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Wine Access Review 2024: Just For Connoisseurs?

Author Jessica White
Jessica White
Updated on Apr 10th, 2024
Fact checked by Emma Vince

Overview

Wine Access offers a unique approach to exploring the world of wines. Its extensive selection caters to both novice enthusiasts and seasoned connoisseurs. Whether you're looking to expand your palate or find that perfect bottle for a special occasion, Wine Access helps you explore wines from renowned and boutique vineyards.

I've thoroughly researched Wine Access to bring you an in-depth understanding. My analysis delves into its wine selection process, subscription model, and user experience. You'll find insights into the expertise behind its selections, and the benefits it offers, such as detailed tasting notes and food pairing suggestions.

If you want to join a wine club, my Wine Access review will help you decide. You'll discover whether it aligns with your wine preferences and needs. If you prefer to choose the bottles in your shipment, try Firstleaf instead. Keep reading to get all the information and to determine if Wine Access is the right fit for you.

Pros

Cons

Expert selected global wines

Can be expensive

Educational materials

No monthly subscriptions

Range of wine clubs

Limited customer contact options

What’s on the Wine Access Wine List

Wine Access stands out with its expertly curated selection. It is led by a team that includes a Master of Wine and a Master Sommelier. This ensures that you're accessing some of the finest wines available.

Wine Access homepage

It will appeal to you if your interest lies in luxury wines or learning about the stories behind each bottle. This means it caters to those new to the world of wines as well as expert wine connoisseurs.

In its store, you have over 300 bottles to choose from, with detailed filters like type, price, region, wine expert, food pairing, drinking window, and flavor profile. This level of specificity in filtering options is more comprehensive than many other wine delivery services.

Filter options on Wine Access website

It sources wines from 8 different countries, including France, New Zealand, and Germany. All of the wines that make the cut are rated 90+ points and not commonly found in local stores. Options include wines ready for immediate shipping or available for pre-order.

Besides the standard red, white, rosé, and sparkling wines, you'll find dessert wines, fortified wines, and even Japanese sake. 

Wine Access Most Popular wines page highlighted


While there’s no pre-order matching algorithm, you can rate and save your favorites in your Wine Cellar, aiding in future selections. Alternatively, joining 1 of Wine Access's wine clubs can personalize your experience further.

Wine Access offers 4 wine clubs

It offers 9 distinct wine clubs, each with its own theme and benefits.

These include:

  • The Discovery Club for educational experiences

  • Connoisseurs Club featuring luxury wines

  • Collectors Club with rare bottles

  • The MICHELIN® Guide

  • Decanter Wine Club 

  • Sunset Wine Club 

  • The Champagne Club

  • Unfiltered Podcast Wine Club

  • Wine for Normal People Club

Wine Access has a podcast

Benefits vary across clubs, including video tastings, exclusive content, and complimentary shipping. This variety ensures there's a club that aligns with your wine interests and preferences. 

Unboxing

Wine Access takes extra care to account for weather conditions. This means the journey of your wine is safe, and your bottles arrive in optimal condition. For those concerned about weather extremes, there's an eco-friendly climate-controlled packaging option available.

Wine tasting videos add useful information about the wine and stories about it

Inside the box, you'll discover the sommelier-selected wines, each accompanied by detailed tasting notes. These help enhance your wine-drinking experience and provide an educational aspect, delving into the stories behind each wine. You'll find links to wine tasting videos, further enriching your understanding and enjoyment of the wines you receive.

Shortlist of My Favorite Wines

2020 E. Guigal Crozes-Hermitage 

E. Guigal Crozes-Hermitage 2020 red wine

The 2020 E. Guigal Crozes-Hermitage is a standout among Wine Access members. This organic French Syrah is perfect for enjoying right now, but it can also be cellared until 2030 if you can wait. The aromas of cracked black pepper, blackberries, and lavender lead into rich flavors of dark fruits. It's an excellent pairing for hard cheeses and red meats.

2021 Monchhof Estate Riesling Mosel

2021 Monchhof Estate Riesling Mosel white wine

This is a delightful, budget-friendly white wine from Germany. It comes from vines over a century old, originally planted by monks. This Riesling has vibrant flavors of crisp apple and tropical fruits, making it an excellent choice for enjoying now. It complements seafood, shellfish, soft cheeses, and a range of dishes, particularly those with exotic or spicy Asian influences. 

2020 1881 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

2020 1881 Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley is a best-selling wine

This is a celebrated gem from the region where Wine Access is headquartered. This Cabernet Sauvignon has earned acclaim as the top-rated and best-selling wine of its kind. Characterized by a bold, oaky profile, its aromas include black cherry, spice, and espresso. Ideal for pairing with hard cheeses and red meats in rich, hearty stews.

Prices

Starting From

Shipping Fee

$15 per bottle

Free with orders over $150

$120 per wine club shipment

Free

Prices for individual bottles at Wine Access span a wide range. They start at $15 and go up to over $2000. Shipping is complimentary once your cart reaches $150 in wine purchases. If the total is less, shipping costs depend on your location and chosen shipping method; for instance, it's approximately $22 to the East Coast. 

At checkout, you have the option to select TemPerfect eco packaging for an additional $10, though this fee is waived for orders of $300 or more.

