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We live in virtual times, and wineries, brands, and industry pros have adapted accordingly. While there’s nothing quite like an in-person wine tasting, having the option to do so from the comfort of your own home (and on your own time) certainly has its appeal.
With a bit of planning, you can now access a variety of wine tasting experiences at different price points. Simply choose a tasting format that fits your needs, buy your wines in advance, and tune in at your scheduled time (or via social media, if the video is available there). No dress code is required. Here are some of the most exciting virtual wine tastings to try at home.
Not only is Wine.com a large online retailer of wines, but the company frequently offers unique and diverse live wine tasting events.
Option to livestream tastings or watch at a later date
Wine tastings are free
Typically $20+ shipping fees
Must plan ahead to have wines delivered in time for event
Wine.com is home to an ongoing calendar of free wine tasting events. All you need to do is buy the wine corresponding to your tasting of choice ahead of time, register for the free event via the website, and you’ll receive instructions and login information for the virtual tasting, which is held webinar-style via Zoom.
And, if something happens to come up (since we’re all so busy these days) and you can’t make the live tasting after you’ve signed up and purchased the wines, don’t fret: You can watch the whole tasting afterward on YouTube.
Wine.com’s past events have highlighted interesting themes and people, including biodynamic wines with revered French winemakers and sustainability trailblazers Gérard Bertrand and Michel Chapoutier, a Mother’s Day weekend special hosted by Lisa Vanderpump and daughter Pandora Vanderpump Sabo (the duo showcased their own wines), Antinori’s World of Wines, rosés with John Legend and wine entrepreneur Jean-Charles Boisset, and even a deep dive into Invivo X, hosted by owner and actress Sarah Jessica Parker. The events page is updated regularly, so check it out to stay in the loop.
Again, the tastings themselves are free, but the cost of the accompanying wines depends on them (for example, the two SJP wines for the Invivo X tasting cost around $39, plus shipping and tax).
This service offers a bevy of private tasting options from small, boutique vineyards, giving the customer a customized experience for virtual special events and tasting for no particular reason.
Customized experience including food pairings, games, and nonalcoholic beverages
Opportunity to virtually “meet” winemakers
Count on longer lead times before shipping
Packages can get pricey
Napa-based wine club Priority Wine Pass has joined forces with a number of wineries throughout California, Oregon, and Virginia to bring a variety of tasting experiences to members’ homes.
These tastings are an excellent option if you’re looking for something personalized and private, either as a date night, a get-together with friends, or a remote team-building activity with colleagues or clients.
Simply head to the website to choose from a menu of participating wineries (most of which offer a variety of different themed packages), and from there, you’ll be placed directly in the winemaker’s hands to get your tasting set up.
The Priority Wine Pass virtual tasting roster includes Prime Solum, Expression 38°, Tetra, Brigitte, and Courtesan in Napa Valley, Boeschen Vineyards in St. Helena, J. Cage Cellars in Sonoma, Brandborg Vineyard & Winery in Oregon, Horton Vineyards in Virginia, and more.
One of the main perks of Priority Wine Pass is consistent discounts, so you’ll be paying less than retail price no matter which package you choose. These tastings start at around $60 and increase from there.
If orange wine is your jam, or you’re just interested in learning more about this skin-contact wine, Orange Glou offers an orange wine subscription program featuring curated wines from all over the globe.
Three types of subscriptions and delivery frequency options
Supplemental materials included, featuring food pairing suggestions and tasting notes
Orange wines may not appeal to everyone
Subscription and shipping cost can be expensive
New York-based sommelier extraordinaire Doreen Winkler is on a mission to bring her love of orange wines to the masses. Thanks to her, one of the most exciting wine subscriptions out there is entirely dedicated to the category.
Winkler offers several Zoom wine tastings experiences for small or large groups, for which you purchase the bottles of wine and glasses when signing up for the tasting. With their virtual offerings, you can choose from one of two packages. You can choose the online group event 1 offer where for 20-30 minutes, you'll learn about the history of orange wine, how it is made, and taste two different orange wines with a sommelier for $89 per box (minimum of 20 boxes). Their second online group offering includes the same elements, but lasts for 45 minutes, has a three-bottle tasting, and is $105 per box (minimum of 20 boxes).
If you’re curious about joining, but want to learn a bit more about the concept and orange wines in general, you can always tune into Winkler’s past videos via the club’s Instagram (these are posted to the feed after the live sessions). Orange Glou memberships start at around $105 per month, and you can always purchase one-off boxes on the website, either for yourself or as a gift.
Experience a live and private tasting from one of Napa’s premier wineries, Far Niente, a pioneer in establishing sustainable vineyard practices.
Can book up to 20 virtual guests
Opportunity to engage with and ask questions of wine educators
Tastings can be pricey
Must book in advance for wine shipments
Far Niente, a Napa Valley fine winery founded in 1885, offers a variety of custom online tastings to accompany its standout wines (the brand is perhaps best known for its Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon).
To book a virtual wine tasting reservation for between one and 20 guests, you can make a reservation online, and from there, you’ll receive word on your corresponding wine order and shipping details. (If more than one household is involved, the wines will be delivered to each doorstep).
