A premium-level California wine club featuring some of the finest wines produced in California.
They reward volume purchasing! If you can afford it, by upgrading to the 4-bottle per shipment program you can save up to $13 per bottle.
It seems like the price on this wine club is a little higher than it needs to be, so dropping it a bit and extending more of a discount to their premium subscribers would make us happy.
There is much to love about The California Wine Club, not the least of which is their devotion to California's Mom & Pop wineries, where some of the best value and most interesting wines in America come from. This helps the wine club find great quality wines to ship to their equally-devoted monthly members.
The Signature Series Wine Club is one of The California Wine Club's luxury clubs (the other is their Aged Cabernet Series), with two, three, or four exceptional bottles shipped to you or two bottles to your favorite oenophile each month, bi-monthly, or quarterly.
At WineClubReviews.net we take an objective approach to our star ratings system. Our written reviews are very much subjective, based on our 5+ years of wine club review experience and our own ideas about what good wine and good value mean. The star ratings are based on 11 attributes that we feel define what a wine club should be. Here is how Signature Series Wine Club stacks up on these traits.
Note: This rating is our objective analysis of The California Wine Club's satisfaction guarantee—not our assessment of whether or not you’re guaranteed to be satisfied with their wines.
The California Wine Club offers a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee: They'll refund you for any wines you don't love. That said, we'd be genuinely surprised and concerned if you recive a poor selection from The California Wine Club.
What if I don't like the wine?
Although wine tastes vary from person to person, our wines are guaranteed. If you get a bad bottle, we will immediately reship a replacement or refund your money!
This is a red wine only wine club which focuses on high-end California wine from boutique wineries around the state. By its very nature, the quality of all the wines is excellent, no exceptions.
This is an area where The Signature Series isn't exceptional. If you're lucky, you might find these wines in wine stores for better prices, but never at the winery, and since they're only offering tiny-production wines, that could be like finding a needle in a haystack. What you get for nearly retail is a guarantee (which you won't get at a store or the winery) and a wine that's been vetted by a third-party. At this price, those two benefits are worth real money.
In six years of working with The California Wine Club we have never had a single customer complaint. That's amazing to us. Our usual Internet sleuthing failed to turn up any customer complaints. Kudos to them!
We look at three areas when evaluating the discount opportunities offered by a wine club. Is there an introductory offer to sweeten the deal? Are there discounts available for buying more of wines you loved in your shipments? Are there special discounts only available to members?
The California Wine Club has been experimenting with introductory offers, lucky you! At the time of this writing, you could choose from: a bottle of bubbly ($30 value), or 20% off your first month (up to $52 value for this wine club, expires on Sep 30, 2015). If you somehow miss one of these great offers, you can also get $25 off just for using our website—enter promo code WCR25 at checkout to save $25 on your first order. Sometimes they even send a $25 coupon for their wine store in your first shipment.
The California Wine Club typically offers generous discounts on reorders, while supplies last—on The Signature Series wines though, the prices are pretty much the same as anyone could get.
Inside each shipment there is a wine scorecard to fax or mail back (the member can also go to the My Account section of the website and rate the wines online). The scorecard conveniently reminds the member of their 10% reorder discount— one of the biggest benefits of joining a wine club is the reorder discount! They'll also find a $25 credit toward a future purchase, and information about The California Wine Club that makes you look like a wine gift pro.
Lastly, members-only special deals come up all the time. Whether it's presale opportunities or extra discounts in their wine shop, you'll be glad you participate.
The California Wine Club is a more old-fashioned company. If you need to hold your service for a vacation or want to cancel your membership you'll need to call and speak to someone during regular business hours. You can handle reorders yourself online, as well as see a record of the wines you've received and when you received them.
The California Wine Club sends out the prettiest assortment of wine info (called Uncorked) with each shipment of The Signature Series. It contains tasting notes about each wine, the wineries they come from, the winemakers, and the wine region. They also go all-in on food pairing recipes and members-only deals like $1 shipping on case reorders.
With a club as specialized as The Signature Series, personalization is largely moot. They do offer ongoing subscribers an option two, three, or four bottles per shipment and lets them choose to receive these gems monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly. If you're giving it as a gift, you'll only get to send two bottles per shipment, but you can choose any number of months 1-12.
The Signature Series is not entirely unique, but like the wines it offers, it is rare. True premium wine clubs are usually limited in nature and there are only a small handful on the market. This one delivers exceptional value up here in the ether of pricing because of all of the other goodies that make The California Wine Club a great choice.
Until recently, curation at The California Wine Club was always handled by its owners, Bruce and Pam Boring. While management of the company has shifted, Bruce and Pam still have a hand in selecting the wines each month. They're not qualified "wine experts" (neither are we for that matter), but they have more than 25 years experience tasting wines that impress their customers, which stands for a lot. We've seen wine clubs come and go and happy customers is the only way you stay in business this long.
Unless someone only likes white wine, anyone who drinks wine would appreciate this gift. You'll really impress a red wine afficionado.
Is your giftee a Cab fanatic? Try The California Wine Club's Aged Cabernet Series instead!