Wine clubs, once a popular staple of the 80’s and 90’s middle class, are back with a vengeance and a wider demographic.
Back in the day, wine clubs were a bit stuffy, reserved for subscribers who were interested in (or wanted to appear interested in) wine, but who weren’t confident enough to make their own selections at the wine store. Today’s primary wine club subscriber may be largely the same, but with the increased popularity of subscription boxes and meal-prep boxes, there’s an added level of youth, fashion-ability and normalcy involved in wine clubs that just wasn’t there before.
Add in the popular millennial mission to discover new brands/trends and support smaller makers, and you have a recipe for wine club madness.
And, with more and more small wineries and independent brewers and distillers opening shop each year, subscription-style beverage boxes are a trend we can definitely get behind.
Really, we’re on board with anything that encourages winemakers, brewers and distillers to be fearless, to play in their craft, to try something new. And being able to circulate smaller batches of their product to eager wine club subscribers instead of worrying about how they might perform with large distributors and big-box stores, definitely encourages play.
Consumers want recommendations, they want convenience, they want to support smaller and more local businesses, they want to try new things, they want to know what wine to pair with the meals in their food subscription boxes and they aren’t afraid or ashamed to get all of this delivered to their door every month. And, by cutting out the grocery store middle man, both the winemaker and wine drinker stand to save a little money. It’s no wonder that wine clubs are seeing a second wind.
Just as the flexibility of our Skolnik stainless steel wine barrels empowers winemakers to craft and control batches of wine without worrying about over oxidation, water-waste or the cost of oak barrels, we hope that the resurgence of wine clubs helps them expand their audience with more freedom.