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Wine Access Review – Everything You Need to Know About This Wine Subscription Box

Lindsey Morse
ByLindsey MorseAug 20, 2021 | 1 comment
Wine Access Review - Everything You Need to Know About This Wine Subscription Box

Wine Access Review

Everything You Need to Know About This Wine Subscription Box

To say we're wine lovers here at My Subscription Addiction would be an understatement. We love pouring ourselves a glass of vino after a long day, and we're always excited to share our new bottle discoveries with one another. (As a mostly remote team, we don't have the typical "water cooler chats," but if we did, you can bet wine would be a regular topic of discussion.) Recently, we discovered Wine Access, and it's made a bit of a splash.

Wine Access is like scoring your own personal backstage pass to the world of wine. The company works directly with independent wineries and small-batch producers to source rare and highly-rated wines that you won't find in your local grocery store. There are several different subscriptions to choose from, and there are options available at a variety of different price points. But is Wine Access the right wine of the month club for you?

In this Wine Access review, we'll tap into our years of experience reviewing wine subscriptions to help you answer that question. We'll look at the selection of wines, pop some bottles, examine the value, and consider the convenience this wine club delivers to subscribers. Want to learn more about Wine Access and see if it's right for you? Read on!

ACTIVE DEAL: Get $50 off $150+ purchase- no code needed. No coupon needed - just use this link.

by Lindsey Morse, MSA Reviewer, Wine Lover
August 20, 2021| 1 comment

This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out our review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

Wine Access Pros & Cons

Wine Access Pros

  • Wine Access is like your own personal wine concierge. They connect subscribers with rare and hard-to-find bottles that you won't see stocking the shelves at your local grocery store.
  • Great bottles of wine don't have to be expensive, but they can be hard to find. Wine Access sources quality wine from all over the world and sends it to your door.
  • All wines are tasted and approved by an expert judging panel, which includes a Master of Wine, Master Sommelier, and International Wine Judge.
  • If you're looking for a great bottle of wine, you can shop the curated selection at wineaccess.com, but if you'd like to receive regular shipments of wine, Wine Access has several different wine clubs available.
  • Looking for variety? Wine Access has you covered with reds, whites, bubbles, and blends from all over the world.
  • There's something for every price point. Individual bottles start at $11.99 and go all the way up to $695.
  • There are multiple wine clubs to choose from. Wine club pricing starts at $120 + tax per shipment.
  • Club members get 10% off all wines in the online store. (And there are lots to choose from!)
  • Shipping is free for orders over $120 or if you order 6 or more bottles of wine.
  • Memberships can be canceled via email or phone.

Wine Access Cons

  • If you only want to receive white wines, Wine Access clubs might not be the best choice. You can sign up to receive all reds or a mix of white and red, but not whites exclusively.
  • A 6 bottle Discovery Club membership offers the most value, but bottles still average $25. If you're looking for budget wines, this may not be the subscription for you.
  • You can't customize the wines in your shipment; however, if you ever receive a bottle you don't like, Wine Access will credit your account no questions asked.

All About Wine Access

 

How does Wine Access work?

In this Wine Access review, we'll go over all the things you need to know about this wine delivery service, but in case you're new to wine clubs, let's start with a quick overview of how Wine Access works. The first thing to know is that when you join a Wine Access wine club, you're signing up for a recurring subscription. You're agreeing to receive wine shipments on an ongoing basis. You'll enter your credit card information when you join, and you'll continue to be charged until you decide to cancel.

How much does Wine Access cost?

If you'd like to place a one-time order, you can purchase bottles in the Wine Access shop. Prices start around $10 for everyday wines, and there are also prestige bottles available for over $500 each. If you'd like to sign up to receive recurring shipments, there are a few wine clubs to choose from:

  • The Discovery Club features 6 "classic and new wave bottlings" and costs $150 per quarterly shipment.
  • The Connoisseur's Club features 2 "luxury bottles of red wine from storied estates" and costs $150 per quarterly shipment.
  • The Michelin Subscription is also available: "Wine Access, the official wine provider of the MICHELIN® Guide, has teamed up with restaurants featured in the MICHELIN Guide to curate a tour of the world’s best wine lists. This is your exclusive invitation to rare wines and expert guidance, with the same attention to detail and culinary harmony that defines the Michelin experience." This subscription will cost $160-$200 per shipment, ship 5x per year, and bring some of the world's best wine lists directly to your door.
  • The Wine Folly Wine Club subscription is for those looking to kickstart their wine education. Each shipment contains 4 bottles of wine, comes with a video to guide you through the tasting, and costs $120 + tax. Wine Folly ships 6 times per year.

ACTIVE DEAL: Get $50 off $150+ purchase- no code needed. No coupon needed - just use this link.

Where and how does Wine Access ship?

Wine Access is currently only able to ship to states that allow direct wine shipments. Liquor laws vary greatly from state to state, so this information is subject to change. Currently, Wine Access is unable to ship to UT, OK, AR, MS, AL, and MI.

How is a Wine Access delivery packaged?

