Food & Drink

The 7 Best Booze of the Month Clubs to Give as Gifts (or Join Yourself)

Courtesy of Martha Stewart Wine Co.

Give a person a bottle of liquor, and they drink for a week. Give them a subscription to a monthly booze delivery service, and they drink for a lifetime. Liquor subscriptions are the perfect gifts for anyone trying to build out their bar, discover new bottles, or supply party after party. They also make a wonderful treat yo’ self splurge, with gifts showing up at your door like it’s your birthday every month. Here, the best monthly liquor subscription services, no matter your monthly booze needs.

For the Novice Drinker: Taster’s Club ($70 per month)

A monthly delivery service is a great way to get a crash course in booze. With different services for whiskey, gin, vodka, tequila and rum, Taster’s Club intends to make everyone a drinks expert. The company not only sends a monthly bottle, but also “101 course material,” with info about the production and history of that bottle, as well as industry-wide context so that you can understand what you’re drinking in terms of the larger drinking world. The Whiskey 101 guide, for instance, includes an overview of whiskey styles, features on distilleries around the world, a tutorial on whiskey distillation and aging, flavor profiles of specific bottlings, and expert commentary.

For the Hostess with the Mostess: Martha Stewart Wine Co. Wine Club (about $8 per bottle)

You don’t always know who’s selecting your bottles when it comes to wine clubs. Unless you’re already a vino expert, you might be cautious to invest in a case from an unknown service. But you can trust Martha.

The empress of all things hosting, Martha Stewart doesn’t screw around with her booze delivery. Available in six-bottle shipments every six weeks or full case deliveries every eight weeks, the Martha Stewart Wine Club drops are packed with her own favorite, hand-picked bottles. They’re all good things. When the guests at your next dinner party ask where you found that magnificent Cabernet, you can just say it was suggested by your good friend MS.

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For the Whiskey Expert: Caskers Whiskey Club ($160 per quarter)

Most delivery services offer convenience, saving you a trip to the liquor store. But many don’t actually provide a better bottle selection than your corner store. Caskers curates a selection of small-batch artisanal brands, so you actually receive some extra bang for your buck.

Given that Caskers also offers private casks and concierge services for ultra-rare bottles, you can be assured that the authorities scouting new bottles for you know their stuff. While you won’t be getting anything super expensive in your quarterly delivery of three bottles, those luxury connections may well trickle down to the standard offerings.

For the Indecisive Friend: Bright Cellars ($60 per month)

You trust Facebook personality quizzes to determine where you should live, what ‘90s kid stereotype you fit, how hipster you are, and what brunch item is your actual soulmate. But now it’s time to take a quiz that actually delivers something useful, like what booze you should drink. All you have to do is answer a few of Bright Cellars’ easy questions about general preferences, like how adventurous you are or what kind of chocolate you like best. Then, enjoy four new wines, chosen just for you, every month.

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For the Explorer: Mashbox Sampler Subscription ($25 per month)

A full bottle can be a big investment. If 750 milliliters seems like too much for you every month (or a $100 subscription seems like a hefty gift), consider Mash and Grape’s Mashbox service, which sends out three mini bottles of new, exciting booze every month.

The sample sizes certainly won’t replace a monthly liquor store run, but will let customers try before they buy full bottles. Mash and Grape also sources some pretty niche bottles, making it a great way to discover releases before the rest of the drinking world catches on. Plus, the market even offers monthly subscribers discounts on full bottle purchases, so there’s no excuse not to follow through on your latest boozy find.

For the Craft Beer Geek: Craft Beer Club ($42 per month)

It’s hard to impress a craft beer nerd, but the selection from Craft Beer Club will do just that. Maybe you’re tired of the craft grind and hobnobbing with fellow nerds at craft beer shops, and you just want your bottles delivered. Maybe you’re a doting aunt who wants to give a sudsy gift your nephew will actually appreciate. Either way, Craft Beer Club gets you the best of the craft beer world, skipping over months of research, visits to destination beer shops and breweries across the U.S., and bidding on esoteric, rare bottles online.

Each monthly delivery consists of 12 bottles, comprised of four styles from two breweries somewhere in the U.S. Should you need longer than a month to really contemplate your latest bottle, you can opt for deliveries every two or three months instead.

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For Your Exact Taste: Flaviar ($20 per month or $210 per year)

Flaviar is the Swiss Army Knife of booze. It is perfect for absolutely anyone because the service curates bottles based on each customer’s specific tastes. Each quarterly delivery consists of three 0.5 oz sample bottles simply labeled A, B and C, allowing you to taste new booze without any preconceptions. After blind tasting each, you can pull out the included fact sheets to match each sample with an actual bottle.

Then, Flaviar’s data-driven magic happens. Customers tell Flaviar which samples they liked and disliked, and Flaviar uses that data to determine the next set of samples. Over several months, the data adds up, so Flaviar can even coordinate tastes across spirits categories—for instance, if you like woody flavors in your whiskey, you may like them in your rum too. Along with the personal curation aspect, you also have to enter your email on the waiting list to secure a spot, so the gift of a Flaviar membership is best given to yourself.