Whether you are buying for yourself, or as a gift, I hope you get a lot of use out of the beer of the month club reviews you'll find on this page. I've written short review with the most important point, then linked to the website where you can join the club, as well as a more extensive review detailing my experience and the beers I received.
There are quite a few options for clubs that you can join, with a variety of prices and types of brews available. In general, I had a great experience with all the clubs. They were eager to deliver high quality beers, directly to my doorstep.
I'll tell you what, it sure beat making a trip to the store and browsing the aisles or hours trying to find something new. I'm addicted to new things, and the longer that I'm a “craft beer enthusiast”, the harder it is to find a brewery, style, or bottle I haven't tried before. Being a part of these clubs really expanded the type of beer I was exposed to, and I had a great time reviewing them.
Keep reading to find which one was my personal favorite club, and the one I'm still a member of today! I'd love to be a member of all of them, but who can really keep up with all that drinking?! I'm busying writing a review of each of these Beer of The Month Clubs, and will update this post with links to the full reviews once their published.
This list is a work in progress. I currently have 10 total that I want to get through. I've received deliveries from five…so I guess I'm more than 50% behind. But it takes time to get a few shipments, take pictures, do write-ups, etc. I can't be drunk all the time, so it takes time to go through everything
Below, I'll do a brief overview of the clubs I've joined as well as the ones that I have yet to join. I'll include links to the full reviews as I finish them. If you don't see a link, I haven't finished the review yet. If you do see a link, you can take the time click and see what I thought of the club in the full review, including images of the beer and my thoughts on the individual beers I got. Or, you can just read the quick blurb and decide from there.
To save you time, here's the quick stats:
I'm still a member after 3 years: Rare Beer Club
- hard to find beer
- unique flavors
- exclusive offerings
- two big bottles per month with options to order more
- more control over what's delivered
- big bottles great for sharing with friends
- strong beers are not for everyone
- hard to finish one by yourself, doesn't keep overnight like wine
- more expensive than other clubs
Current Personal Favorite: Hop Heads
- most flavor of any beer club
- hoppy beers go great with food, or just by themselves
- good for hot summer days
- lots of people don't like hoppy beers
- not hoppy enough for true hop heads
Fan Favorite Club: US/International Mix Club
- biggest variety of beers of any clubs
- includes US micro, plus international selection
- good for people that don't like “hoppy” beers
- Belgian beers are great for cozy winter nights
- a little more expensive that US-only micro clubs
- foreign beers don't have “crazy flavors” like US micros
There are actually five clubs available from MonthlyClubs.com, and they are all pretty awesome. Monthly Clubs actually has a number of different types of cool clubs to join, including cigars, cheese, wine, chocolate, and flowers. Five clubs are dedicated specifically to beer drinkers, and each club is targeted towards a specific type of person. My favorite was the Rare Beer Club, but that one is a bit pricier and you get large 750 ml bottles instead of 12 oz bottles.
For typical beers at a reasonable price, I like the US/International mix. It provides the greatest variety. That way I don't get sick of having too many “amber ales”, and can mix it up with unique European styles.
As much as I would have liked to try all four individually, the US/International mix is just a mix of what you would normally get in the US Micro and International version. Based on what I received in the mix pack, I've written a blurb about those beers. I still need to try the hop heads one, since it's a new addition to their lineup.
10. US Micro
- $27.95 per month plus $15 S&H
One of the biggest trouble with “drinking local” is that you can really expire you choices of new brews quickly (unless you live in Oregon, Washington, or San Diego!). Being part of a US Microbrew of the monthly club immediately opens up some doors for you to try beers from around the USA without needing to make a trip across the country!
I actually drove across the USA on my motorcycle, stopping at a few breweries in each state, and was not able to come even close to “trying everything”. The US Microbrew of The Month Club is a cool way to taste the best of the best around the US since these beers are professionally curated and chosen for quality.
In my opinion, the US beers featured in this club were much more interesting than in the other US micro clubs below.
- $37.95 per month plus $15 S&H
Are you able to ship your own beers internationally? Probably not. Even if you were a frequent traveler, it would be insanely inconvenient to find and bring back international beers regularly. Your local bottle shop likely only has a few English and Belgian beers, if anything, and who knows how long they've been sitting on that shelf. Even my local BevMo only has certain selections and they don't rotate as often as the US craft stuff. 18-month old Belgian golden ales? Boring and stale.