Wine Access shipments are securely packed in a brown cardboard box. Bottles are held in place by molded styrofoam pieces that help prevent the bottles from bashing into one another during transport. The box is sturdy, and bottles are often packed with a cold pack to keep the internal temperature from reaching dangerous levels.

Does Wine Access have different wine clubs available?

Yes! Wine Access has a number of different wine clubs to choose from. Clubs are available at a number of different price points, and the bottles featured will differ depending on which club you choose. Here's more information about the different clubs available:

  • If you're looking for great bottles at an affordable price point, the Discovery Club is the way to go. This subscription features 6 "classic and new wave bottlings" and costs $150 per quarterly shipment.
  • Looking for something more high-end? The Connoisseur's Club features 2 "luxury bottles of red wine from storied estates" and costs $150 per quarterly shipment.
  • If you want to kickstart your wine education and learn about wine by drinking, the Wine Folly Wine Club subscription is for you. Each bi-monthly shipment contains 4 bottles of wine and costs $120 + tax. You'll sip along with a wine expert via video who will walk you through the tasting experience and teach you about the wines if your shipment.
  • Love dining out at the world's best restaurants and exploring their prestigious wine lists? Check out the Michelin Subscription, which is launching soon: "Wine Access, the official wine provider of the MICHELIN® Guide, has teamed up with restaurants featured in the MICHELIN Guide to curate a tour of the world’s best wine lists. This is your exclusive invitation to rare wines and expert guidance, with the same attention to detail and culinary harmony that defines the Michelin experience." This subscription will cost $160-$200 per shipment, ship 5x per year, and bring some of the world's best wine lists directly to your door.

What wines does Wine Access offer?

Wine Access offers a wide selection of quality wines to choose from. In the online marketplace, you'll find hundreds of different wines for sale. The selection features wines from all over the world, and there are even a few Japanese sakes. Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Grigio, Merlot, Zinfandel, Viognier, and Grenache are available alongside red and white blends. You can also filter the selection to search wines by:

  • region
  • variety
  • food pairing
  • price
  • type

Are the Wine Access wines tasty?

Wine Access prides itself on the ability to connect subscribers with high-quality wines from around the world. One look at their online store and it's clear they know their stuff; you'll find everything from affordably-priced 100 point offerings to prestige bottlings like Opus One.

We've been impressed with the quality of the wines we've received via their subscription. The wines are delicious.

What information is sent to accompany the Wine Access wines?

Each bottle sent out via the Discovery Club is accompanied by an info sheet that describes the flavor profile, outlines where the wine is from, and provides tasting notes. On the back of each sheet, you'll find room to jot down your thoughts on the bottle and rate it for yourself.

Is Wine Access convenient?

Without a doubt, we can say with 100% certainty that Wine Access is convenient. If you like keeping wine on hand and want to regularly receive new bottles, Wine Access is a great way to automate your wine buys and stock your wine rack with great bottles you won't find in the grocery store.

My Review of Wine Access

In preparation for this review, I was sent a Discovery Club shipment with 6 different bottles to try. Before I dive in to talk about the wines, I'll share a little bit about my review experience and my drinking profile.

 

  • Review expertise: I've been writing food and wine reviews for My Subscription Addiction since 2014, and I've reviewed all kinds of different wine subscriptions. I regularly review Winc, and I've tried Wine Awesomeness, Firstleaf, Bright Cellars, and more. There's a lot I look for in a wine club, but I'm always on the lookout for delicious wines at affordable prices. I also enjoy a wine subscription that helps me learn a thing or two.
  • Drinking profile: I take an open-minded approach to wine, and I love trying new bottles from all over the world. My current vino obsessions are French rosé, Sancerre, Portuguese Vinho Verde, and New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. I enjoy sipping wine with friends, but I also enjoy pairing wines with meals.
  • Thoughts on Wine Access wines: I've tried a lot of different wine subscriptions, and this one stands out. Every single bottle I tried was excellent and new to me, and it's clear that Wine Access delivers on its promise of connecting subscribers with great wines that are hard to find locally. My favorite bottles were the 2018 Gait Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2018 Reign Merlot Napa Valley, and the Bernard Lonclas Cuvee Selection Brut Champagne. The Cabernet Sauvignon tasted expensive, and it was fantastic with a steak dinner. The Rutherford grapes gave me the classic "Rutherford dust" the area is well-known for, and it was just a fantastic example of a classic Napa Cab. The bottle of merlot was great, too, with a big jammy fruit flavor that was lip-smackingly good. The Champagne was crip and apple-y, and a very pleasant surprise. As a lover of bubbles, I'm always happy to receive sparkling wine in a wine club shipment, but they pop up far less frequently than I'd like. Truly, all of the bottles were great. I'm not much of a Chardonnay drinker, but even I could appreciate the one in this shipment. While Chardonnay might not be my cup of tea, it was still clear to me that this bottle was a well-made wine that's sure to please a lot of subscribers. As much as I loved the wines I received, there are a couple of negatives about this subscription to call out. First of all, the wines arrived in great shape, and I appreciate that they were packed with a frozen gel cooler to keep them from getting too warm en route. They were packed with styrofoam, though, which I try to avoid. I understand it can be useful, but other subscriptions have traded styrofoam for molded cardboard, which is a bit kinder on the environment. It's also worth calling out that this subscription does not offer any customization. I'm open-minded when it comes to wine, but I don't love Chardonnay. And my shipment contained a bottle of Chardonnay. This isn't a deal-breaker for me, but it's always nice to have the option to swap out bottles when I'd prefer something different.
  • Verdict: I've tried A LOT of wine clubs in my day, and Wine Access impressed me. I love the concept (that Wine Access will hook you up with great bottles you might not necessarily be able to purchase yourself) but the wine itself knocked my socks off.

