Bright Cellars Wine Review

Published on June 29, 2021
Last modified on July 8, 2021

This Bright Cellars wine review post contains affiliate links and we were given a sample.  If you make a purchase we may be compensated.  All opinions are our own.

open bright cellars box with wine-bright cellars review-mealfinds

By Alison Chew

Reviewed by Rebecca Housh, MS, RDN

Bright Cellars

Bright Cellars delivers a personalized monthly wine experience directly to your door.  Members take a 7 question quiz to reveal their unique taste palate and are then matched with 4 unique wines from around the world.

Each Bright Cellars box includes tasting cards with information about each wine as well as the ability for members to rate their wine which will lead to better, more personalized wine matches in the future.  Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

What We Like

  • Personalized wine matches that get better/smarter over time
  • Unique, hard-to-find wines from small wineries
  • Wine cards give you a wine experience vs only receiving great wine
  • Flexible subscription: can change delivery frequency, skip deliveries, cancel any time

What We Don’t Like

  • Expensive; Shipping is extra
  • Can not easily update your taste profile after you have created an account; Swapping out wine is limited
  • To cancel you must email via a contact form

How much does Bright Cellars wine subscription cost?

5 bottles of wine in front of bright cellars box-bright cellars review-mealfinds

The cost of a Bright Cellars 4-bottle wine subscription is $80 plus shipping, service charge, and tax per delivery.  Members of this flexible wine subscription service receive 4 personalized bottles of wine monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly and can add additional bottles to any shipment.  Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

Below is a price breakdown for 4 bottles.

$80 for 4 wines based on the answers to your wine quiz

$8 Shipping

$2 Service Charge

$2.40 Tax (varies by state)

New Customer Discount: $50 OFF

Total: $42.40 for 4 bottles of wine

Optional Add-ons:

  • Corkscrew: $5
  • Monthly Premium Mystery Bottle: $20

Bright Cellars Wine Review: Wine Quiz

cheese grapes meat board with wine bottle and glasses-bright cellars review-mealfinds

Bright Cellars delivers a personalized wine experience to your door at your desired frequency.  They source unique wines from small vineyards from around the world based on your taste profile and past wine ratings (for existing customers).  Bright Cellars says that only 1 in every 12 bottles they taste actually meets their standards and make it into a monthly collection.

To get started, you take a 7 question quiz to reveal your taste palate which is then compared to each bottle’s 18 different attributes.  The 4 wines that are most compatible (i.e. have a high matching score) are presented as your matches.  Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

Bright Cellars Wine Quiz

To start your Bright Cellars wine subscription you take a quiz with questions about your favorite food and drinks.  The questions include:

    • What is the one type of chocolate you could eat for the rest of your life?
      • -“Dark Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, White Chocolate, Reese’s Cup, Snickers, or Fruit Candy.”
      • -I chose “Dark Chocolate”.
    • How do you like your tea?
      • -“Iced and Sweet, Iced with No Sugar, Hot with Sugar, Arnold Palmer, Brewed Strong, or No Tea.”
      • -I chose “Iced with No Sugar”.
    • What’s your go to drink? (when you’re out of wine!)
      • -“Margarita, Beer, Martini (dry), Whiskey/Scotch, or Mimosa.”
      • -I chose “Martini (dry)”.
    • What is your favorite juice?
      • -“Orange, Grapefruit, Grape, Tomato, Cranberry, or Is Coffee Juice?. “
      • -I chose “Grapefruit”.
    • What is your favorite wine pairing? 
      • -“A Fine Dinner, A Summer Day at the Beach, A Good Book, Your  Group of Close Friends, or A Wild Party.”
      • -I chose “A Fine Dinner”.
    • How adventurous are you with new food and drink?
      • -“I’m here to try delicious, unique wine.  Surprise me!, Throw in the occasional fun one you think I will love, or No surprises please. “
      • -I chose “I’m here to try delicious, unique wine.  Surprise me!”
    • Do you have a preference for red or white wines? 
      • -“Give me the best matches, red or white, Mostly whites, but I’ll try an interesting red, Mostly reds, but I’ll try an interesting white, Red wines only please!, White wines only please!.”
      • -I chose “Mostly reds, but I’ll try an interesting white”

