Wine Club Ideas for Father's Day
I was interested in subscribing to a wine club for Father's Day. There seem to be so many and it's hard to tell which ones are actually good / really make a nice gift. I also want to give my dad something different (e.g. not just random wine from wine.com). Any ideas? I've read previous boards but the information was from awhile back. Thanks!
I have belonged to several wines clubs in the past, two were through a local wine seller. I live in the Pacific Northwest so my first ever wine club was just wines from the Northwest and I got 2-3 bottles each month, I was in that one for about a year but had a glut of heavy reds in my cellar. So I switched to the collectors club where I received a case every month that had a selection from around the world. This was a fun way to try wines from all over but then I ended up with just too much wine.
I have since quit both of those and I belong to two winery specific clubs that are personal favorites and they don't distribute so I can't get their wine anywhere else.
My favorite tradition and this may work for you Dad, on my birthday I go to a large local wine merchant and select a mixed case of wine anything I want no price limit. Then each month I drink one of these bottles, they are all special and it is something to look forward to every month.
That is a great gift you have a lucky dad.
Not knowing where you live and whether some wineries will be able to ship to you I love some of the wineries out of central coast. They are all low production for the most part and turn out unique wines which your Dad might enjoy sharing and discussing with friends. My two immediate choices would be Saucelito Canyon in Arroyo Grande, CA. renowned for their Zinfandels and one or two other occasional varieties or Claiborne and Churchill known for their Alsatian style whites with an occasional Pinot Noir thrown in. Also in Arroyo Grande. Part of the fun of wine collecting and drinking for me is to get things other people don't have or get and sharing them with others.
I hate to be contrarian, but I generally dislike these ideas . . . even though I used to run one.
The problem with most wine clubs are that you get a lot of wine that you may (or may not!) like. If you subscribe to a winery's wine club, there are definitely some benefits to be had, but you often get wiens you don't want or like. If you subscribe to a retailer's club, you often get inexpensive wines that are available in a sufficiently large quantity to fulfill the members' needs. These can be from wineries/producers that you have never heard of, and will never be able to find again -- as it may be bottled under a private label just for the wine club.
Personally, I would suggest talking with your local wine merchant: telling him/her the types of wine(s) your father likes; giving him/her a budget; and have him/her put together a case of unusual wines that your father would (probably) never try on his own, but are chosen with his preferences in mind . . .
Just my two cents, and probably worth far less . . .
You seem to be missing my point.
While I'm glad to you think the wine club at Tobin James is great, I would say that it's great FOR YOU -- perhaps you like EVERYTHING Tobin James makes. In that case, the wine club from Tobin James is great FOR YOU. But I know very few winery-based wine clubs where that would be true for most people.
<Personally, I would suggest talking with your local wine merchant: telling him/her the types of wine(s) your father likes; giving him/her a budget; and have him/her put together a case of unusual wines that your father would (probably) never try on his own, but are chosen with his preferences in mind . . .
Just my two cents, and probably worth far less . .>
I'd say they're worth far more, Jason!
Imho, I agree with Jason on the quality of many of the all-inclusive wine clubs.
My only experience with clubs is to belong to ones sponsored by wineries whose wines I like across the board. Fwiw, Jason, in my experience, when a wine comes up in a winery-sponsored club that you dont want, you can ask them to sub another wine in your selection. However, I have rarely had that occur. If I belong to the club, I'm likely to be pretty happy with the selections I get, as well as the opportunity to order other wines at a members-only rate.
Wine Unleashed (www.wineunleashed.com) is really great, you get really personalized service from a sommelier and a selection of wines from around the world. The wines are excellent quality and value, and you get things that you can't get in a store. Also comes with extensive tasting notes and food pairings!
You might consider something that includes several wineries, instead of just one.
For example, WineQ (www.wineq.com) is a great service that allows you to create a "Queue" of wine, and you can read other peoples recommendations.
Bottlenotes (www.bottlenotes.com) does something similar and you can tell it what price range you want to spend, and it will sort of Netflix your upcoming choices.
Also, there are many regional wine clubs that take the best of that region, like the Santa Cruz Mtn wine club, or California Wine Club.
Sunset Magazine has http://www.signaturewines.com/sunset/ which is a selection of thier favorites.
Great idea! I did this for my brother for xmas, it's been a lot of fun.