These tastings are guided by one of Far Niente’s wine educators. During the sessions, you’ll learn about the specific wines you’re enjoying, and you’ll also have the opportunity to ask any and all questions, leaving you with a more robust knowledge of the subject than you had before.
The virtual tasting is complimentary with the cost of the wines; pricing will be confirmed upon your reservation booking, but for perspective, a red and white wine tasting for two guests with three bottles is roughly $220.
Wine journalist Chasity Cooper engages and activates wine tastings in an informal manner, right from her social media accounts, walking viewers through tasting tips and more.
Videos are free and fun
Offers scheduled one-hour tastings
Social videos are geared towards educating viewer rather than live, synced tastings
Wine prices can vary
On a biweekly basis, Chicago-based wine journalist Chasity Cooper takes to IGTV and her blog to share her love and knowledge of wines with viewers everywhere.
So far, her relatable, at-home tasting videos have covered great wines for movie night, budget-friendly sparkling wines, a variety of fun Italian wines, a selection of noteworthy bottles from Oregon’s Willamette Valley, and more. This format is a bit different from the others on this list in the sense that Cooper is, in a way, trying before you buy.
She’ll take you through a tasting and let you know where to get the wines for yourself afterward, if you’re so inclined, and will set you up for success in conducting your own tasting once you receive them. Plus, you can always queue up her video again if you’d like to taste alongside her.
This is a laidback series of approachable tastings, featuring a fun selection of wines with a dash of great personality. You can head to Cooper’s Instagram or her blog to check out past episodes and wait for new ones to go live. Cooper’s videos are free, but of course, prices vary if you wish to purchase any wines.
Famed California sparkling wine producer Chandon offers a membership club featuring their wines, including tasting tips and notes.
Members receive other discount benefits
Offers a sparkling, non-sparkling, (or both) types of memberships
Members may prefer trying wines from other vineyards
Cannot swap out wines
Sparkling wine enthusiasts rejoice: Chandon has launched a series of virtual tastings available to both club members and non-members alike, focusing on wines from the brand's shipment of the month (which you can purchase individually for tastings available to non-members).
Chandon’s April tasting, which you can access publicly now via its website and watch while sipping the Virtual Wine Tasting Volume 1 pack, features Head Winemaker Pauline Lhote covering her and the brand's backstory. Meanwhile, she'll take you through the winemaking process and a dive into three wines: Chandon Brut and a duo of winery exclusives (Reserve Blanc de Blancs and the Vintage Yountville Brut 2015).
Virtual wine tastings showcase wines featured that month. You can sign up for Chandon’s email list on the brand's website (you’ll receive a Zoom meeting invite and information on the wines), or you can join via Facebook Live.
The publicly available tastings carry no cost, but in terms of bottle pricing, you can purchase them individually or buy the full set featured in the tasting (all of the Volume 1 bottles cost about $115, plus shipping). Club members pay $150 per wine shipment (six deliveries a year), and they receive discounts on bottle purchases.
Wine tasting is a wonderful way to try new styles and types of wine and hone your wine palate solo or with friends, family, and coworkers. Thanks to an abundance of companies and vineyards offering tasting kits, you can easily participate in tasting events from the comfort of your home. Wine.com features a variety of wine tasting programs, including live and streamable events, making it our top choice. Whatever at-home route you decide, however, learning more about wine virtually from the comfort of your home is easy, safe, and fun.
What Is a Virtual Wine Tasting?
A virtual wine tasting is a guided wine tasting to be enjoyed in the comfort and safety of your own home. Some are hosted by wineries themselves, while others are hosted by wine regions, retailers, wine clubs or influential figures (usually in partnership with a producer). Most of these tastings will provide you with the information to purchase your wines and any other supplies ahead of time.
How Much Do Virtual Wine Tastings Cost?
Some virtual wine tastings are completely free, though the cost of the wines themselves is, of course, a factor. Depending on the tasting, you can expect to pay anywhere from $40 to $200 or more, depending on the quality of the wine and any added fees or shipping costs.
Can I Book a Wine Tasting for Multiple People at the Same Time?
A virtual wine tasting can make a great group activity, especially if it’s pre-recorded or hosted via Zoom. Some hosts limit the amount of guests per tasting, but the attendees can join from anywhere—meaning you don’t all have to be physically together in the same space, a feature that contributed to the virtual wine tasting boom. If you’re thinking of gifting a virtual wine tasting to someone else, you can easily do so, whether it’s for a friend or loved one, or something for the two of you to enjoy together.
In selecting the best options available, we chose from several great wineries and brands across the country, big and small, keeping in mind that catering to different budgets is necessary. We wanted to keep options diverse, so you can splurge on an at-home wine tasting if that’s your preference, but you can also have the option to indulge without breaking the bank. If you’re looking to treat yourself to a luxe virtual wine tasting, Far Niente Winery is a great option. If a more affordable option is what you’re seeking, Wine With Chas and Seneca Lake Wine Trail’s free tastings are available.