Drink Up! 10 Reasons You Should Explore Walla Walla’s Wine Clubs
Wine clubs can be overwhelming. If you are like most people and already the member of a gym, multiple grocery stores, magazine subscriptions, and the like, joining a wine club may seem like the last thing you want to do while you’re on vacation. There are SO MANY perks, though, not the least of which is being able to brag about being in a wine club. Walla Walla Valley has so many splendid wineries, it can be hard to decide on which ones you like best. Trust your taste buds and the feeling you get from being at the winery, and keep these 10 great reasons to become a member in mind.
1) First pick at limited and non-public release wines
Many wine clubs create such small quantities of wine that they sell out before the big event weekends. If you are a member, you are guaranteed to have first access to the most exclusive wines that the winery makes. Reininger routinely sells out of our really popular, small production wines within weeks of releasing them to wine club members. A membership means you don’t even have to think about it!
2) A sense of community
Walla Walla was, indeed, voted the “Friendliest Town in America” by USA Today, but becoming a member of a few wine clubs that interest you is a surefire way to have some places you feel totally welcome when you visit our fair city. Take advantage of the party invites of your membership, mingle, and make new friends from around the country. The best part is that you already know you have at least one thing in common!
3) The parties!
I’ve never been to a boring wine club party, whether I was working for the winery or attending. Who can’t have fun when the food is solid, the music is fun, and the wine is flowing freely?
A deal is a deal, and almost every winery gives monetary incentive to join their wine club. It’s a low-commitment way to save money on wines you were already planning to buy!
5) Exclusive tastings
Reininger, and many other wineries in the area, hold exclusive tastings with our winemaker during event weekends and a smattering of days throughout the year. We like to open our most special bottles and get club members away from the crowds for a more intimate experience with our winery…plus we save the best cheeses for the members only room.
6) Hanging with the winemaker
Great wine is great wine, but being able to mingle with the winemaker and ask questions about what they do makes great wine a great experience. I promise that you will be able to taste so many nuances in your wines after hearing the unique perspective of each winemaker that you are a club member of.
7) Exposure to new things
Everyone has things they know they are going to like, and that’s totally cool. Being a part of a wine club means that the winemaker is often choosing the wines in each delivery, so you are receiving what they think is going to be something you’ll like. If one wine isn’t your thing and you have a second bottle, keep it around for hostess and wedding gifts…which brings me to number 8:
8 ) Convenience
I hate running out the door to a birthday party or impromptu dinner and realising that I have nothing on hand to bring, meaning that I will then have to stop by the store on the way to the event thus making me even later than I already am. Having wine on hand because you are a member of a few different wineries is just one of the many unexpected perks you will be so excited about when you need it.
9) Free tastings
Tasting fees suck but are a pretty necessary thing to prevent people from getting trashed and driving drunk from winery to winery. We waive the fee for our wine club members and their friends as a courtesy and way to make you feel welcome any time you want to pop in and try what’s new.
10) Support of the Walla Walla industry and town
Walla Walla is undeniably a great place to visit. It is also vastly different from what it was before we had a strong wine industry here. Those great restaurants and shops? They didn’t exist before we had tourists supporting our local industry. The fun live music venues and art? Without a consistent audience they would go away. We need tourists to survive and keep this thriving little town flourishing, and by being a wine club member – even if all you choose is the smallest membership option – you are helping to keep the wine industry and town alive so you can keep visiting.
We would like to extend a big, public thank you to all of Reininger’s wine club members. Not only do we love when you come in (familiar faces!) and tell us about your adventures, but your business is so important to keeping the Reininger Winery doors open. Without you, we would not be able to continue to pursue our dream. Thank you!