Gold Series Wine Club Review – Gold Medal Wine Club
Which Club Did We Order?
We ordered the Gold Series Wine Club from Gold Medal. We ordered this as a one time gift shipment of 2 mixed bottles(one red, one white) and added a bottle of the Plus! program wine. You can see our full review with detailed scoring, of The Gold Medal Wine Club here. This article will outline our experience with this particular shipment of the Gold Series only.
How Does Gold Medal Wine Club Work?
Gold Medal Wine Club is a membership-based wine club that sends wines to your home every month, every other monthly, or quarterly depending on the frequency you choose. They focus on never featuring bulk wines, private labels, or close-out wines. All of their wines are small production and from smaller family wineries, mostly within California. However, they also feature a great variety of pacific northwest and international wines from boutique wineries. Gold Medal Wine Club has a satisfaction guarantee, the ability to save up to 40% off retail prices, an awesome rewards program, no monthly dues, no minimum obligation, and six wine clubs to choose from.
Customers can choose between six different plans that cater to all tastes and price points. Your wine will either come monthly every other month or quarterly depending on the plan your select and how often you choose to receive your wines in your plan. You can choose to receive 2 or 4 bottles of wine per shipment and if you choose 4 bottles you get an extra 10% off. You also get the ability to add a Plus! Program wine to your order that is specially picked for that month and is available in limited quantities.
- Gold Series Wine Club – this shipment is the most popular club and starts ar $39 per month. It can be shipped monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly. All the wines come from small family owned boutique wineries that are hard to find and award-winning. This is also the club we ordered, as a one time gift shipment.
- Platinum Series Wine Club – this club ranges from $75-$99 per month and features 90+ point rated and ultra-fine wines from California’s top winemakers. They have rare and collectible wines and also include pre-releases and specially made wines only for this club’s members.
- Garagiste Series Wine Club – this club ranges from $65-$85 per month and features handcrafted, small lot wines from independent artisan winemakers. Most bottles are of 1500 bottles produced or less and are rare and never available in stores. Selections come mostly from California and some from Washington and Oregon.
- Pinot Noir Series Wine Club – this club only features top quality Pinot Noirs made in limited quantities. Wines are from California winemakers.
- International Series Wine Club – if you love trying international wines, this club is for you. They only have exclusive imports from small wine estates and wineries from around the world. This club only ships quarterly and ranges in price from $65-$85 and includes 3 wines.
- Diamond Series Wine Club – this is their most exclusive wine club, only allows 500 members at a time and ranges in price from $165-$195 per shipment. All wines have 93+ point ratings, are extremely luxurious, and are collectibles. Wines come from California and from all around the world. Shipments are only available quarterly.
What Wine Did I Receive?
In my shipment from the Gold Series, I received:
- a Merlot Family 2014 Chardonnay
- a Merlot Family 2012 Zinfandel
- and the Plus! Program wine – a Babcock Winery 2014 Pinot Noir
How Did it Taste?
Unfortunately, I was very disappointed with the wines I received in this shipment, in particular, both reds. The Chardonnay was my favorite out of the three with its golden straw colored tone and fruity flavor. The tasting notes said there are aromas of pear, apple, and baking spices, which came through decently well. They claimed there were subtle notes of toast and vanilla, although I did not find those taste notes to come through much, if at all. Overall, this wine could have been fuller in body and had a more complex flavor profile. I also found it was too acidic for my taste for a white wine, which I think was the main issue with not having the flavors of the wine come through. For me, a white should be fruity, smooth, mellow, and have a slight sweetness, and this did not have that. However, if you like wines that are high acidity, potent, and strong on the palate, you may indeed like this wine.
The Zinfandel left me confused and uncertain why this wine would be included in a shipment from the Gold Medal Wine Club. Despite its awards and 92+ points from the California State Fair Wine Competition, I did not enjoy this wine and was quite taken aback by the extremely high acidity, harshness, and aroma of nail polish or paint when the bottle was opened and poured into the glass. This wine had an extremely high alcohol content and you could definitely taste it. It was very harsh and abrasive on the palate and the acidity overtook your palate and almost burned as it went down. It was not easy to drink and after a sip or two your palate was overwhelmed and it was difficult to drink any more of it. It was one of my least favorite wines I have ever tried. I had two friends who agreed with me as well. We all thought the wine was too sour and acidic and not easy or pleasant to drink.
There were similar sentiments from myself and friends about the Pinot Noir as well. Once again, this wine was very high acid and had a high pH level. The initial sip was ok and had some pleasing notes of cherries and spices, however, after the initial sip it became very harsh on the palate and the acidity was just too much to enjoy the wine any further. The aroma of the wine was quite strong as well. It had a very strong fragrance of potpourri, which is not particularly something you want to smell from a red wine. Many of the sentiments about these reds were given and confirmed by a friend whose parents and himself own their own winery and make wine throughout the year, with a focus on reds. He was very underwhelmed and surprised these wines received such high ratings and were included in this wine club. My boyfriend further confirmed he would not drink any of these wines again.
Would I Drink it Again?
Overall, I would never reorder these wines again and neither would my friends. We were all disappointed by the extremely high acidity in each bottle and the aromas of harsh, sour, and almost chemical-like fragrance. They were very hard to drink after the first sip and not wines you want to sit down and enjoy slowly. It was an underwhelming experience with these wines and surprising they were included in this shipment with so many other wonderful wines available for the same or lesser price point. With the wine I have left over, I would just use them to cook so cook some of that acidity and potent taste off.
Would I Recommend Gold Medal Wine Club?
This is a tricky question, but I am inclined to recommend Gold Medal Wine Club despite my poor experience with the wines I received. I loved the way the wines were packaged, the information and magazine with recipes included in the box, and I like how their clubs are so flexible compared to other wines clubs. Even though the wines I received were not to my taste, someone else may really enjoy them, as wine preference is quite subjective. Also, they have a money back guarantee, so I could have contacted them about my disappointment in the wines and had the situation rectified. In the end, I say give them a chance. I could have just received a batch of wines that just didn’t quite live up to the usual wines you get every month.
Read our full review of the Gold Medal Wine Club for more information about the club in general and how they scored on all the details.
Gold Medal Wine Club uses strict selection criteria for their wines and wines selected must have multiple medals from wine competitions, high ratings, and be listed in renowned wine publications to make their list.
- Gift packaging is elegant
- Wine bottle protection while shipping is sturdy
- Six club series to choose from
- Wine gift box sets
- No sign-up fee or monthly dues
- No minimum order obligation
- Plus! Program add-on feature
- Member discounts of up to 40%
- Can only choose between monthly or quarterly shipments
- Cannot choose which wines you want each month
- Quality of the wine is questionable
- States they ship to is unclear and they won't disclose
|No. of Bottles||
|Wine Delivery Frequency||
Monthly, Bi-Monthly, Quarterly
Mixed, All Whites, All Reds, U.S. Wines
Ongoing Until You Cancel, Limited 1 to 12 Shipments