With relaxed to-go booze laws in place in Colorado through at least July 2021, some local restaurants have gotten into the in-home sommelier service game. Restaurant wine clubs are gaining popularity, both among the eateries—which likely have extra inventory on hand and can use the extra revenue—and among customers, who are thirsty for more than their basic liquor store offerings. These monthly clubs, which can range in price from $25 all the way up to $300, offer oenophiles special bottles with a side of education and interaction. Some sommeliers even tailor vintages specifically to the member’s tastes, making for an ultra-personalized experience.
“We wanted to get rid of as much inventory as possible, but also to support some of our smaller distributors and the family-run wineries you might not see at liquor stores or wine shops,” says Hop Alley executive chef/owner Tommy Lee of his restaurant’s wine club. “We’re trying to feature wines you couldn’t buy yourself. And also to do something fun. Ultimately, we’re trying to get some stuff in people’s hands at home that they could get at the restaurant, and add some knowledge about it.”
That knowledge is part of the appeal. Most clubs, include Hop Alley’s, include sommelier tasting notes, pairing suggestions, and/or information about the producers for each round of wine. And since the clubs’ focus tends to be on hard-to-procure bottles, you’ll get to taste something new and exciting every month. Here are six new wine clubs that will help you elevate your at-home drinking while supporting local spots:
Barolo Grill has one of the best wine programs in Denver, and now you can take that experience home via their monthly wine club. Members get a trio of thoughtfully chosen bottles from sommelier Erin Lindstone, house-made grissini (Italian bread sticks) with which to chase the wine, and a note from Lindstone about her choices. $100–300; for pickup or delivery
Talk with Beckon sommelier Zach Byers one-on-one about your wine-imbibing preferences and the beverage pro will personally select bottles for you to try. You pick how many bottles and how fancy you want to get, and Byers will give you fantastic producers, grapes, and regions to explore. Starting at $125 for pickup
LoDo winery Attimo’s wine club is super accessible, with just $25 a month scoring you two bottles, a glass of wine at pickup, and other benefits such as discounts and first dibs at release parties and events. Or go big—still a deal at $50 a month—with Attimo’s Superiore wine club membership, which nets you two bottles of premium wine, plus all the other perks. Starting at $25; for pickup
Hop Alley is a force of nature, and so is its wine director Jacob Roadhouse. He’ll chose six electrifying, exclusive bottles for you each month, along with providing all the intel on the juice and its producers. Each subscription lasts for three months, at around $175/month; email Jacob@hopalleydenver.com with the subject “Hop Alley Wine Club” for more information. Starting at $175; for pickup
Join the monthly wine club at Boulder’s Blackbelly and take home three cherry-picked bottles along with a tasting booklet. While you don’t have to sign up for a long-term commitment, you may want to—these aren’t bottles you’ll find at your local liquor store, and if you sign up for six months or more, you receive 10 percent off. Starting at $99; for pickup or delivery.
Estes Park restaurant Bird & Jim offers limited-supply, sub-retail priced bottles to its wine club subscribers every month. Choose from the featured individual bottles or go big with indulgent three-bottle packs. Starting at $25; for pickup or delivery within Estes Park city limits