I joined the Zagat Wine Club and paid the $69.99 plus shipping to become a member and give you this honest Zagat Wine Club Review.
Below you’ll find a full review of the ordering process, my experience with the club and pictures of what I received.
Many people are aware of the Zagat Guides. These are the guides for select cities that let you know where the best restaurants are.
Now Zagat is offering their wine expertise through their Zagat Wine Club. As a wine club affiliate I want to give you a full Zagat Wine Club review.
Zagat Wine Club Review – Benefits
Introductory Price – It’s hard to go wrong with the price of the introductory case. It’s $69.99 for 12 bottles, which works out to less than $6.00 a bottle. Shipping is $19.99.
Availability – Delivery is available to most states. Sales tax is charged according to your state.
Selection – The Zagat Wine Club wines are selected by experts and are wines you won’t easily find in stores. I found the wines I received to be very unique and enjoyable.
Convenience – The wine is shipped right to your door so you don’t have to spend time at the wine shop. Plus, you get to try wines you might not select on your own.
Peace of Mind – The Zagat Wine Club offers a 100% money back guarantee, so if you don’t like a wine you’ll get a refund. Also, you can cancel the club at any time.
Further Savings – If you continue the Zagat Wine Club after the first case, you get 20% of future cases. The price of future cases is $139.99 plus the $19.99 shipping.
Information – Each wine includes tasting notes to give you an idea of what to expect.
Free Gifts! - In addition to the great price, you get four wine glasses that are specially designed for wine tasting. That’s a nice perk. The glasses are made exclusively by Luigi Bormioli, Master Glassmaker, Italy. Additional free gifts I received included a food and wine pairing chart, tasting notes for each bottle and wine tasting instructions and terminology.
Zagat Wine Club Review – Cons
Accepting Delivery – You have to be home to accept delivery. They won’t leave it at your doorstep (which is probably good). You can also arrange to pick it up at Fed-Ex. And, you must be at least 21 to sign for delivery.
Shipping – It would have been a nice perk to include the $19.99 shipping in the introductory price.
Delivery Frequency – The Zagat Wine Club is a quarterly wine club. So, there’s no option for a monthly case.
Zagat Wine Club Review – My Experience
To start, I liked the fact that there was just one screen to provide your information, select your case option (reds, whites or mixed) and confirm your order. I like it when things are simple!
When I placed my order I was provided the option to create an account, which I did. This allowed me to go back in and see the progress of my order and which specific wines were being shipped to me. I felt it was worth doing.
When I entered my zip code a pop up message appeared with the name and location of the retailer that would be assembling my case for shipping. Being a well respected name, the Zagat Wine Club picks high quality retailers to work with. The pop up message caught me off guard a little. But actually, I was glad they did that. If there had been a problem with shipping, I knew where it was coming from and had a name to contact. All went well, however.
Immediately after I placed my order I was given a Thank You page, an Order Reference ID and a phone number to call with questions. Here’s a picture of that (personal info blanked out):
I was also able to print an order summary that had all the important info about what I ordered. Included in that was an estimated shipping date that was only five days later. That was a nice surprise to see since the sales page said to allow 10-14 days. Here’s a picture of the Print Order Summary:
About a minute later I received a Registration Confirmation email. This was the confirmation for creating the above mentioned optional account.
I was a bit skeptical I would actually get my wine so quickly, but a few days later I received an automated phone call from FedEx. They said that my wine would be there the next day and reminded me that someone 21 or over needed to be home to accept delivery. They gave me the tracking number and also said that I could have it held at a nearby FedEx facility if I wouldn’t be home to accept delivery.
Right about the same time, the Zagat Wine Club sent me an email confirming that my wine had shipped. Here’s a picture of the email I received:
And finally, here’s the actual wines, the tasting notes, the wine tasting instructions booklet and the free wine glasses out of the box. I should also point out that the stickers you see on the glasses came off easily. Everything arrived in great shape. There was no damage to anything. Twelve great, unique wines that I would have a hard time finding in stores.
Zagat Wine Club Review – Overall
Overall, I think the Zagat Wine Club is a great deal and you get to try unique wines you can’t normally find. I’m impressed by the four free wine glasses specially made for tasting. I like having the tasting notes for each bottle. A binder for the tasting notes would have been nice, but everything else makes up for it.
Something that’s important to me is that the club allows you to put future cases on hold if you don’t want them right away. They make it easy to reschedule your delivery and you can do it all online through the account you create when you order. You can also do it by phone.
I hope this review was helpful for you. See below for updates about the club. Cheers!
Update Winter 2014: I got my usual email from Zagat Wine letting me know my next case would be shipping soon. Some time went on and I noticed that my wine hadn’t arrived. So, I sent them a “slightly” impatient sounding email asking what the deal was. I even suggested in my email that they contact their distributer to get things moving.
Because, of course, I know best right?
Well, as many of you in the northern tier of the U.S. (like myself) know, we had sub-zero temperatures at one point. The nice people from Zagat Wine Customer Care sent me back a polite email letting me know that they didn’t want to ship the wine in such cold weather. As they said, “We want to ensure your wine reaches you in the best possible condition and these bitter cold temperatures could do serious harm to your wine.” They estimated another 3-7 days. Sure enough, after about four days when the weather warmed up a bit, my wine arrived.
Hmmm. A little egg on my face, I guess. My point here, however, is that Zagat Wines does look out for their customer, even when the customer thinks they know better… LOL! Give them a try, I think you’ll be pleased. I know I have been.
Latest Update: As an affiliate, I received an email letting me know that Zagat Wines is being discontined.
The good news is, Zagat Wines is part of the same program as Virgin Wines. The two clubs are virtually identical.
Click below for a great deal on the Virgin Wine Club!