Summertime And The Shipping Isn’t Easy

by Jason Toon

Here’s something that won’t surprise you: we think wine.woot’s vineyard-to-carrier-to-you approach is the best wine-delivery methodology in the industry today. In terms of both economics and the treatment of wine, it’s certainly preferable to piling the kids into the le Baron for a trip to the liquor store. You don’t know where that stuff’s been.

But now it’s summertime, and we’ve been getting a lot of understandable inquiries into how exactly we’re going to keep your wine from boiling in the truck before it gets to you. First, by charging you an extra two bucks for shipping beginning next week and running through mid-September. What special treatment will your wine get for your $7? Depends on where you live, like so:

For residents of eastern states (specifically FL, SC, NC, VA, WV, OH, MI, CT, VT, NH, NY), we’ve implemented a process that consolidates all the wine orders onto a refrigerated truck, shoving off once a week. This rolling icebox will pass the orders off to a small-parcel carrier near you. Another day or two after that, your wine will be in your hand, wine rack, or belly.

We’ll be keeping an eye on the weather in central U.S. states (that’d be NM, TX, ND, LA, MO, IA, MN, WI, IL, NE, CO, WY), and shipping via 2-day air upgraded service if we’re worried about the heat. And we won’t send anything out to these states on Thursdays or Fridays, so it won’t be sitting on a truck or plane over the weekend.

Since the majority of our wine comes from the West Coast, orders to those states (CA, WA, OR, ID, NV) don’t need quite as much attention. But we’ll still avoid shipping on Thursdays and Fridays.

If you live in one of those pesky non-reciprocal states like MA, NJ, IN, AZ (when available), you’ll be glad to know that your wine stays in a temperature-controlled environment until the very last step of the “tediously long” delivery process. Your wine should have no exposure problems.

And, of course, a disturbingly large number of states still don’t allow incoming wine shipments (AL, KY, MS, AR, SD, MT ,UT, GA, PA, MD, DE, ME, KS, TN, RI). If you live in one of these states, why are you even reading this? You’re only torturing yourself. Call the legislative killjoys in your state capital and/or hook up with freethegrapes.org, the grape gripe group.

One more thing: do not be alarmed if you find a thing that looks like a overgrown ketchup packet in your order. It’s a super-scientific freezer-gel pod that we threw in there to reduce the ambient temperature in the package. It won’t be frozen by the time it reaches you, but it will have performed its duty honorably. Freeze and re-use if you’re one of those people who lived through the depression and never throw away your Ziploc bags or your twist-ties. We wouldn’t put it in our iced tea if we were you, though.

Obviously, nobody likes paying more, but we think an extra two bucks is a small price to pay to ensure a summer of spoilage-free wine fun. Now let’s drink again, like we did last summer!