Joining a Wine Access wine club involves varying costs based on the club you choose. For instance, the Unfiltered Podcast Wine Club, with shipments every 2 months, costs about $120 per shipment. On the higher end, the Collectors Club, with deliveries every 3 months, can go up to $400 per shipment. All club members benefit from a 10% discount in the online store.

Shipping & Delivery

Wine Access is unable to ship to Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Utah. Additionally, specific terms and conditions apply for deliveries in Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, South Dakota, and Texas. It's important to review these before placing your order.

For orders over $150, ground shipping is included, except for orders to Alaska and Hawaii. Members have a 30-day window to reach this threshold. When you buy any bottle, shipping charges are not applied at checkout. Instead, Wine Access will hold your wine for up to 30 days or until your order totals $150, whichever is sooner.

Wine Access app is really useful and you can pick wines and make changes to your account

Wine Access uses climate-controlled shipping methods, monitoring weather patterns to protect your wine from extreme temperatures so it arrives in impeccable condition. During periods of extreme weather, TemPerfect eco packaging is available to safeguard your wine.

At checkout, you have the flexibility to choose your delivery date, with most orders shipping within 2 to 14 days after placement. All deliveries require a signature from someone over 21 years old. Sending deliveries to a workplace address might be a more convenient option. 

How Wine Access Works

You have the option to order individual bottles as you would with any online purchase. Or you can join 1 of the wine clubs offered. The steps to do this are outlined below.

How to Sign Up

  1. Select 1 of the clubs to join from the Exclusive Clubs tab on the homepage. Step 1 of the sign up process is to choose your wine club

  1. Select Become a Member or choose to send the club as a gift.


you can join as a member or send the membership as a gift


  1. Decide what type of wines you want to receive. Step 3 is to choose red, white, or a mix

  1. Enter your shipping address and confirm your date of birth. Add a shipping address and personal details

  1. Enter your payment details and select whether you want your delivery shipped when weather conditions are safest.

    add payment details to complete the purchase


    You can select the date for your initial delivery. After that, your wines will be dispatched according to the shipping schedule of the club you have chosen. 

Managing Your Subscription

Managing your upcoming deliveries and making any changes is straightforward. You can either adjust your preferences directly from your account or reach out to customer service for assistance. If you wish to cancel your Wine Access subscription, contact customer service.

Customer Service

For customer service inquiries, there are a couple of ways to get in contact. You can reach out to Wine Access at help@wineaccess.com or call them at 1 866 946 3923. Support hours are Monday through Friday, from 7 am to 5 pm Pacific Time.

I wasn’t impressed with the absence of a live chat feature on the website. Given the exclusive nature of its service, adding this functionality could enhance the customer experience.

Additionally, if you find a bottle not to your liking, Wine Access offers the convenience of crediting your account for it.

How Wine Access Compares to Other Wine Delivery Services

Wine Access vs. Firstleaf: Firstleaf focuses on personalization, using a quiz to tailor its selections to your taste preferences. While Firstleaf is ideal for discovering wines aligned with your palate, Wine Access appeals to those seeking exclusive, hard-to-find wines with a story.

Wine Access vs. Vinesse: Wine Access provides access to a range of luxury and boutique wines, often not available in stores, and emphasizes the educational aspect of wine tasting. Vinesse offers a wide array of wines from around the world, making it a good choice for those looking to explore global wine flavors.

Wine Access vs. Naked Wines: Naked Wines operates on a unique model, funding independent winemakers and offering its wines at reduced prices to subscribers. This makes it ideal for supporting independent winemakers and enjoying member-exclusive wines.

The Bottom Line: Is Wine Access Worth It?

Wine Access stands out with its climate-controlled shipping. This means your wines arrive in impeccable condition, regardless of external weather conditions. This commitment to maintaining the quality of the wine from vineyard to your doorstep is a testament to its dedication to quality and customer satisfaction.

What sets Wine Access apart is the access it provides to wines you can't find just anywhere. Selected by experts, including a Master of Wine and a Master Sommelier, the wines offered range from hidden gems to renowned labels. This adds a layer of assurance and exclusivity if you want a more distinguished wine experience.

With multiple price levels available, it caters to a range of budgets while maintaining a focus on premium wines. For those who prioritize quality and uniqueness in their wine selections, Wine Access offers a worthwhile investment in your wine journey. For alternative options, check out our top 10 best wine delivery services.

FAQ

Is Wine Access Worth It?

Wine Access is worth it if you value quality, exclusivity, and expert curation. You gain access to a diverse selection of wines, including rare and luxury varieties not easily found elsewhere. The climate-controlled shipping ensures your wine arrives in top condition, making the higher price point justifiable for the quality and uniqueness offered.

Does Wine Access Have an App?

Wine Access has a dedicated mobile app available for both iPhone and iPad users. The app offers several features including the ability to shop for expertly curated wines, receive personalized recommendations, rate and review wines, and arrange shipping and delivery options.

How Do I Cancel Wine Access?

To cancel your Wine Access subscription, you need to contact the customer service team. This can be done via email or by phone. It's advisable to review the cancellation policy for any specific requirements or timelines to ensure a smooth cancellation process.

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