Are there alternatives to Wine Access?

If you like the idea of a wine club, but you're not sure Wine Access is the right subscription for you, there are a few competitors that might be a better fit.

Wine Access vs. Wine Awesomeness

Wine Awesomeness features great wine from around the world. They specialize in rare and lesser-known wines, and selections are made by an experienced curatorial team, which always includes a Food & Wine Sommelier of the Year. Each box comes with digital access to tips, recipes, pairing ideas, and more. Let's outline some of the key differences between Wine Access and Wine Awesomeness:

  • White wine lover?: Wine Access allows you to choose either all reds or a mix of reds and whites. Wine Awesomeness offers a subscription option with all white wines.
  • Shipment size: Wine Awesomeness shipments feature 3 bottles of wine. The Wine Access Discovery Club features 6 bottles per shipment.
  • Shipment frequency: Wine Access ships quarterly. Wine Awesomeness ships monthly.

Wine Access vs. Winc

Winc is a monthly wine subscription that uses a quiz to help pair you with wine matches. Each month, Winc will use your answers to make personalized wine suggestions. You can either agree with their selections and proceed to purchase, or you can switch out one or more of the bottles.

  • Cost: Wine Access memberships are charged at a set rate per shipment. The cost of your Winc subscription will vary depending on which bottles you pick. Member pricing for Winc wines starts at $12.99 per bottle.
  • Quantity: With Winc, you can order as many bottles as you like each month. Wine Access clubs send out a set number of bottles each shipment.
  • Customization: Winc is a fully customizable subscription that allows you to handpick the bottles you receive each month. If you're picky about wine or want to pick out your own bottles each month, Winc might be a better fit than Wine Access.

Wine Access vs. Firstleaf

Firstleaf matches you with personalized wine selections. When you sign up, you take a quiz that helps pin down your preferences, and then Firstleaf picks out your bottles. (You can swap out any wines that don't interest you.) As you rank the bottles and continue to provide feedback over time, your recommendations will become increasingly more accurate. Let's see how these two subscriptions stack up:

  • Shipment size: Just like the Wine Access Discovery Club, each shipment from Firstleaf contains 6 bottles of wine.
  • Price: Firstleaf costs $39.00 with free shipping for the first box, and $79.00 + shipping for subsequent boxes. The Discovery Club costs $150 per shipment. 

Is Wine Access worth it?

We've covered a lot of info in this Wine Access review, but one big question remains: is Wine Access worth it?

Let's start with the most important thing: the wines from Wine Access are great. The company claims to connect subscribers with hard-to-find bottles that are delicious, and it's easy to see that they are succeeding. The wines featured in the Discovery Club are fantastic, and you won't find them for sale on the shelves of your local grocery store. Looking for prestige bottlings? Want to jumpstart your wine education? Or want to try Michelin-approved wines from some of the world's best restaurants' wine lists? Wine Access has subscriptions for that, too.

The Discovery Club breaks down to $25 per bottle, so while it's affordable it's not the cheapest way to get wine. If you're looking for everyday bottles on a serious budget, this might not be the best subscription for you. It's also worth mentioning that this is a subscription best for open-minded wine drinkers. There isn't a lot of customization on offer, so this wine club is best for those with adventurous palettes. Red wines are also the specialty of Wine Access, so white wine lovers might be better off with a white-centric subscription elsewhere.

But for those who love red wine and are open to allowing Wine Access to take the steering wheel, this is a fantastic subscription that features wines from all over the world at incredible value. The selection, value, convenience, and quality are all top-notch. If you're ready to sign up for a Wine Access wine club, just make sure you understand that you're signing up for a subscription; you'll be charged every month until you decide to cancel.

Ready to subscribe? Make sure to sign up using our coupon below to ensure you get the best deal.

 

You can try Wine Access for yourself here:

 

ACTIVE DEAL: Get $50 off $150+ purchase- no code needed. No coupon needed - just use this link.


Have you tried Wine Access? Head to the comments section and let us know!



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"Wine Access is the premier destination for discovering expertly curated wines at every price point. Expect new discoveries curated by the most credentialed team in the industry, who unlock access to the world's most rare and often unattainable wines and deliver them to your door in perfect conditio... read more.
Lindsey Morse
Lindsey Morse
Lindsey is a professional baker, cold brew coffee addict, and rosé aficionado who loves writing about food and wine. When she’s not sharing her love of subscription boxes with the world, you’ll find her in the podcasting studio, perfecting her cake decorating techniques, or cursing her way through the New York Times daily crossword puzzle.

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1 comment

Jody E

I will have to pass on this one. I am a white wine drinker.

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