The Plonk white wine club has always been among our favorites because of the proprietor's preference for quirky but delectable wines. Etty Lewensztain sources interesting wines made from grapes and regions you've never heard of (and some you have). Whether you choose four or twelve bottles you'll be glad you picked Plonk.
Lately we've come to think of Plonk as the "Somm club" that isn't run by a sommelier. With a focus on wines under $30 that will delight any curious wine drinker, we think the value is top notch. Also, unlike most wine clubs, if you're thinking of going red-only or white-only, you'll actually get four different selections (three of each if you upgrade to 12 bottles).
When it comes to Plonk we have little to ask for in the improvement department. Because the wines are so great, we'd really like to see a more giftworthy version of the subscription which includes gift wrap and maybe even store credits so they can order more of their favorites.
IMPORTANT NOTE: We reviewed the 4-bottle monthly club and re-used the photos here. The twelve-bottle case club comes from the same selections as the 4-bottle club, but sends three of each. Also, you pay less per bottle when you join the case club!
There are a small handful of wine clubs out there designed for adventurous wine drinkers who want to expand their palates, and are willing to take a leap to try things they'd never otherwise get to try. Plonk is one of these wine clubs.
Few wine clubs offer, much less feature, organic and biodynamic wines.
There are myriad reasons for this, including the fact that most wineries are organic or biodynamic because it's good agricultural sense, even if they're not certified or promoting it.
Some notes from our last shipment:
We tried the Scholium Project wine first. This is among the most interesting wines we've ever tried. The story behind this winery is fascinating, and Etty's willingness to showcase such brave winemaking moves in her wine club tells us as much about her, and her philosophy of wine-drinking, as it does about the mad scientist behind the Scholium Project.
When we first poured the wine, we couldn't help but notice the color—a pale salmon color, usually reserved for luscious rose wines from Provence, due to a small amount of intentional oxidization. At cooler-than-room-temp, the wine exhibits a bright palate, and amazingly a nutty aftertaste. Almost like Sherry, but much lighter than Sherry.
We decided to cool it down further and found, while the wine has unique properties that make it interesting to drink on its own, it was extremely food friendly. One day we had it with spinach and ricotta ravioli and the next chile verde chicken burritos and rice. It went beautifully with both, which might make this the most versatile pairing option you'll find after Champmagne.
Normally we're not big on "freemiums" as incentives to join wine clubs, as the freebie is almost always junk. This is NOT the case with the free Plonk Corkscrew! We own a number of different styles of corkscrew, including other "professional waiter's corkscrews," but the think that really sets this one apart is the "double-jointed" support for opening on the bottle. Now every bottle gets opened without Herculean efforts (unless of course it's a solid rubber cork).
We're pretty impressed with this wine club and we think you will be, too.
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 Plonk White Wine Club stacks up on these traits.
While we don't receive as many shipments of Plonk wine as we do other clubs, we've certainly sampled enough over the last five years to know the consistency is terrific and the wines are clever selection of unusual and high-quality grapes and regions.
Plonk wine clubs focus on excellent wines at affordable prices. There are cheaper wine clubs, and there are wine clubs that offer more expensive wines, but no other club delivers this type of quality at this low of a price.
The Plonk Wine Club is best known for its hands-on, highly personal, and very prompt customer service. Unlike other clubs, where you might get shifted to a call center in a far off country or an automated email queue, the owner of the Plonk Wine Club is always available—and loves to—to chat over the phone and exchange emails with members, like a personal wine concierge or sommelier.
Etty and her palate have been recognized and validated time and time again by wine critics and foodie mags around the country. She consistently picks winners and was recognized as one of Wine & Spirits Magazine's Top 30 Under 30. We trust her curation 100%.
Note: This rating is our objective analysis of Plonk Wine Club's satisfaction guarantee—not our assessment of whether or not you’re guaranteed to be satisfied with their wines.
Plonk 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 plonk from Plonk.
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?
Getting cool discounts isn't really what Plonk is about. The owner, Etty Lewensztain, focuses on getting you great wines and getting them to you at a really fair price. She has the lowest mark-up in the wine club market, giving you great value in every box, but...
Get a free professional corkscrew with the first shipment of any new subscription (it's double-hinged and teflon coated, which makes it our favorite corkscrew).
All members get a 10% discount on wines you love and reorder. Buy a case and also save 25% on your shipping costs.
Lastly, renewing members get a free bonus bottle in their first renewal shipment.
Plonk is a service-oriented company. If you need to hold your subscription for a vacation or want to cancel your membership you'll need to call and speak to someone during regular business hours. Basic online account management exists for tasks like changing your shipping address, updating your credit card, and extending your membership (you'll get a bonus bottle for this).
A personalized wine club used to mean you picked the color of your wine and how often you received your two-bottle selection. For Plonk, it still does. Additionally, you can decide to receive two, four, or 12 bottles in each shipment.
The Plonk Wine Club is unique in its unusual, high-quality wine selections and its devotion to foodies. Beyond those two criteria, Plonk is like most other wine clubs offering regular deliveries of wine. Since Etty is all about attentive service, you'll always feel like her only customer—which is definitely unique among wine clubs.
Plonk's wine education program happens mostly online. This is common among the newer wine clubs as it saves money on printing costs, thereby passing more value onto you, the customer. The online education is terrific as you get handcrafted, succinct tasting notes packed with valuable info and three food-pairing recipes for every wine.
If you know an adventurous wine lover, buy them a subscription to the Plonk wine club and we promise you'll feel like the gifiting champ of the year!
Giving this as a corporate gift? Plonk also offers a unique corporate gifting program called Corporate Corks where you can put whatever you want in the box with your business gifts.
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At WineClubReviews.net we take an objective approach to our star ratings system. Our written reviews are very much subjective, based on our 9+ 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 Firstleaf Wine Club stacks up on these traits.
Plonk White Wine Club