The Rare Beer Club Subscription Box Review – May 2015
The Rare Beer Club sends craft beers from around the world. They look for “passionate, creative, artisanal brewers” who are creating high-quality beer and often feature brews that are made with unusual ingredients or that utilize innovative production techniques. Each month, two different beers are featured.
The Rare Beer Club is one of the many subscriptions available through MonthlyClubs.com. They also offer monthly clubs for wine, cheese, chocolate, cigars, and flowers. If more than one club appeals, subscribers are welcome to design their own club.
The Subscription: The Rare Beer Club
The Products: 750ml bottles of rare craft beers from around the world.
The Cost: $34.95 + $14 shipping for two bottles per month. $53.95 + $16 shipping for four bottles per month. $70.95 + $19 shipping for six bottles per month.
COUPON: Use code FDAY10 to save $10 on every 3-month or greater order, FDAY15 to save $15 on every 6-month or greater order, and FDAY25 to save $25 on every 12-month or greater order.
Ships to: All US states EXCEPT: AK, HI, and UT.
Since this is my first box, the Rare Beer Club included a welcome flyer. It provides information about shipping times, signature requirements, and how to reorder beers you love.
Each featured beer comes with its own information sheet that provides tasting notes and in depth information about the beer and brewery that produced it. The Rare Beer Club also recommends glassware and serving temperatures for each beer.
This beer is the world’s only Trappist bock ale. It hails from La Trappe brewery, located in Berkel-Enschot, Netherlands. The Trappist brewery was founded in 1884, and, to this day, the beers from La Trappe are brewed “under the supervision and responsibility of the monks.” This beer has a lovely deep red color, with an aroma that’s spicy and malty. Flavor wise, I get a lot of caramel notes, and there’s a slight bitterness that I think blends well with the light sweetness. According to The Rare Beer Club, this is what you would get “if a bock, weizenbock, and Belgian dubbel walked into a bar.” I’m not familiar enough with each of those individual styles to totally get that joke, but it still made me smile.
War and Peace is a Russian Imperial stout from Minneapolis’ Fulton Brewery. It’s brewed with roast barley, chocolate malt, and dark roast coffee from the city’s Peace Coffee. The name is a nod to Tolstoy’s great novel, and, “like Tolstoy’s masterpiece, it may take some time to finish and require some thought along the way,” says Fulton, which made me chuckle. In the glass, this beer is extremely dark. The coffee flavor is very pronounced, but I think it’s a great addition. This is definitely a sipping beer, though. The Rare Beer Club mentions that it might be great with vanilla bean ice cream, which made my eyes light up. Beer float? Yes, please.
Verdict: I greatly enjoyed the rare beers sent by The Rare Beer Club. I discovered two really interesting brews, and, thanks to the information provided, I learned a lot about where they’re from and why they were selected. Value wise, I think this box is tricky. It was difficult to find these beers for sale online, but I found a couple of mentions of price around the web that left me with the impression that the total cost of these beers is likely about the same or lower than the monthly cost of the box (pre-shipping). On the other hand, since they’re small production beers, I’m not sure I’d be able to purchase them elsewhere. I also really value the amount of information The Rare Beer Club included about the beers, and it’s clear that they select their beers with a lot of care. So, while subscribing to this box might mean paying over retail for the beers you receive, I think it’s a great way to try interesting, rare beers that have been selected by industry experts. I certainly enjoyed it, and I would recommend it for die hard craft beer fans as well as casual beer drinkers looking to try new brews from around the world.
Do you love discovering new craft beers? Are you going to try The Rare Beer Club?