BY ERICA SAGON
Oliver Winery has a rising new star: its wine club, which garnered 550 members in its first year.
Here’s how it works: Oliver Winery Wine Club members receive biannual shipments of wine discounted 20 percent from retail prices. Shipments of six bottles each are sent in April and November. Members can also pick up the bottles at Oliver’s tasting room, 8024 N. State Road 37. There is no fee to join and members have access to various events and other perks.
Todd Walters, Oliver’s retail manager, says the staff has intimate knowledge of the more than 40 wines produced at the winery and that each shipment is fulfilled with a critical eye.
“We spend a lot of time and take a lot of care in finding a combination that’s a really good fit for the season,” says Walters, who has directed the club since its inception.
Members choose from three themes: Sweeter Side, which ranges from $55-70 per shipment (think Riesling and Beanblossom Hard Cider), Drier Side for $70-85 (think Zinfandel and Sauvignon Blanc), and the Creekbend Collection for $95-120. Shipping charges are extra.
Creekbend Collection wines are made exclusively with grapes from Oliver’s 50-acre vineyard, located about five miles west of the tasting room. Those wines include Chardonel and Vidal Blanc Sparkling Wine.
In the future, Oliver plans to reserve small batches of wines just for members, Walter says.
Perks for members include a 20 percent discount on additional wine purchases of six bottles or more. Oliver also hosts free events for club members, including a catered reception at the vineyard. Plans for more events are in the works.
Most members live in Indiana and about 80 are in Bloomington. “It’s sort of starting to build a community here in Bloomington,” Walters says, “which I think is going to be a wonderful facet of the club.”
To enroll in the wine club, visit oliverwinery.com or join in person at the tasting room. Oliver ships to 20 states. To ship wine to an Indiana address, members must first fill out a face-to-face verification form at the tasting room or a winery event.