Updated: May 24, 2020
When we started buying wine together about 10 years ago, our "collection" looked very different than it does today. I would say we had about a dozen bottles on hand at any given moment, and the majority of them were purchased from a large chain grocery store. The rest were from the sole wine club that I happened to join years prior (Rutherford Hill Winery in Napa). Our purchasing has shifted quite drastically since then. You see, we love sales and getting great value out of whatever we are purchasing - wine is certainly no exception! We still buy wine from brick and mortar retailers and wineries, but most of our collection (now sitting in the hundreds of bottles - yeah, we are surviving the Covid crisis well-hydrated!) comes through the interwebs.
Christmas came early from Garagiste!
Here are our go-to websites for buying wine online:
WTSO.com What an addicting site and app. WTSO (Wines 'Til Sold Out) offers up flash sales on wines from about 30%-70% off the "comparable price". Wines stay up until it is sold out (not quite totally true, but that's OK). Free shipping usually kicks in at the 4 bottle purchase, or at around $60 total purchase for higher priced wines. Excellent customer service. We've bought many, many wines from them. I don't even want to look at our account history......Expect an entire post about this retailer in the future.
Garagiste.com is an email list-serve type retailer. Email blasts go out to subscribers a couple of times a day. These offers are most often offering wine, but also you see olive oils, vinegars, and various other foodstuffs. The producers that Jon Rimmerman (owner) works with are usually small, so you have to click quickly to get the allocation. Wide variety of producers from the world over and all top notch quality - we've liked just about everything we've received. This resource will also get it's own post at a later date. But, in the meantime, if you do subscribe to the site, do yourself a favor and try a "mystery wine" and anything with from Ca' Rozzeria label. Incredible values to be found there! Shipping is not free, but reasonable.
Lastbottlewines.com is another flash site/app. If you happen to be the lucky person who actually buys the last bottle they give you a $50 credit - hasn't happened to us yet, but we will keep trying! Good deals, and since it's usually just one wine a day, it isn't so over the top in terms of offerings. Free shipping with a minimum purchase of about 4 bottles (similar to WTSO). When they do their marathon days to clear out a bunch of inventory, it is really easy to get click happy and buy lots of wine....but we have found that the prices are basically the same as normal, so we don't feel like we are getting a special deal here. However, shipping is usually free on everything during the event.
Wine.com is a new one for us, so we won't go too in depth. We signed up for the Stewardship program @ $50/year (we recieved a credit card promo that gave us $30 off) and now every order ships free - wether it is one bottle, or a case. They have a very deep selection of wines. Prices are not always the lowest, but if you are looking for something in particular and don't want, say, four bottles of it, this platform works great. So far, so good for us.
SommSelect.com. Remember the documentary Somm about the group of friends all preparing for the Master Sommelier exam? Remember Ian Cauble? Yes? No? Well, this is his site. If you are into high quality wines that are a little off the beaten path, often from smaller producers, this is a great place to look. The pricing is good, not great, but you would be hard-pressed to find many of these wines at your Kroger down the street. We have loved just about every bottle we've had from this site. If you are wanting to expand your palate and try your hand at tasting blind, join the Blind Six wine club. Super fun with a small group of friends. Just don't feel like you have to drink all 6 bottles....but if you do, plan on having house guests!
Cinderellawine.com. Similar to LastBottleWines but no app version. Good selections, often very good pricing, and free shipping. We've tended to like their offerings from Italy in particular. This is a sister-site to winelibrary.com, which also has a wonderful selection of wine.
There are sure to be others that will wet your palate and please let us know where you are getting your wine from online. We love a great deal and are always searching for new place to procure our juice! Cheers!
Some bottles from a recent delivery - Italy, France, and Portugal!