 

TIP:  Once you take the quiz, create an account, and subscribe you can not easily change your wine quiz answers.  If you want to change your answers you have to reach out to the Customer Service team via an online form or call.  Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

white wine in glass and bottle-bright cellars review-mealfinds

You can swap out any of the bottles and Bright Cellars will present you with another match.  Be aware that once you make a swap you can’t easily go back to the previous bottle and you can only make one swap per matched bottle. This was a bit frustrating and I started the wine quiz over several times just to see what all of my options/matches were. You can also reach out to the Wine Concierge team to swap out wines.

After you receive and taste your Bright Cellars wine shipment, you can go back into your account and rate those wines.  Bright Cellars then uses this new information to recommend another set of 4 wines that most closely match your new taste profile.  And over time, as you rate more wines, Bright Cellars’ recommendations will become better. Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

Bright Cellars Wine Review: The Wine Experience

For our Bright Cellars wine review, we took the quiz and Bright Cellars recommended 2020 Batik, 2020 World Line, 2020 Jetbird, and a 2020 Vidriado.  As I mentioned above, we did make several swaps to see our other matches and ultimately ended up with 3 reds and 1 white.  Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

Bright Cellars Unboxing by MealFinds

During the checkout process, you have the option to add on a fifth “Monthly Premium Mystery Bottle” for $20, and we decided to add that to our order as well.  The “Premium Mystery Bottle” we received was the 2019 The Last Room Tempranillo.

With Bright Cellars, you receive more than just wine in every box.  Every bottle comes with an informational card that includes the wine’s origin, flavor notes, pairing suggestions, and more.  By including these cards, Bright Cellars turns this wine subscription into a wine experience that you can share with friends and family.  Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

wine information card-bright cellars review-mealfinds

We used the informational cards as we tasted each bottle and it helped us not only learn more about each wine but also about which flavors we like and don’t like when it comes to wine. Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

jetbird malbec lodi-bright cellars review-mealfinds

Jetbird: 2020 Malbec from Lodi, California  – Jetbird is a full-bodied red wine with fruity notes on the nose and on the palate with soft tannins.  We loved this bold red and it paired perfectly with our cheese board on a warm summer night. (Retail price $25)

World Line: 2020 Malbec from Lodi, California – World Line is another full-bodied red with fruity notes on the nose and finishes with a bit of earthy spiciness.  The spices were warm and not peppery, which I enjoy. (Retail price $25)

batik 2020 lodi wine-bright cellars review-mealfinds

Batik: 2020 Albariño from Lodi, California – This light-bodied white is the only white wine that we received.  It’s citrus-forward, crisp, not too sweet (on the dryer side for a white), and not very acidic/biting.   I’m not a huge white wine drinker, but this was very nice on a hot summer day and would go great with fish. (Retail price $22)

Vidriado: 2020 Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina – This was our favorite wine out of the 5 we received.  It’s a medium-bodied red with fruity notes on the nose and palate.  There is no spice, oak, or smoke flavors allowing the fruit flavors to shine.  (Retail price $25)

holding wine bottle with mystery bottle tag-bright cellars review-mealfinds

Mystery Bottle- The Last Room: 2019 Tempranillo from Yolo County, California – This full-bodied red had hints of black pepper, but was balanced nicely by the berry flavors. This was a nice surprise and a wine that we really enjoyed.  (Retail price $28)

Overall, Bright Cellars did a pretty good job pairing my tastes with the five wines that we received.  I do love Malbec and lean toward the bolder reds, but don’t care for the smokey, oaky, or peppery/spicy taste profile that often comes with this type of wine.  The three Malbec’s were a hit, all bold, fruit-forward, with a limited amount of smoke, oak, and spice.

