What are the best places to buy wine online? We selected 9 top online wine retailers in the US and compared them based on selection, pricing, quality, features and site experience.
last updated May 17, 2018
Compare The Best Places to Buy Wine Online
Selection: over 10,000 wines Focus: California, Bordeaux, Burgundy, Rhône and Oregon Value: Good Pricing: 66% of wines are over $30 Features:
- largest wine selection available in the US
- over 2000 wines under $25
- Sort by clearance, direct buys, organic and wine scores
- old and rare wines
- tasting notes
- wine clubs ( at $20, $30, $50 and $70/mo)
- personal sommelier service
- will ship to select storage facilities
Shipping: $13 for 2, $25 for 6 (cross-country Fedex Ground). Many shipping options Location: Redwood City, CA Summary: At first look, K&L Wine Merchants has a circa 2001 look, but once you get browsing you begin to realize that it offers more wine than any other online retailer. The selection is clearly curated, even on the low sub-$10 end where it looks like they are very careful to avoid fake relabeled bulk juice wines. One neat search feature is the ‘Direct Buy’ sort which shows wines that K&L Wines import. The site is quick to load and a pleasure to gawk at.
Selection: over 7,500 wines Focus: fine, rare and collectible wines Pricing: 82% are over $30 Value: varies Features:
- ebay-like wine auction
- Buy it now wines
- tasting notes
- Cellar management tools ($30/year)
- Sell your wine collection
Shipping: market rate Location: n/a Summary: WineBid is like the ebay of online wine buying. The site is populated with wines from collector’s cellars and importers/distributors wanting to sell directly to customers. The user experience isn’t flashy but it is fast and easy to navigate. One exciting feature is the ‘Buy it Now’ wines which offer sub-$20 options that are screaming deals. All in all, winebid.com is designed for experts and no-doubt feels immense and daunting for the novice. Before you dive in, keep in mind that sales are final.
Selection: over 7,500 wines Focus: American wines and super values. Pricing: 72% are under $30 Value: Average to Good Features:
- Large selection (1900+) of wines under $10
- Sort by Ratings
- Tasting notes available on most wines
- Cigars, Beer and Accessories
- Event calendar for classes, tastings in store
- Local store pick up available in 15 states
- Shipping to all 50 US states
Shipping: $15 for 2 or 6 bottles (cross-country UPS ground). Many shipping options. Location: Maryland Summary: This site is geared toward value-seeking, bold red wine drinkers offering a large selection from California, Washington and Bordeaux. Since the selection is designed for low prices, it does have a large number of average-to-low quality wines which require savvy shopping. Total Wine is the only online wine store that ships to all 50 states. The site user experience does feel a bit clunky with slow page loads but checkout is easy.
Selection: over 7,000 wines Focus: California and New World wines Pricing: 45% are under $30 Value: Low Features:
Shipping: $15 for 2 bottles, $22 for 6 (cross-country UPS ground). Many shipping options. Location: San Francisco Summary: This site is fun to explore because of all the different ways to sort, search and explore wines. The selection is geared toward the bolder fruit-loving palate with tons of California, US and New World wines from Australia, Argentina and Chile. Below $15, the US wine selection should generally be avoided. After texting several people who offer guidance on the ‘Chat with an Expert’ pop-up, we confirmed that they are indeed knowledgeable and work on-site in San Francisco. The checkout is easy and tells you when the order will ship (e.g. ‘will ship today if you order in the next 1 hour’). The only unfortunate thing about wine.com was that the prices seemed high for what you get, particularly in the sub-$20 realm.
Selection: over 3,000 wines Focus: Napa Valley and Burgundy Pricing: 50% are under $30 Value: Very Good Features:
- Tasting notes on most wines
- Sort by Reviewer, Free-Shipping wines, 90+ wines
- Fun wine sales-geared blog
- Daily Deal site
– 1000 episodes (2006–2011)
Location: New Jersey Shipping: $15 for 2 bottles, $22 for 6 (cross-country UPS ground). Many shipping options. Summary: Overall, site has a great selection of still wines priced over $15. There are also many high end wines over $30 that were very low priced for what they were. Below $15, the US wine selection should generally be avoided. We did, however, spot several sub-$15 gems from other regions like Portugal, Greece, Germany, Argentina, South Africa and Australia. The shopping and browsing experience is easy and logical with many ways to sort. At the shipping screen, the site even had a ‘poor weather warning’ indicating that they would hold shipments for free until it was safe to ship.
Selection: over 1,500 wines Focus: Affordable French and Italian wines Pricing: over 50% are under $30 Value: Average Features:
- Additional 10% Off when you buy a case
- Tasting notes on most wines
- Educational notes on wine varieties and regions
Location: New York Shipping: ~$20 for cross-country UPS ground shipping. Free for first time orders over $100. Summary: A fun selection of unique and affordable European wines along with a few New World wine choices. The user experience is a little overwhelming with several drop down menus requiring that you really know what region/varietal you want. Of course, if you know what you want, you might enjoy this. However, if your search returns more than 100 results they are truncated to just 100 wines, which is annoying if you like to browse. Checkout experience is good and offers a shipping calculator but only ground as a shipping option.
Selection: about 1,200 wines Focus: high-end Italian wine Pricing: most wines are over $100 Value: Average Features:
- Accessories, glassware, wine boxes and misc. antique corkscrews
- A ‘daily deal’ of super premium wine
- high end Italian wine clubs prices from $99–280/mo
- Cellar management services, Wine Investment Portfolio Management
- A personable blog
Location: New York Summary: High end Italian wines offered at moderately fair values. Wine selection is small but is clearly curated by people who care and who are in-the-know. The user experience is not fun, because of difficultly finding and sorting wines.