That's why I really like having these international beers sent to me. I know they are going to be fresher, and more interesting than what I can source myself. And even though they are a bit more expensive than the craft clubs listed on this page, they are worth it because I can't source these bottles for much cheaper.
I was part of the US/International club, so I didn't get the full experience, but from what I got over three months, I was happy.
A lot of beer drinkers simply don't like the crazy stuff from craft beer breweries like chocolate stouts, or cherry watermelon wheats. That's OK! So you would probably like these international beers. They are less hoppy, more traditional, but still in the realm of “interesting” because they come from foreign places and use different brewing techniques.
Though The Rare Beer Club was my favorite club of this bunch, for obvious reasons, the International Beer Club was easily my second or third favorite, depending on my mood!
8. US/International Mix
- $32.95 per month plus $15 S&H
I opted for the US/International mix because I wanted to get a taste of both the US micro and non-US selections. While I was satisfied with what I got, I didn't realize that I would not be getting ALL beers from each of the other clubs. What I got in the package was 4 breweries (4 types of beer), 3 bottles each.
I was hoping for 8 types of beer with 1-2 bottles each! I guess that was wishful thinking, and doesn't really make sense now that I think of it. Anyway, this was a cool mix pack, but you will miss out on a few beers that the other packs would normally ship.
Personally, I prefer US micros because they're generally fresher, more fun & unique, and it's just something that's of interest to me. If I started another membership with Monthly Clubs, it would be the US Micro. It's also $4 cheaper per month!
7. Hop Heads
- $32.95 per month plus $15 S&H
Since I live in California, I have pretty easy access to a ton of IPAs. The West Coast of the US invented the “west coast IPA” (Green Flash Brewery). However, not everyone across the USA has access to delicious hoppy beers. If you're a hop head, and stuck in malty-beer USA, then this would be a great club to join.
Even for someone along the West Coast, there's nothing wrong with trying out hoppy beers from around the US. Sometimes it's nice to get away from the “punch you in the face” hoppiness California/Oregon/Colorado/Washington beers! Those guys have more balance over there lol.
Plus, you can try other IPA styles. Remember, there's red, black, Belgian, session, and more. I tried a nice Belgian IPA from the US's only Trappist brewery as part of my Hop Heads membership!
6. Rare Beer Club
- $35.95 – $70.95 + $15 S&H
My taste in beer is more expensive and unique, so I really enjoyed The Rare Beer Club. I love getting access to exclusive brews that aren't available in my area. I'm also a member of the Rare Barrel's Ambassadors of Sour Club and Sierra Nevada's Alpha Hop Society. Sours, weird hopping techniques, limited releases, big beers…that's my jam!
The cool thing about The Rare Beer Club for me is that it sets a limit where I can enjoy a few special bottles per month, without spending all my money. I'm a collector at heart, and it's easy to spend $100's on specialty beer without even trying.
The downside to this club (for some) is that all bottles are 750ml, so sometimes they end up being too much for one person to handle in one sitting. For me, meh, I do alright and can do 750 ml of 11% beer as long as I'm not driving! However, these are best when shared with friends that can appreciate and awe at the flavors, aromas, and story behind the beer (literature included with each shipping!).
5. Clubs Of America
- $42.95/month + Free Shipping
The beers you get with Clubs of America are pretty standard brews but I was amazed by the quality and flavor. There wasn't anything too crazy like salted caramel imperial porters, and that may be a positive or negative for you. Either way, it was enjoyable being introduced to a variety of new breweries that I either couldn't find in my local area or wouldn't try on my own.
I typically don't go for “American lagers” because they're a bit too boring, but my favorite beer from my 3-month membership was the Shmaltz Brewing Slighshot Lager (American Craft Lager). Surprise! Sometimes you gotta drink outside the box.
4. The Original Craft Beer Club
- $42/month + Free Shipping
This club provided a good mix of breweries, but beer itself was a little tame for my taste. I ended up using some of it for cooking because, well, I had better stuff on hand. There were a few wheat beers, amber ales, and blond ales that just didn't excite me that much. Don't get me wrong, they were good, but since I was subscribed to a few other clubs at the time, this stuff was drunk last.