The Mystery Bottle, a Tempranillo, was something that I may not have picked because of the black pepper notes, but it ended up being very enjoyable.  The white wine, an Albarino, was, again, not something that I would pick, but was perfect on a warm summer afternoon. Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

Is Bright Cellars Worth it?

cheese grapes meat board with wine bottle and glasses-bright cellars review-mealfinds

After tasting our wines I wanted to see if I could find them online, outside of Bright Cellars, and compare the retail price with what we paid.  I found that you could buy all of the wines that we received directly from the winemaker online, but you could not find them anywhere else online.  This lives up to Bright Cellars’ promise of delivering unique wines, from small vineyards from around the world.

In addition, if we purchased these wines from the winemakers they are more expensive than what we paid on Bright Cellars and we would have to pay high shipping fees and meet minimum orders of 6 bottles.  The retail price of the 5 wines we received if we purchased directly from the winemakers would be $125.

With Bright Cellars we paid $64.20 for 5 bottles of wine and saved 50% over retail!  With this new offer you will save even more! Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

After the new customer discount, the price for 4 bottles is $80 plus $8 shipping, $2 service fee, and tax; around $93.  The price for 5 bottles would be around $115.  Both are still less than the retail price and include shipping, but the cost savings are not as great.   Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

Bright Cellars Wine Review: Bottom Line

box with wine bottles and info cards-bright cellars review-mealfinds

Bright Cellars delivers a personalized monthly wine experience directly to your door.  Members take a 7 question quiz to reveal their unique taste palate and are then matched with 4 unique wines from around the world.  Each Bright Cellars box includes tasting cards with information about each wine as well as the ability for members to rate their wine which will lead to better, more personalized wine matches in the future.

We love that Bright Cellars matches you with wines based on your taste profile and that your matches get better as you rate more wines over time.  We also like that you can change the frequency of your subscription and skip deliveries at any time.

The informational wine cards, for us, were a big hit and turned this wine subscription from a box of premium wine to a premium wine experience.  It was fun to learn about the wine, and about inturn more about my own tastes, and to share this experience with friends.  Because of this, Bright Cellars makes for a wonderful gift.

And while our wine from Bright Cellars tasted great, without discounts this wine subscription can get expensive when you add on shipping, tax, and the service fee, but it’s still less expensive than buying wine directly from the winemaker.  (We saved 50% over retail!)  We don’t love that you can’t easily update your taste profile, and swapping out wine matches is a bit of a hassle.

Compared to other wine subscriptions that we have tried, Bright Cellars is unique in that it delivers personalized hard-to-find wines directly to your door.  The minimum order, 4 bottles, is less than some clubs where you have to order 6 or 12 bottles.  There are a handful of clubs that will personalize your wine order and a handful that send truly unique hard-to-find wine, and very few that do both.  These clubs, like Bright Cellars, tend to be on the more expensive end of the price scale with bottles between $15 – $20+ each.

We would recommend Bright Cellars to anyone looking for unique, premium, personalized wines, those who want to learn more about wine as they drink it, and those who are looking to give a unique gift to a wine-lover in your life. Get 6 Bottles for $53 >>

Enjoy!

Looking for more wine clubs or wine subscriptions?  Check out our Wine Directory >>

This post has been reviewed and approved by our dietitian Rebecca Housh, MS, RDN, LDN for nutritional accuracy.
rebecca-housh-ms-rdn-ldn-registered-dietitianRebecca Housh is a registered dietitian based in Chicago, IL. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Human Physiology from Boston University and a Master of Science in Human Nutrition from the University of Illinois in Chicago. Rebecca is passionate about the idea of food as medicine in both preventative and therapeutic care. Her current professional interests lie in food security, food access, and nutrition for chronic disease.

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