Bright Cellars is a monthly wine subscription that matches you to wine based on seven question quiz that helps to identify your wine palate.
My Subscription Addiction paid for this box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
Bright Cellars was founded by two MIT grads with a passion for wine and technology. Using your “taste palate quiz” you are given a 4-bottle recommendation to review. You can either agree with their selections and proceed to purchase, or you can switch out one or more of the bottles. Since this is my first month, I went with the recommended bottles as I was unfamiliar with the brands offered.
I love that there are options to be adventurous and that you can pick all red, all white, or a mix. I’m a white drinker – my husband a red – so I love that this one subscription can meet both of our individual needs and be flexible from month to month.
You’re asked to rate each bottle using a quick survey tool to help the algorithm become smarter and more in tune with your taste profile going forward. After the first month, the system uses your ratings to improve your future matches.
About Bright Cellars
The Subscription Box: Bright Cellars
The Cost: $60 + $8 shipping
ACTIVE DEAL: Get $50 off your first month! No coupon needed - just use this link.
The Products: 4 bottles of wine selected based on your taste profile
Ships to: U.S. where it is legal to receive wine by mail. If you’re uncertain whether you can receive wine shipments, contact the Bright Cellars Wine Concierge at [email protected].
Good To Know: You can adjust your shipment frequency in your settings. An adult 21+ must be present at the time of delivery to sign for the shipment. There is an option to add a cheese pairing to your box for $48, this includes 4 cheeses ranging in size from 5-8 oz. each.
Bright Cellars December Experience 2018 Review
What does Bright Cellars have in store for me this month? Let’s find out! As a reminder, my preferences are set for the red & white mixed-choice, and this month I received 3 reds and 1 white.
Thrive+ Alcohol Health Sample (4 capsules) – Retail Value $4.00 (Buy 30 capsules for $29.99)
This month a sample of the Thrive+ alcohol health dietary supplement was included. You’re supposed to take 2-4 capsules after your last alcoholic beverage or before going to bed to make your morning a little easier! Where were these beauties in college?
An educational insert is also always included. This month, the theme is “Wine Etiquette” and provides helpful etiquette tips including how full to fill your glass, how to uncork your bottle, and where you should place your wine glasses while setting your table for a formal meal.
Quinte Royale King of Spades Sauvignon Blanc 2016 (Vin de France) – Retail Value $21.00
Tasting Notes: Green Apple, Grapefruit, Lemon, Lime, Fresh Herbs
“A crisp, refreshing white from the south of France, this Sauvignon Blanc is light in body and high in zesty acidity. Flavors of lime and grapefruit meld with ripe green apple and juicy pear, with notes of fresh green herbs in the aroma. Try pairing with Herbes de Provence fresh goat cheese or roasted lemon and thyme chicken.”
I tend to love citrus noted whites, and this was no exception. It was crisp and light, and I served it cold with a poultry meal. I always love receiving wines from Quinte Royale, because their labels are so cute and perfect to accessorize a game night with friends!
UP IN SMOKE RED BLEND 2017 (California, USA) – Retail Value $23.00
Tasting Notes: Raspberry, Blackberry, Black Cherry, Vanilla, Baking Spices
“Full-bodied and bold, this Red Blend is fruit-forward with flavors of jammy raspberry, blackberry, cherry, and plum. Aging the perfect portion of this wine in Bourbon barrels for three months results in a finished product with smoky, toasty, spicy qualities that are in balance with the fruitiness of the wine itself. Pairs best with bold foods- roasting, grilling, and smoking are all great preparation options!”
This full-bodied red was not for me. It had a very smoky taste, from being aged for several months in a Bourbon barrel and that’s frankly not my cup of tea. I think it could hold up well against the reddest of meat, and I personally might even enjoy it with a lamb stew. My husband did enjoy this bottle, and I will say that it had a smooth finish and seemed to be very balanced.
OBSCURA PINOT NOIR 2016 (California, USA) – Retail Value $23.00
Tasting Notes: Raspberry, Black Cherry, Strawberry, Baking Spice, Earth
“Our Obscura Pinot Noir is a bold, jammy example of a California Pinot, with ripe fruit flavors of raspberry, black cherry, and strawberry. Baking spices like anise, clove, and vanilla meld with earthy notes in the finish. Balanced acidity lends this wine to pair beautifully with a range of cuisines, from a spicy stir-fry to a hearty stew.”
I love the Obscura brand and have sampled it several times as a part of my subscription. I think this is a pretty classic Pinot Noir, and as always I’m pleased with the quality that this brand delivers. It smelled wonderful and had great legs.
MOJAVE RAIN PINOT NOIR 2016 (California, USA) - Retail Value $23.00
Tasting Notes: Strawberry, Cherry, Cranberry, Earth, Baking Spice
“This California Pinot Noir maintains a balanced acidity with a fuller body and ripe red fruit flavors of strawberry, cranberry, and cherry. A touch of earthiness in the finish makes this wine perfect for pairing with a roasted veggie and grain bowl, or earthy cheeses like a truffle gouda.”
This earthy Pinot was a favorite of my husbands, but I preferred the Obscura a bit better. It is slightly acidic and full bodied, with a dark cherry front note, adding a bit of sweetness to this dark wine.
Verdict: The subscription cost is $60 + $8 shipping, making each bottle $17. I was able to find all of these wines online and their retail value is $90 – so it’s like I received a 25% discount off of their listed retail price (not including their respective shipping, which would make the discount even more.
This box was a bit more tailored to my husband this month (last month we received 3 whites vs this month where we received 3 reds) and he enjoyed all of the wines. I liked 3 of the 4, with my favorite being the sauvignon blanc.
The Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? Because of the variation, it’s unlikely that you would get the same items that I’m showing here. At this time, 3 of the wines reviewed are available to purchase by the case (the Up in Smoke is sold out).
Coupon - Save 50% off your first box! No code required, just use this link!
Value Breakdown: This box cost me $60 + $8 shipping, which means that each of the 4 wines in the box has an average cost of $17.
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription box list or wishlist!
Have you tried Bright Cellars?