On the face of it, joining a wine of the month club is a no brainer for anyone who likes wine. With so many clubs to choose from, there is something for everyone, regardless of how much money they want to spend or what type of wine they are looking for. It means one less errand to worry about each month. Finally, it takes out the guesswork of what wine to try and instead has an expert picking out the selections. What most people do not realize is that is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to member services.
Wine clubs have been around for a few decades, but up until recently, they have been severely limited in scope and size. The one-two punch that changed all that was the creation of the internet and the relaxation of the laws and regulations that governed direct delivery of wine and other alcoholic products to consumers. Now it is possible for people to sign up for a wine club online in as little as fifteen minutes, and almost all of the states allow for them to have wine shipped to their home or business, provided there is someone of legal age to sign for it.
These changes not only helped the consumers. They are also a boon for all of the small batch wineries across the country. Previously, these mom and pop wineries did not have the financial means to compete against the larger corporate wineries so they tended to stay small in their focus. Most only offered sales at their facility, some were fortunate enough to be featured in local stores and restaurants and a very few managed to piece together mail order sales, a challenging prospect when there was little in the budget for direct advertising and questions over where they could ship.
These wines and wineries of California are now some of the leading featured wineries many of the wine of the month clubs focus on. For a lot of them, this is the first chance they have to get their products in the hands - and the glasses - of wine lovers across the country. They do not have to sacrifice quality in order to produce enough for a typical national distribution. Instead, they can continue to create their ultra-premium wines in small batches, typically a few hundred cases at most, and know that they will be going to an interested clientele. By using the wine of the month club as an introduction, they are also allowing these new customers the opportunity to buy other wines from their library.
Wine lovers get to taste exciting new wines, and winemakers get to meet a whole new audience, proving that wine of the month clubs are a win/win situation for everyone.
Jack Terry is a freelance writer who has been covering the food and beverage industry for over 20 years. http://www.wineclubworld.com