Vinesse Review

Overall Vinesse Rating

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Vinesse Review and Gift Review -

Hi! At Wine Club Reviews we review different companies that sell wine club memberships and wine gifts.

This page is a review of Vinesse.

Vinesse offers 10 different wine clubs, (see photos and details below). These wine clubs are:

American Cellars Wine Club (ACWC)

From: $59.00 per shipment
Mediocre wines at best. Not even a great value really. We find this club to be utterly disappointing. / You can decide exactly how much you wine you want to receive, unprecedented options on order size and frequency. / We're all for cheap wine, but we really would prefer our cheap wine to actually be cheap. These prices are too steep for cheap.

Deals & Coupon Codes

For joining the American Cellars Wine Club today, you'll receive a 6-piece insulated wine tote include with your third wine club shipment as a token of our appreciation—a $37.95 value.

Read Our ReviewGo Directly to the Wine Club

Elevant Society Wine Club

From: $81.00 per shipment
Reliably good quality premium wines. Includes some real gems and we often see their selections on Lot18. / We've been super impressed with the quality and value of nearly every wine we've received from the Elevant Society wine club. We think you will be, too. / We'd like to see a little less of the superlatives... "super-premium" wines don't carry a $35 price tag. Regardless, these are definitely premium wines worth their price.

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California Treasures Wine Club

From: $84.00 per shipment
Value-minded selections for California wine lovers / California wines can get pricey because real estate is so expensive here, but Vinesse finds great bargains to represent California / Considering there'???s a glut of high-end California wine on the market, we think this wine club could deliver better quality wine for these value prices

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Light & Sweet Wine Club

From: $115.00 per shipment
A rare wine club designed for those who love light and sweet wines. Great for summer sipping and you don???t even need food to enjoy these gems. / We strongly support all niche wine clubs. The taste of wine is subjective and we think everyone should drink what they love. / We'd love to see customers rewarded for buying bigger allotments. "Buy more save more" would be great!

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Four Seasons Wine Club

From: $109.00 per shipment
Wines hand-picked and delivered to compliment each season / It's better to ship more wine less often, so we like the way they've compressed a normal 2-bottle monthly club / Great value and a great track record are nothing to sneeze at, but we???d like to see a better understanding of where the wines will come from.

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The World of Wine Club

From: $71.00 per shipment
One of the best International wine clubs. Each shipment features a new wine region... and often unusual ones! / Consistent quality and excellent "discovery" club enhances your wine knowledge and expands your palate. / We'd love it customers were rewarded for ordering the bigger shipments. "Buy more save more" would be great!

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Sparkling Wine Club

From: $99.00 per shipment
Champagne and Sparkling wines from around the world instead of the same old selections at the store / So much fun to have Sparkling Wine & Champagne on hand whenever an occasion pops up... glad to see this solid offering with a 12-bottle option / We'd always like to know which wines have been in recent shipments. Their transparency could be better.

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Pinot Noir Wine Club

From: $69.00 per shipment
This is an entry-level Pinot Noir club for people who love Pinot but can't afford premium Pinot Noir / There are a number of wineries out there making affordable Pinot Noir and now we don't have to hunt to find them / We'd always like to know which wines have been in recent shipments. Their transparency could be better.

Read Our ReviewGo Directly to the Wine Club

Cabernet Sauvignon Wine Club

From: $61.50 per shipment
This is an entry-level Cabernet club for people who love Cabernet Sauvignon but can't afford Napa Cab prices / Cabernet is a great everyday wine when it's affordable, so these prices make us want to drink Cab every day / We'd always like to know which wines have been in recent shipments. Their transparency could be better.

Read Our ReviewGo Directly to the Wine Club

Chardonnay Wine Club

From: $61.50 per shipment
A super Chardonnay club at a great price / By focusing on Chardonnays that come from some of the world's cheaper wine regions, you get to enjoy all that Chardonnay has to offer and save a few bucks while you're at it / We'd always like to know which wines have been in recent shipments. Their transparency could be better.

Read Our ReviewGo Directly to the Wine Club

Last Updated: 5/28/2013

Why we recommend Vinesse Wine Clubs

Note: A good portion of the Vinesse wine club customer base signs up for the wine club, specifically the American Cellars Wine Club, because they are offered bonus airline or hotel miles by joining the wine club. If this is you and you’re checking out the wine club before you sign... good for you for doing due diligence before you sign up for something!

For everyone else reading this review these “miles members” frequently join this club just for bonus miles and haven’t given much thought to what a wine club is or what they should expect from it. We understand that these customers might feel taken advantage of, but we hardly blame that on Vinesse, we feel much of that responsibility belongs the airlines and hotels. They partner with Vinesse in order to create a new profit center for themselves, and they do this by leveraging their existing customer relationships.

If you’ve been reading Rip-Off Report and came to WineClubReviews to learn more about Vinesse wine clubs, here is a less exhuberantly irritated point of view regarding some of the complaints...

