The holi-daze are here! Hopefully you survived what felt like a week of Black Friday deals, seamlessly segueing into Cyber Monday. Personally I enjoy online shopping a lot more than having to go to a store. If you have a wine lover or two on your holiday shopping list how about giving them a gift that lasts all year without having to leave your home? Whether they are an oenophile or are just beginning to explore the world of wine, a wine club membership can be a great way to enjoy quality wines delivered right to their door.
There are different types of wine clubs. Back in the day we were members of a winery run wine club. Basically, this means you receive shipments of wine from the selected winery, up to four times a year, depending on the terms of your agreement. These wine clubs are ideal if you find a particular winery or two you really enjoy and want to explore their entire portfolio over time.
Another type of wine club is run by a third party who curates wines from around the world or a certain region depending on the focus of the club. This type of club allows wine lovers to explore an array of wine choices, often including wines you will love you just have not been introduced to them yet. I really like these types of wine clubs. The world of wine is vast and sometimes our given states do not allow us a full free market experience to enjoy wines from all over the world or even within the US.
Plonk Wine Club is the latter in style. They specialize in “bringing you an expertly curated selection of artisanal, small batch, rare, and sustainably grown boutique wines from around the globe, including natural wines grown using organic and biodynamic methods.” They claim to be “endlessly passionate about featuring adventurous wines from lesser-known grapes that hail from inspiring and diverse viticultural regions.” So don’t fear, this plonk may be inexpensive but it has been curated for quality.
Before this article begins to sound like a sales pitch I want to disclose I was contacted by Etty Lewensztain in September asking if I would be interested in sampling the Plonk Wine Club October Mixed Club shipment. Before I agreed I did a little digging into the club and into Etty. What I found peaked my curiosity so I agreed to accept the media samples and information for editorial consideration. There are several things I like about the Plonk Wine Club itself, and several things I like about Etty.
First, I like that the Plonk Wine Club has six different clubs to choose from – mixed, whites only, reds only, Cabernet Sauvignon only, Pinot Noir only, and Sauvignon Blanc only. As a foodie, I am all about food and wine pairings; therefore, I also like each wine comes with an index care that includes food pairings with recipes selected by Food 52 that are included on the Plonk Wine Club web site. I appreciate the flexibility of the club in that the consumer can select 2, 4, or 12 wines per shipment, and that shipping is free every time. Finally, I like that each wine is 100% Guaranteed by Plonk. Plonk offers the flexibility to change the wine club you are in each month and the number of wines you want to receive as well. It is perfect for gift giving because you can purchase either a 1, 3, 6, or 12 month subscription. A 2-bottle a month shipment is about $50, a 4-bottle a month around $90.
Another aspect of specifically the Plonk Mixed Wine Club is the selection of wines. The October 2017 selection included 2015 Santomas Refosk from Koper, Slovenia; 2015 Lusenti Guturnio Frizzante from Emilia-Romagna, Italy, 2016 Macchialupa Beneventano Falanghina from Campania, Italy, and 2016 Matetic EQ Coastal Sauvignon Blanc biodynamic wine from Casablanca Valley, Chile. This is a great selection of wines. Slovenian wines can be difficult to find depending on where you live in the US. I have been to Emilia-Romagna and never had a Gutturnio! What an awesome pizza wine! All four of the wines were produced by real family owned wineries and quite delicious. The web site also offers special collections such as Thanksgiving and even mystery 6-packs.
Plonk Wine Club makes a great gift but why not try it for yourself as well. If you are stuck in a rut of drinking the same wines and feel daunted by trying to branch out let Etty do all the seeking and you just do the drinking.
What strikes me about Etty Lewensztain is her accomplishments. She has already been named to Wine Enthusiast Magazine’s “Top 40 Under 40 Tastemakers” list, and Wine & Spirit’s Magazine’s “30 Under 30 List of Top Young Talent in the Wine World.” Food and Wine Magazine named her an “Online Impresario,” and she has been featured in Forbes, Snooth, Glamor, Details, Real Simple, Thrillist, Food Republic, The Huffington Post, and more. She holds a level 2 certification from WSET, and the American Sommelier Association. Just writing out some of her accomplishments makes me tired.
Etty began as a web-based wine shop in Los Angeles. The shop began receiving national publicity due to their unique selection of wines, all under $30. Over time, the web-based shop morphed into a wine club. Today, Etty has made Plonk Wine Club into a hit. Like I said, it has been featured in many national publications. And has been recently recommended by WineFolly as one of the “5 Curated Wine Clubs Worth Investigating.” So whether you are giving the gift of wine to a loved one or yourself, I encourage you to check out Plonk Wine Club and see if it right for you. Cheers!