Though this club wasn't really my speed, it would be great for someone that wants some pretty “normal” beers from the craft beer world. Some styles I received included, helles, kolsch, APA, and a blonde.
- Order $$ + $14.95 Flat Rate Shipping
I've featured Tavour in beer of the month club reviews, as well as in my post about ordering craft beer online (link coming soon). The reason it's in both, is that their setup is quite unique.
The way it works is that you get on an email list for their club, and they shoot you an email each time a new beer comes in. There's usually 1-2 per day. You respond to the email saying how many you want, and they respond saying you got it, or you didn't. The email system can lead to confusion, so I suggest using their app instead for more efficient beer ordering.
The reason this service is cool is because you actually get to choose which beers get delivered each month. It's more like an online retailer, but with slightly more exclusive beers. Plus, the emails contain really awesome descriptions, so you will have a good idea of what you want to buy, rather than browsing bleary-eyed through the hundreds available at some online sellers.
The downside is that you can easily go overboard, and I spent about $150 in my test-run of their service. It's flat-rate shipping, so that was a plus, but I really didn't meant to spend that much money. With a monthly service like the clubs reviewed above, at least you know how much you get and what you're going to spend each month!
2. Amazing Clubs
- $38.95 /month + Free Shipping
1. Clubs Galore
- $49.99/month + Free Shipping
New! Beer Across America
$40/month + Free Shipping
This is a new one I discovered after making my Top 10 list, so I guess now I have a Top 11 list! The concept and pricing seems identical to the other clubs on this list, so I suspect that it's exactly the same beer selection. I have seen some repeats between American Craft Beer clubs, with confirmation that they do buy in bulk with competitors. Just guessing though. I'll have to try this one out later though. I already have three clubs signed up for at the moment!
Note: This is not the same thing as Beer Camp Across America, which is a Sierra Nevada craft beer tour of the USA. Also, they seem to use the same slogan as another club: “The Original Craft Beer Club” so perhaps this is just a rebranded website for driving traffic to the club.
My Favorite Beer Club of The Month Club…
Though my list of the best beer of the month clubs isn't finished, I think I should pick a favorite for now, and update later as I go through the rest of the list. I have high hopes for AmazingClubs.com, so I'm joining this weekend and will begin my membership soon!
Well, I'm going to pick three winners. I'll pick my outright favorite with a caveat, my second favorite, and then the one that I think most people will enjoy. Why? Read on and you'll find out.
My all-time favorite beer of the month club is simply The Rare Beer Club. I enjoyed the variety of beers, the exclusivity of the selections, and it was what I felt a “club” should be. These were selections that I could not find in my local store, either because they are hard to get, or because people beat me to the punch. It also meant I could control my compulsion to buy a bunch of expensive beers every time I went to the store, because I knew that my rare beer shipment was coming this month.
However, if you are not interested in getting the 750 ml bottles of rare beer, and want more “drinkable” or “sessionable” stuff, then my second favorite was the US + International Craft Beer Club from MonthlyClubs.com. Why? Again, it's about the difficulty of getting these selections.
I have tons of options at my local stores for finding brews from my city, state, or even nearby states. Even a big company like Dogfish Head or Sierra Nevada has enough of a variety that I could drink them on a regular basis and rarely repeat the same type of beer. But finding “craft” breweries from outside the USA? Nearly impossible. Any international beers I find in the store are big companies that have shipment channels, and even then, many of the brews have been sitting on the shelf for a while and may be stale by the time I get to them.
That being said, the international-only club features just two breweries and two styles, with six beers from each. So you get the exact same beers in the US/International mix, just fewer of them.
But I'll also pick a third choice, because I know that many US beer drinkers don't want the weird import stuff. They want beers specifically from the exploding US Craft Beer scene, which is basically making the whole world jealous. Why go international when we have such a selection here at home?
So my favorite US-centered craft beer club is the US Microbrewed Beer of The Month Club from MonthlyClubs.com. Yes, it's the same website as the international club, but just a different club option. I chose this club because I felt their beer selections were more interesting than any of the other clubs, and the prices are all basically the same once you factor in shipping.
Scroll up for links to each of the clubs I've mentioned as my favorites to start your membership, or let us know in the comments which club you decided to go with. Have you joined a beer of the month club before? What was your experience?