  1. Consumers complained about the quality of the wine.
    Quite honestly, we’re baffled by this. At least we were. After months of tasting shipments from the American Cellars Wine Club shipments, we can safely say the quality is probably not what any experienced wine drinker would want. Sadly, this reputation sometimes gets applied to all of the Vinesse wine clubs, but happily, many of their wine clubs are excellent (see below).

    We know wine taste is subjective and don’t expect to like all of the wine we drink. Likewise we don’t expect you to like all of the wine you receive from any wine club out there. This subjectivity is why our wine club ratings focus on quality and value instead of taste.
  2. Consumers complained about ongoing charges/shipments and didn’t know they were coming.
    This one is really hard for us to swallow (seriously). How do you sign up for a wine club and not know you’re going to get charged for future wine shipments that will be delivered to you? Enough said.
  3. Consumers who complained about irregular shipment schedules
    Well, now here’s an interesting topic. While a few Vinesse customers have been vocal about this issue, it’s actually a logistics problem common to most wine clubs.

    Here is an explanation of how you might reasonably get charged for your second shipment within a day or two of receiving your first shipment and before you have a chance to back out of that second shipment (common mostly to people who just want their airline miles and then get out of the program).

    Most wine clubs ship out their regular wine club shipments on a particular day of the month. If you sign up say 14 days or less before ship date, you get the next “regular” shipment and everything turns out well. If you sign up more than say 14 days before that ship date, you’ll get an initial shipment, and then get added into the “regular” shipment schedule.

    Assume the first shipment goes out within 2 days of placing the order. Now, let’s say you live somewhere where state regulatory issues require a holding period of 7-10 days before you can receive the wine. There’s only 2 days left until the next shipment is scheduled to go out, so you’ve probably already been charged... it’s not a scam, it’s just an unfortunate logistical situation. Not surprisingly, this timing problem is a big deal to Vinesse and they are actively working to reduce these types of issues.
    Vinesse is doing all they can to address this problem. The information that goes out in the confirmation email after you sign up for the club contains detailed information about your shipping schedule and when your credit card will be charged.
  4. Consumers who complained about the mysterious annual fee and subsequent handling of refunds
    Before you read the rest of this answer, please note that NONE of the wine clubs you purchase from Vinesse through carry an annual fee.

    Alright, we acknowledge this situation is a little sketchy, but we don’t think it qualifies as a scam, as some past customers have declared. We don’t fully blame Vinesse for the problem, but they definitely could be more aggressive in finding a better way to handle it. This is a combination of regulatory issues, technical issues, and customers not reading the Terms & Conditions. Vinesse can’t do anything about the first and third reasons, but they are falling short in handling the second one.

    Regulatory issues - Vinesse is very rigid about their compliance with California state regulations (for good reason). The California ABC commission prohibits retailers with an alcohol license form giving away free items with the purchase of alcohol. Many years ago, in order to do an end-run around this, they decided to charge an annual fee and then provide a voucher for an equal amount of money that you could spend on wine. Seems like a fair way to treat customers and not be in violation of the free item rule.

    Technical issues - This is where Vinesse dropped the ball and still hasn’t quite picked it up (but they are thinking about it). You can’t use the voucher to pay for your wine club membership online, you’d have to call customer service. You can use your voucher to pay for additional wine you buy at their online store or via customer service. A little weak in this day and age, we agree... but you CAN redeem the voucher, thereby nullifying your annual fee and allowing you to receive free goods from Vinesse.

    Customer issues - We HIGHLY encourage anyone signing up for any type of continuity program (whether it’s a health club membership, a wine club subscription, or a magazine subscription) to read the fine print. It’s there for your protection and it’s a good idea. If these customers had read the Terms & Conditions when they enrolled, they would have seen the annual fee and could have elected not to subscribe. Additionally, a printed letter was mailed to each subscriber (with the voucher in it) explaining the need for the annual fee and the voucher... so the moral of this story is please, read your mail when it’s from someone who you have a financial relationship with!

And by now (if you’re still reading) you’re probably thinking, “Well you don’t work for Vinesse, but they probably pay you to say correct these complaints.” And you’d be right, BUT:

  1. We get paid by a lot of wine clubs and don’t have to say nice things about them (they don’t pay us to say nice things, they pay us to deliver new customers).
  2. We don’t have to include wine clubs on our site just because they’re willing to pay us. We have existing financial relationships with a couple of wine clubs that we just don’t think it’s worth talking about. COULD we get paid if we list them on the site? Maybe...
  3. It’s not what motivates us here at WineClubReviews... our goal is to help connect wine drinkers with the right wine club for themselves or to give as a gift... not just our favorite wine clubs or the ones that pay us the most because that’s slimy and/or self-serving (we do tend to favor wine clubs where a high percentage of visitors we refer make a purchase because that seems to mean the wine club was the right wine club for those visitors).
Jessyca Frederick

Vinesse Ships Wine to:
Alaska, Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Dist of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Wyoming

Wine Club Shipments We've Received

A sample shipment from our American Cellars Wine Club (ACWC) ReviewA sample shipment from our The World of Wine Club ReviewA sample shipment from our The World of Wine Club ReviewA sample shipment from our The World of Wine Club Review