When Josh Hackler's family took a detour into northern Spain during a vacation in France's wine country, he knew he'd found a special place. Years later, Hackler would return to the region as a student and, in 2009, he founded Spanish Vines to bring little-known Spanish bottles to the US for the first time.
Seeking out and importing wines from small producers, Spanish Vines is about sharing unique experiences from Spain with American consumers. "Spanish wines are the best wine values on the planet," says Hackler. "And for that exact reason they should be people's standard for casual wine drinking. Life really is too short to be disappointed with any bottle of wine."
Until now, Spanish Vines has been focused on getting wines into stores and restaurants, but Spanish Vines Wine Club just launched online. Members will receive a shipment of six bottles of wine every two months, with a price of $125 per box—which works out to about $20 per bottle. The big draw is that all six bottles in each box are wines that have never before been available to American customers.
Some will be from regions you will already be familiar with, while others will be varietals and styles you might not even be able to pronounce at first. "My number one goal in exposing new wines is to lift the veil on the process behind choosing exceptional wines of great value," explains Hackler. "There's no shortage—nor will there ever be—of wine in the US, but what I hope to do is make people more informed about the way they choose their wine."
All wines are selected by Hackler and VP of product, Javier Alvarez—who is the team's constant presence in Spain. Members of the club will also have access to special finds (sometimes at a slightly higher price point) which will be available by the bottle for existing customers. Future plans include an editorial arm to further showcase Spain and Spanish culture as well as travel tips and guided trips to various wine-producing regions.
Early adopters can sign up for one-year or two-year memberships at the reduced rate of $500 annually—bringing the cost-per-bottle down to just under $14. The first boxes will be sent out in March 2014, with a regular bi-monthly schedule following. Sign up online now to get the special preview price, good through the middle of January 2014.
Images courtesy of William Hereford for Spanish Vines