a description of the wine, tasting notes, and information about the flavor profile.
2012 #TBT Pinot Noir– $13
These 3 bottles were recommended for me by Club W based on my “palate profile.” My tastes are fairly varied: I like everything from deep & earthy reds to light & lively whites. I usually prefer bold wines to those with more subtle flavors, which I indicated in my quiz, but I’m willing to try just about anything.
Of the three wines Club W selected for me this month, my favorite was the Chop Shop Cabernet Sauvignon. Chop Shop was one of Club W’s best selling wines in 2014, so they decided to bring it back again this year. I can see why it was so popular! Club W describes this as a “no brainer” wine- a go-to bottle you reach for without even thinking about it. It’s a medium-bodied, fruity Cabernet that was really delicious and very easy to drink.
The #TBT Pinot Noir was also a solid wine. Last month, I liked but wasn’t blown away by most of the reds Club W sent, but this month they really wowed me. This Pinot Noir smelled like spiced cherries and was very smooth. The info card for this wine talks about how difficult it is to make a good, affordable Pinot Noir, but I think they definitely succeeded with the #TBT.
The Porter & Plot Sauvignon Blanc smelled just like pineapple juice, but unfortunately, the incredible smell wasn’t matched by a great flavor. I usually love Sauvignon Blanc, but this bottle fell a little flat for me. It wasn’t a bad wine by any means, just not something I’d seek out again.
2014 Pufferfish Albarino – $13
These 3 bottles are the wines I selected for myself.
Albarino is rarely grown outside of Spain, so I was excited to try this one from California. It was a bright, fresh wine with a hint of saltiness that Club W recommends for “day drinking.” I have to agree. This would be a perfect wine to drink outside on the beach! I also really love the label artwork. Here’s a close up:
For each wine featured on their site, Club W produces a short tasting video. I really enjoyed this feature and found the videos interesting and informative. In the video for the New Native Chardonnay, I discovered that this wine is aged in stainless steel instead of oak, which produces a different Chardonnay than many might be used to drinking. This wine intrigued me, but I was also skeptical about whether it would be a good pick for my palate (since rich, oaky Chardonnay is one of my least favorite wines). I was happy to discover that this Chardonnay wasn’t thick or buttery in the slightest. I really enjoyed it! It smelled like fresh apples and had a crisp acidity that the info card compared to “biting into a lemon bar.”
I selected the Pacificana Zinfandel because I really enjoyed the Pacificana Cabernet Sauvignon in my shipment last month, and I’m so glad I did. This wine was a knockout! Zinfandel is known for having lots of jammy berry flavors, but this one was a little different. Instead of rich, red fruit flavors, this Zinfandel was packed with flavors of blueberry and herbs. The info card claims that this wine “tastes like drinking a glass of blueberry muffins” and smells like “blueberries galore!” Fittingly, the suggested recipe pairing is Blueberry Cornbread.
I’ve been eager to try one of the Club W recipes, so I decided to give this one a shot. The recipe was very straightforward and easy to follow. I had all of the ingredients on hand, and the recipe came together pretty quickly. It probably took me about 15 minutes to make the batter.
The cornbread ended up looking just like the photo on the recipe card, which is always nice.
I was excited to see how the cornbread would taste, but even more curious to see how it would pair with the wine.
The cornbread was moist, delicious, and had great flavor. It was sweet (but not overly so), and I think you could serve it either as a desert or alongside a meal like chili or stew. I was afraid the sweetness of the cornbread might make the wine taste a little bitter, but that wasn’t the case at all. Instead, it nicely offset the tartness of the berries. The wine and cornbread tasted great together, and the blueberries in the bread really brought out the berry flavors in the wine. This was my first time pairing wine with baked goods, and I thought it was a great success!
Verdict: Club W really knocked it out of the park this month. I liked or loved 5 of the 6 bottles I received. I also really enjoyed making the Blueberry Cornbread, and I’m impressed by how tasty it was and how well it paired with the Zinfandel. I’m now excited to try more Club W recipes! When it comes to value, I think the price point of the Club W wines is very reasonable, and I like that the tasting notes they supply (via printed card and online video) help make this subscription accessible to both casual wine drinkers and more seasoned connoisseurs. I definitely recommend Club W for wine lovers interested in trying something new!
Have you tried Club W? What did you think of your wine shipment?