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On the Seventh Day of Christmas, My True Love Sent To Me: 7 Winning Wine Clubs

December 31, 2020


Today is December 31, New Year’s Eve, the seventh day of Christmas, and the day when Pope Sylvester is celebrated. In in many central and eastern European countries, some call New Year’s Eve ‘Silvester.’  On this day, the sun is setting on 2020 and we have 2020 24 Hours to go and I wanna be sedated! 

What a year, huh? No wonder we wanna be sedated…

Good thing that on the seventh day of Christmas, my true love sent to me

As I write this, it’s 2020 4 hours to go until we say good riddance to 2020. For many of us, we’ve spent more than the usual amount of time sedated. Research shows that in 2020  “Americans Are Drinking 14% More Often During Pandemic, Study Finds” (from NPR in October). A report in the journal JAMA Network Open says women increased their drinking even more than men, up by 17% compared to last year. Some women even drank 41% more! In December, Science Daily reported a significant increase in binge drinking saying that “Harmful drinking among adults increases the longer they spend at home in lockdown, according to a study published in the peer-reviewed American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse.” 

Since we were doing more drinking in 2020 at home than in bars, Nielsen reports “that stores sold 54% more alcohol in late March compared the year prior.”  Since we weren’t supposed to leave home, online sales more than doubled. In general, larger wineries did well with the pivot to providing online ZOOM tastings while smaller wineries are struggling.

While alcohol sales at the grocery store have increased during the pandemic that hasn’t translated to increased sales for smaller wineries that typically don’t have a wide distribution and instead rely on restaurant sales, hand sells at wine shops, or direct to consumer via wine club or tasting room experience. Smaller wineries are  bearing the brunt of the industry pivot to virtual tastings and events according to Peter Mitham, who says that the pandemic is creating a more competitive market — and one where the smaller wineries, which depend on visits for sales, are struggling. Further, Andrew Adams points out in a December 07, 2020 article that “Existing Club Members Drove Digital Sales Surge” in wine. Those larger wineries with healthy wine clubs and marketing departments who could reach out to members inc creative ways have done well.”

That’s where these 7 winning wine clubs come in! 

One place to find winning wine clubs is via the five organic wine guides my true love sent on the Fifth Day of Christmas that Pam Strayer recommends. Here are a few of my favorites ranging from the tiny 600 case Clos Des Amis to the slighter larger The Ojai Vineyard (6k) to mid-range Brooks (20k), Montinore, and Turley. We prefer smaller family owned and operated wineries with solid sustainability practices, and we especially appreciate biodynamic and organic certifications that Montinore and Brooks possess.

  1. Brooks Estate, Willamette Valley, Oregon
  2. Clos des Amis, Ventura County, California
  3. Montinore Estate, Willamette Valley, Oregon
  4. The Ojai Vineyard, Ventura County, California
  5. Rangeland, San Luis Obispo, California
  6. Scharffenberger, Anderson Valley, Mendocino County, California
  7. Turley, Paso Robles and Amador, California

Learn more about these wineries in this post on Wine Predator.

Rangeland Mistletoe

 

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