My new year’s wine resolution for 2018 was to join at least one wine club, and I’ve been off to a slow start. In fact fair to say that I’d forgotten I’d made the resolution.
The GMWC has visited many cellar doors over the years and most of them invite you to join their wine club, pay a subscription fee and receive a regular delivery of their wines. I’ve always passed on the offer, for two main reasons. Firstly I’ve lacked confidence that the wines that will be delivered will be wines I’ll want to drink, and I could have just spent that money on the wines I like. Secondly, I tell myself that the wines I taste and love at the cellar door I’ll just buy by the bottle when I want to consume them.
But it’s time to trust the professionals, the winemakers and their team who carefully craft each wine club release.
For reference I’ve signed up with Oakridge for their Valley Pack. So I can expect a quarterly delivery of “wines that truly reflect all that is the Yarra Valley. Containing a mix of local vineyard, cellar door and Over The Shoulder ranges. Traditional varieties, plus experimental and exciting bottling from some of the valley’s best sites.”
And with Henschke I’ve subscribed to a tri-annual mixed selection that promises “A selection of discovery wines from the full Henschke range. Explore our full-bodied reds and crisp, clean whites. Hone your palette and learn about the different varietals that are available to you. Expect a mixture of regions, styles and varieties.”
There’s a host of other benefits that come with wine club memberships too. In addition to pre-release access to new vintages and invitations to events, there’s the member’s discount on wine purchases. In this case I enjoy a 15% discount from Oakridge and the Henschke member’s pricing is approximately a 10% discount in their online store. Sadly no discount on the new 2013 Hill of Grace. I probably shouldn’t expect that in the mixed selection either.
So now the anticipation until I receive my membership wines. I’ll report back on what turns up and how it tastes. And whether my leap of faith into wine club subscriptions has been worthwhile. Stephen Henschke has chosen “Faith” to describe the 55th vintage of their Hill of Grace, so I’m quietly confident.