7 boutique wine delivery services you need in your life

By David Farley

The wine world can be an intimidating, especially if you’re more of a quaffer than a connoisseur. But you can take the anxiety out of choosing the right bottle by letting some experts help out—online experts, that is. The growing field of online wine delivery services make popping the cork that much easier; just beware that not every state allows wine shipping. Here are seven of our favorites.

The Accidental Wine Company
You can judge a wine by its label—but maybe it’s not always a good idea. Accidental Wine Company takes this idea and runs (or pours) with it: They purchase at affordable prices great wine that has blemished labels and sell it on their site for crazy-cheap prices. The label might not look pretty, but it’s what’s inside that matters, right? You can nab a bottle of 2005 Bruno Giacosa Le Roche del Faletto Serralunga d’Alba for $220 on their website, when it goes for another $100 or more on other sites.

Amanti Vino
This online shop takes the guess work out of shopping for bottles. That’s because it’s run by longtime wine expert Sharon Sevrens, who personally drinks (and approves) every single bottle on the site. Put your trust in Sharon’s palate and you’re sure to get a highly drinkable bottle every time.

Appellation America
Focusing on rare and obscure wines of the United States, Appellation America is the place to go to find something you’ll never come across in your neighborhood wine shop. While it's not an online store, the site is a reference guide where you can find anything from a semi-dry Riesling from the Finger Lakes region of New York State, or a deep red blend from William Chris Vineyards on the high plains of Texas. Also, a bonus: The search engine shows you which states you’re legally allowed to have wine shipped to you.

K&L Wine Merchants
This Bay Area–based wine seller has been in the biz since 1976. That’s a lot of, um… tasting, so it’s safe to say K&L knows a thing or three about wine. Especially when it comes to price and connections in the industry. They do a lot of direct importing of bottles, cutting out the middleman and passing the savings on to the consumer. For example, of a bottle of 2009 La Rioja Alta "Viña Ardanza" Reserva Rioja sells for $29 on K&L, while it is offered on competing sites for $5 to $10 more.

Last Bottle Wines
Last Bottle offers just one high-quality bottle of wine per day. It might be a Markus Molitor Riesling from Germany or a Croce di Mezzo Brunello from Tuscany, but it’s a good bet that it will be an extremely quaffable bottle of vino. Even better: The daily offer is discounted by as much as 70 percent. Now that’s something to drink to.

SommPicks
Not sure what you’re looking for? Former Del Posto sommelier Mike Zima takes the guesswork out of your decision. His highly curated list of wines is certain to be filled with drinkable gems. But if you really want to take advantage of his service, schedule a 15-minute phone call with a SommPicks wine expert to describe your ideal vino and the results will be magical.

Wine Bid
This is less an online wine delivery shop and more of a wine auction house. That's right: When your favorite bottle of vino comes up for auction you can bid on it—and can even get email alerts for when certain wines come up for auction. Then you very well may nab a great bottle at a more affordable price. Wines on offer run the gamut, from a 2014 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Richebourg for $1,850 to a 2014 FEL Hirsch Vineyards Pinot Noir for $35.

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